The anti-Trump resistance should stop bringing knives to a gunfight: Neil Macdonald
It's taken a group of teenaged school shooting survivors to drive that point home
Poor Laura Ingraham, the delicate snowflake.
The Fox News Channel manure-thrower has taken some time off, having been blasted right out of her cable-TV battlefield command post by a bunch of high school kids.
Such a satisfying outcome. And Ingraham, accustomed to siccing Fox's army of far-right orcs against the liberals and moderate conservatives they hate with such slavering intensity, plainly didn't see it coming, which made it all the more enjoyable to watch.
Ingraham, who began her career in university outing gay students, probably thought David Hogg, a 17-year-old survivor of the recent Florida high school massacre, would crumple, or maybe start crying — you know, the way sensitive liberals tend to do — when she unleashed one of her ad hominem attacks on him, mocking him for being rejected by UCLA.
David Hogg Rejected By Four Colleges To Which He Applied and whines about it. (Dinged by UCLA with a 4.1 GPA...totally predictable given acceptance rates.) <a href="https://t.co/wflA4hWHXY">https://t.co/wflA4hWHXY</a>—@IngrahamAngle
Instead, Hogg turned around and pasted her. He in fact out-Foxed her.
"Soooo, @IngrahamAngle, what are your biggest advertisers…" Hogg tweeted after her attack. He and his friends quickly assembled a list, and began a boycott.
It was exactly the sort of hardball that far-right activists play, and boy, did it work. Ingraham's advertisers began deserting her Fox show, even after she rushed out a sanctimonious apology "in the spirit of Holy Week," which was promptly rejected by Hogg.
Facing the sort of destruction visited on her former colleague Bill O'Reilly by an early form of #MeToo boycott, she abruptly announced she'd be taking a break to spend time with her family.
Over the weekend, Hogg tweeted: "Have some healthy reflections this Holy Week."
Fox News, with an utterly un-self-aware absence of irony, denounced the boycott as an "agenda-driven intimidation effort." When I read that one over breakfast, I nearly passed coffee through my nose.
Faces of an angry generation
Now, there's no doubt Hogg is cocky. Who wouldn't be in his place at his age? He and fellow Stoneman Douglas High School student Emma Gonzalez have gone from nobodies to the blazingly famous faces of an angry generation, kids who think their right to live in safety is more important than a gunned-up nation's right to target practice.
When Hogg and his fellow students announced a "March For Our Lives" march one month after the massacre, giant crowds turned out across the United States and around the world.
When Hogg called for town halls to discuss gun control over the Easter break, politicians in more than 70 Congressional districts were summoned by their constituents.
Hogg now has over 732,000 followers on Twitter. Gonzalez has over 1.5 million.
This is power, serious power. And it's driving Trump Nation nuts.
The flying monkeys who take their cues from Fox and Breitbart, and swarm in the service of America's boorish president, are determined to take down these damned young lefties, and are going about it with their usual viciousness.
They reserve a particular hatred for Emma Gonzalez. Not only is she a brave young woman, she dares to appear on camera with a shaved head, giving rise to "skinhead lesbian" attacks.
She wears a Cuban flag on her jacket, because she is of Cuban heritage. For that, of course, she is a traitor. When she posed for a photo tearing a rifle target in half, some clever drooler photoshopped the U.S. Constitution in the target's place and released the fake image onto the internet.
Happily, the students are not relenting.
Unlike the Occupy Wall Street movement, whose members frittered away strong political traction by talking themselves to death, Hogg, Gonzalez and company clearly intend to weaponize theirs and adopt the tactics of their enemies, which is exactly what needs to be done.
America needs a real resistance, not slacktivists who talk about it. The left (and moderate right) needs to ape the Tea Partiers, who understood how to take over and use power.
When President Donald Trump, disregarding the advice of his own Pentagon, bans transgender Americans from military service out of sheer bigotry, targeting some of society's most vulnerable, the resistance should in turn target specific Trump donors by boycotting and starving their businesses, and then go after military recruiters on campus. Make the response hurt.
Trump toadies and enablers in the media — like the preening Sean Hannity of Fox News and the Sinclair broadcasting executives who struck a deal with Trump that effectively trades access for fawning coverage — need to feel the same pain Ingraham has suffered.
When white nationalists, inspired by Trump, gather in American streets denouncing Jews and minorities, the resistance needs to keep showing up with cameras, identifying individual marchers on social media, and targeting their employers. Cost them their jobs. Flatten them.
Any store that offers military-style assault weapons should find it difficult to ever sell anything else.
Any business that sponsors, directly or indirectly, the National Rifle Association or any of its lickspittles in far-right media outlets like Breitbart or Infowars should be boycotted into extinction.
Americans live in the biggest, best-stocked marketplace in history; exercising choice in that marketplace gets results. Ask Laura Ingraham.
- Fox News host takes time off as advertisers flee amid school shooting Twitter feud
- March for Our Lives: Students lead massive rallies for gun control
But the real boycott has to be at the polls during the midterm elections this November. If Democrats and moderate Republicans mobilize and vote, the GOP's right flank will turn on Trump like a pack of hyenas.
Democrats who sat on their hands in 2016, arguing about the soul of the Democratic Party, the ones who just couldn't vote for Hillary Clinton because they found her "strident," have seen the result of their self-indulgence: a churlish chief executive who sits in the White House eating cheeseburgers, tweeting out inanities and insults, laughing at women who object to his serial sexual misconduct, inspiring white supremacists, persecuting innocent undocumented immigrants brought into the United States as infants, dismantling environmental and fiscal regulations, demonizing the FBI and the Justice and State departments and even the courts (and probably preparing pardons for his cohort and maybe even himself), and of course borrowing future generations into debt to grant America's richest people – his pals — the biggest tax cut in generations, against all conservative principle.
Of course, conservative principles, such as they are, don't concern Trump or his followers.
But money does, and power does, and the only way to thwart them is to take it away. It can be done.
This will be dangerous, make no mistake. Trump Nation will retaliate ferociously. Some flying monkeys would no doubt kill rather than give up their guns or privileges. Those high school kids are probably in some danger, bless them.
Anyway, Trump was right when he says he founded a movement. It's time for another one. And it might just be here.