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Member since: Sat Feb 3, 2007, 12:43 AM
Number of posts: 14,249

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How I would handle being on a flight with Ivanka Trump

Had I found myself on a flight with Ivanka Trump, I would never have screamed at her. Not only don't I behave that way toward anyone - and I refuse to allow my disgust and horror Trump turn me into a lesser, uglier version of myself - that kind of behavior doesn't result in any outcome other than venting, which is useless at this point.

Instead, I would see this as a great opportunity, not to let off some steam but to actually try to get her to think in a different way. I would go to my seat, carefully think about one - just one - issue I care about, pull out a piece of paper and write out a short note explaining it, and also develop a short and to-the-point "elevator" comment about it. I would then wait until the flight took off, walk up the aisle to her and politely ask for a moment of her time. I would calmly but firmly make my point and hand her the note - along with my card - and invite her to contact me if she wishes to discuss it any further. I wouldn't expect her to, but one never knows, do one? And I would ask for her contact information (and if she was traveling with any staff, definitely get theirs) and follow up with a letter or email.

Then, I would have gone back to my seat and tried to engage the people around me in a discussion about the issue I had just talked to Ivanka about. I would encourage them, if they were so inclined, to politely approach her to share their point of view, as well.

I've done this many times with people with whom I disagree and have often been pleasantly surprised at the reaction and results. Many have actually followed up with me. On some occasions, I've run into them again and they remembered me and we have continued the conversation. Often, I figured they were just humoring me, but at least they were listening. And if enough people do that, it can have an impact on them. Many of these people are in a bubble - they only talk to people who agree with or pretend to agree with them. And those who don't agree with them are outside of the bubble screaming at them. Situations like this provide an opportunity to actually permeate that bubble. I choose not to waste such opportunities by screaming at them from inside the bubble, which doesn't result in any of the goals I'm trying to achieve.

Suggestion: we stop with the "Chump" "tRump" "RePug" namecalling and focus on issues

I cringe every time I see progressives use these terms during political discussions. This kind of schoolyard "you're a poo-poo head" taunting makes us look childish and petty and takes away from the real, serious issues we're trying to address.

Referring to our adversaries by their actual names won't normalize or elevate them or diminish our position. In fact, it will make it easier for us to get across our point.

ENOUGH with the "Clinton campaign didn't ask for our help" whining!

The newest permutation of the "We told you so" diatribes seems to be the complaint that the Clinton campaign didn't reach out enough to Sanders supporters to ask for their help. Even assuming that's true - and I still haven't seen the evidence to support it - why was that kind of "outreach" necessary for progressive Democrats to get involved in the general election campaign? What stopped anyone from just rolling up their sleeves and getting to work?

I can't count how many times during various election cycles that I initially got frustrated because I didn't think a campaign had responded quickly and enthusiastically enough to my offers to help. But each time, you know what I did? I got over myself and then located and turned up at the local campaign headquarters and volunteered - and they were always happy to have me and always put me to work doing something meaningful. It was often grunt work and not always very exciting or glamorous, but it was important and helped make a difference.

People who really care about making a difference don't wait around to be asked just the right way and then refuse to do it because they weren't asked nicely enough. They just roll up their sleeves and jump in. If someone thinks they're politically savvy enough to expect a campaign to go crawling to them for their help, they're savvy enough to know that general election campaigns don't and shouldn't have to devote time and resources on kissing their butts and they're savvy enough to figure out how to help a campaign without being asked. THAT's what activism is. Anything else is self-involved prima donna crap.

So, enough with the whining already. If you didn't do everything you could to stop Donald Trump from being elected, you only have yourselves to blame.

If a large group of blacks voted en masse for a black nationalist who preached hatred of whites

and, in so doing, helped to swing the election for a different candidate one way or another (since never in a million years would a black nationalist who preached hatred of whites garner enough votes to win anything), would white Democrats (or white Republicans for that matter) spend any serious time and effort "reaching out" to those black voters and tell their supporters they should be more sympathetic to their concerns and try harder to understand and embrace them?

Or would they say, "those people are crazy" and then do their damndest to generate enough votes from within their ranks and elsewhere to ensure that they could outvote the "crazies" the next time around?

