That last post, it turns out, does not do justice to how angry I’ve suddenly become tonight. There was no time, earlier, as I was off on my weekly mental health trip to the zoo, and I do tend to treat that as a protected environment for self-care. But within minutes of putting up that last post, I inflicted an increasingly-hostile rant upon my Twitter followers.
What I said at the end of that post is, I guess, my problem with the Democrats right now: I feel like they do not seem capable of any sort of political action that is either commensurate with or proportional to the scope of the immorality, or amorality, with which the country is faced. Just more hearings in that committee or this committee that no one is watching, because Nancy Pelosi is afraid of impeachment. Just another June (because we already did this last year) of putting on a show of being shocked and horrified at the conditions of America’s concentration camps, then going on the cable news shows to cluck about how bad is this administration.
Today’s critically-important Hispanic Caucus trip needs to be the beginning of Democrats in the House and the Senate (although when’s the last time we’ve had any indication that members on the Senate side were capable of any kind of coherent or cohesive collective action) rising to meet the severity of the abuse, both of power and, more pressingly, of people. And that’s going to mean Democrats need to stop being so God damned afraid of nonsense.
There are human beings in camps. There are human beings in padlocked cages. There are women being told to drink out of toilets. There are racist and inhumane agents laughing it up on Facebook. Just how much will it take for Democrats to to step up to this moment?
Or, like lawless abuse of presidential power, do Nancy Pelosi and Steny Hoyer view concentration camps as just another thing to litigate in the 2020 election?
Pelosi today tweeted about only three things: the Post-9/11 GI Bill, Hong Kong, and Medicare. Not a single mention of the Hispanic Caucus delegation. Hoyer, for his part, did retweet the Caucus, but only to call it “deeply alarming” and to reassure everyone that the Democrats “will continue to work to hold the Trump [administration] accountable”, something they this far have completely failed to do.
This is how feckless politicians speak. It means absolutely fucking nothing.
It’s insufficient and threatens to minimize the gravity of this moment’s moral challenge, but my pop culture brain (because that’s often how my brain tries to handle the pressure of things) keeps screaming Ellen Ripley’s dialogue to an executive functionary of Weyland-Yutani.
These people are dead, Burke! Don’t you have any idea what you’ve done here? Well, I’m gonna make sure that they nail you right to the wall for this! You’re not gonna sleaze your way out of this one! Right to the wall!
What I can’t tell tonight is whether I am internally screaming this at the Trump administration, or at congressional Democrats. I just know that if we get to the point where we have to talk about them being dead–any more about them being dead, I mean–it will be too late for any of it to matter.