In a sexist world, a woman who attempts an equal partnership with a man is likely to be shortchanged. Even a strong woman. Even a feminist woman. It can be done, but the odds are against her.
Ruth Bader Ginsberg, like Nancy Pelosi, like Liz Warren, chose to partner with good men who put her career first. They were lucky to make a good choice young.
Kesha, like Tammy Wynette, like Tina Turner, chained young to shitty men who put her career last, chose to break those chains at great personal and artistic cost, for greater personal and artistic freedom.
If you have a can of gasoline, you understand architecture just fine.
If you have an atomic bomb and the plane to carry it in, you understand Hiroshima well enough.
If you can aim a gun, you understand human anatomy splendidly. And if you aren’t any good with a pistol, there’s always a shotgun.
Complaining about Donald Trump being stupid and ignorant while he’s kicking your ass shows he understands playground rules better than you do. Who do you think is going to save you from the bully if there is no teacher on the scene?
I don’t care for horror movies. I don’t watch them. But I read about everything, and I know they teach this lesson:
When the call is coming from inside the house, no one can save you but yourself.
Don’t take that too literally. Horror movies set it up so that the heroine–that’s you, in the current horror show–are stripped of your friends, your family, all the cloud of support around you. That’s how moral fiction works, stripped to the essentials to teach a lesson.
In This Real Life? You have friends. You have family. You have the kindness of strangers. You have human solidarity, one of the three foundations of my own spirituality. Thanks to all that, you have agency and power. You’d best use them.
Or lose them. It’s up to you. It’s always been you, my love.
There are two separate steps in what we call “impeachment”.
The first is impeachment. It’s carried out by the House. That’s the investigation, the preparation of a case. It’s like a grand jury, where evidence is presented and an indictment can be issued. It doesn’t have to rise to the standards of a criminal trial. Since the last House abandoned its oversight duties, the onslaught of oversight requests are the beginnings of that process. Whether there’s a formal impeachment at the end of it, we’re having that now.
Bill Clinton, Richard Nixon, and Andrew Johnson were all impeached, and rightfully so. Nixon committed actual crimes; Clinton creepily perjured himself; Johnson helped the South regain what it had rightfully lost. All of them committed grave irresponsibilities while in office. There’s no doubt in my mind Donald Trump’s misdeeds rise to that standard. His venality combines the criminality of Nixon, the faithlessness of Clinton, and the disloyalty of of Johnson.
I expect Trump will be impeached, just as those three were.
The impeachment itself is a significant punishment. It has stained all three men’s reputations, not from the vote to impeach, but from the public exposure of their unfitness to hold office. It ended Nixon’s political career. It should have ended Clinton’s–the party should have demanded his resignation once the process was over, so Al Gore could have run as an incumbent, unchained from a shitty man–and it did damage him. Johnson was already weakened.
The second step is trial. It’s carried out by the Senate. No president has ever been convicted by the Senate. Neither will Trump be, barring some smoking gun we don’t know about. He’s obscured the record by obstructing justice.
Nixon deserved conviction. He only avoided it by resignation. Clinton didn’t. His shittiness was revealed to be ugly but truly small, like him. Johnson…I have no strong opinion about what fate he deserved. His misdeeds were purely political.
But that process of trial in the Senate, that is important, not least because it focuses national attention on a process more easily understood than investigation. It allows the facts to be laid out, much like a trial, for judgement.
I’ll follow Pelosi’s lead on whether to impeach. She’s a fighter who’s been Trump’s most effective political opponent.
Till then, keep on moving forward. Forward with investigation. Forward with the next election. Forward with building a fighting Party that doesn’t roll over and pee itself when threatened. Forward with popular mobilization to ensure that.