"I'm so damned tired of trying to see it from the 'other side'"

"I am so damn tired of trying to see it from the 'other side,' of trying to discuss nuance, while they paint us and our candidates with the broadest of hateful brushes instead ... If you voted for Trump, Iím tired of trying to see things your way when you sit in your holier than thou churches/white power meet ups refusing to see mine. Am I lumping you in with white supremacists? No. You did that yourselves. You voted for a candidate endorsed by the KKK. For the rest of your lives you will know that you voted the same way as the KKK.

"Iím tired of pussy footing around what offends your morals while couching what offends mine. Because racism and homophobia and misogyny and xenophobia offend mine. Let me say it here: if you voted for trump I do think youíre racist. I do think youíre homophobic. I do think youíre misogynist. Racism, homophobia and misogyny are all spectrums and youíre on it. You might not be 'cheering while a black man gets lynched racist' but boy did you just sell them the rope and look the other way."

Let me repeat that for the benefit of my fellow Democrats who keep telling us to stop calling out Trump supporters so we don't offend them.


When I was a "millennial," I never expected candidates to "inspire" me

I never complained that Jimmy Carter wasn't exciting or that Walter Mondale didn't touch my heart or that Michael Dukakis didn't make me feel all warm inside. I just voted for them because I believed they would be much better for the country than the Republican candidate.

This "I'm not going to vote unless I feel completely connected to the Democratic candidate, who needs to talk directly to me and my needs if they want my support" is all new to me ...

As a black loyal Democrat, I say SCREW the white working class who insist on voting Republican

Screw them and leave them to themselves.

If I hear one more person insist that those folks aren't bigots but are just misguided souls who don't understand that they are voting against their interests and we must be patient and not antagonize them and especially don't get them riled up by being too obvious with our "identity politics" (i.e., acting like women and people of color are a valuable part of the coalition). Bullshit. They may be voting against their ECONOMIC interests, but they have other interests, too, interests that obviously substantially outweigh those economic concerns and they vote THOSE interests over and over. And its obvious that those interests are, for the most part, directly antithetical to mine. And the only way to assuage them is to kick me and people like me to the curb.

There are plenty - PLENTY - of Democratic voters who, if treated with even a minimum amount of respect and interest, will vote Democratic and walk through fire for the party. I am sick and tired, after years of loyally supporting the Democrats through thick and thin, even when they take us for granted, hearing some Democrats continue to insist that the party must fall all over itself chasing around after angry white men, racist white working class. Oh yes, yes, I know it's verboten to call them racist - they're just upset and confused and worried about jobs, blah, blah, blah . . . screw that, too. But funny thing - there are plenty of black and brown folk living in those same states facing the same economic woes and THEY didn't vote for Trump. So this isn't about economics.

Black and brown and lots of white voters will vote Democratic but need to be reached, need help overcoming cynicism and distrust (gee, I wonder why they feel that way) and - LISTEN TO THIS - desperately need help fighting and navigating the massive voter suppression that targets us.

So, please spare me having to listen to one more sentence about how we must set aside our interests and help the party attract people who have demonstrated election after election that they have no interest in aligning with a party that embraces us. If you have one group of people voting 50-60% for Trump and the Republicans and another group who vote 90+% for Hillary and the Democrats, why would you go begging the first group to change their minds and come over to our side when you can just reach out and encourage more of the second group who are a sure thing to go to the polls?

So, please. Stop trying to drag bigots into my party. I don't want them and I'm not going to move out of the way to make room for them. So just stop it.

Can we trash Trump for being married to a woman who puts up with him?

I mean, if we can go after Hillary for "enabling" her husband's bad behavior . . .

Does it seem the women reporters covering Trump feel "unshackled" to tell the truth about him?

I've noticed in the past year that whenever some of the women reporters covering the Trump campaign tried to speak honestly about what is really going on around Trump, they were shut down pretty quickly by the anchors. Katie Tur of MSNBC, in particular, frequently tried to call out the despicable behavior of Trump and his supporters when she covered his rallies. I remember, for example, one night about six months ago when she started talking about the dysfunction of the campaign - how reporters were penned in, not allowed near the candidate, loud music blasted on the ropeline so they couldn't hear what he said to his supporters and vice versa - she was shut down but quick.

But lately, Tur and several of the other women covering Trump have been much freer to talk about the reality of Trump world and they are doing it in harsh terms without challenge because not only do they have their facts pinned down perfectly after months of direct observation, the anchors and other reporters know they're telling the truth.

I definitely get the sense that they are actually relieved that they're finally being listened to at long last ...

I wish I could take a curse jar into Trump's green room right now

I'd be gettin' PAYED!!!
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