Great Kids, (But) Don’t Get Cocky

Millions upon millions of women and girls, and some men and boys, took part in marches around the world yesterday. It was impressive seeing the pictures and finding out the stories behind why many marched. Chicago — so near geographically and yet soooo very far politically from where I was born and raised — had so many show up the city asked organizers to hold a rally instead as the march route couldn’t support that many people.

Photo: Catherine Turco , ABC-7 Chicago
Photo: Catherine Turco , ABC-7 Chicago

Impressive, ladies. Very. Impressive.

Perhaps predictably, the current U.S. administration was less impressed. Actually, the response was more like anger. Why? Not so much that so many more women showed up to march in Washington DC than people for the previous day’s inauguration, but rather because journalists had the temerity to point out the huge difference between the size of crowds attending the previous administration’s inaugurals in 2009 and 2013, and last Friday’s affair. Having so many more women also show up for the marches surely was salt in the long-nursed wounded ego of our thin-skinned chief executive.

So. What now? As the title suggests, this is not a time to rest on laurels. There is much work still to be done, and I’m afraid Americans do not play the Long Game very well.

Continue reading “Great Kids, (But) Don’t Get Cocky”

The Impenetrable Forrest

I looked at the comments.

I knew — know — not to look at the comments; little good can be found where anonymous trolls frolic. But … I looked. I did.

untitled-1The tweet from a former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives was, by and large, meaningless; flattery meant to compliment overtly and disparage covertly. Pretty tame compared to the vows to have opponents locked up or even executed by firing squad.

Still, I was curious so I scrolled through the replies. Oh, my. One in particular caught my eye, left me shaking my head. Was it just the gloating of a “poor winner”? I clicked onto this person’s timeline and saw a whole lot of negativity about the former President & First Lady. No surprise, that, but it seemed mostly centered on something the former First Lady said in 2008 while her husband was still a candidate for the office.

OK. I’m not going to address the quote; as a former reporter I know how much context matters when looking at someone’s words. The background and life experiences of both speaker and listener are important; so, too, can be what they had for breakfast. Anyway,  in this case there is a person who has had a specific gripe about someone from the opposite side of the political spectrum (very obvious scrolling through past tweets) for the past eight years. Hey, that’s American politics these days, right?

Then I thought again about it. Eight years. Eight yearsEight years.I don’t remember many details of 2008, certainly not passing statements that angered me uttered by public figures I dislike (<cough> any Kardashian <cough> for example <cough>). But this person not only held onto their disgust and loathing, but actually kept that hate-flame burning bright enough to call it up at a moment’s notice when the opportunity was presented.

That’s when I realized we were on the wrong side of the Impenetrable Forrest. Continue reading “The Impenetrable Forrest”