Trickle Down Still Doesn’t Work

I just saw the horrible moment at today’s White House presser when a bulky male journalist elbowed a young female staffer because she was trying to do her job and pass the mic to somebody else. He physically swatted her away like an annoying fly.

To me, this is what workplace harassment looks like. The male journalist used the fact that he’s male, which makes him physically stronger, to shove a slender woman out of the way physically. He also used the fact that he is an important, older, known journalist and she’s a nameless, faceless worker nobody gives a crap about.

And so what, cue the brave resisters, the me-tooers, the anti-sexists, the pussy-hatters? Nope. I read a bunch of ultra-super-duper-progressive sources on this presser and. . . in every single one the male journalist is the victim and the female staffer is erased completely.

We’ve been promised that after we collectively weep about the fake dramas of filthy rich movie stars, the compassion for the victims of harassment who are neither rich nor famous will somehow trickle down and we will all benefit. I’m still waiting for the trickle but it seems that they are pissing on our heads instead.

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26 thoughts on “Trickle Down Still Doesn’t Work”

  1. CNN has put out a statement calling Trump’s behavior toward the reporter “disturbingly un-American” and adding, “We stand behind Jim Acosta and his fellow journalists everywhere.” Reporters on other networks have said that Acosta’s only problem was
    “simply trying to ask a question.”

    NOBODY on ANY cable news channel, including Fox, has even mentioned the manhandling of the female intern.

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    1. Actually, one person did mention the incident: Sarah Sanders put out a statement stating that Acosta has been banned from future press conferences because “President Trump believes in a free press [but] we will, however, never tolerate a reporter placing his hands on a young woman just trying to do her job as a White House intern…”

      CNN’s official response: “Press Secretary Sarah Saunders lied. She provided fraudulent accusations and cited an incident that never happened.”

      The video of the incident has been replayed in repeated loops a dozen times on all three cable news channels today, and somehow the intern is totally invisible to all the people commenting on it.

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      1. And after he pushed her – I wish somebody found out her name at least – she sat down at his feet like a dog. I understand she’s trained to do that not to clutter the line of vision but the whole thing looks atrociously bad.

        It’s the exact same thing as when Charles Murray visited Middlebury and a crazy crowd beat up a female professor who was just doing her job. And nobody noticed or cared! These are women who are trying to work and do their jobs. Aren’t we supposed to be for them?

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        1. “I wish somebody found out her name at least.”

          Bad idea, Clarissa! You know how the Internet and social media works nowadays. If her name were made public, she’d be getting hate mail and death threats for causing Acosta and CNN all that trouble — and for simply “enabling” Trump by working in his White House in the first place.

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      1. It’s the difference between talking and acting. It’s like the difference between Tucker Carlson and the people who are mobbing him. He says obnoxious things. But he doesn’t do anything to anybody. And they actually stalk and mob him.

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  2. I love your “trickle down justice” analogy. I’ve used it in conversation to sound more clever.

    Lower income women are 12 times more likely to face sexual harassment at work, yet all the focus is on celebrities. I was sexually harassed when I was a server and #metoo doesn’t speak to me and I can’t see what it’s done that could help people facing a situation like I was. Unionization would help low income people facing sexual harassment a lot more than celebrities getting fired or rich women talking about their feelings. Doesn’t feel like a full solution on its own but it would be a good start.

    It has had one positive effect in the form of consciousness raising. Our local women’s shelter says more people have been seeking help this year and they attribute it to #metoo.

    https://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2017/12/low-wage-workers-sexual-harassment/549158/

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      1. It wasn’t earth shatteringly terrible or anything; it helps that it didn’t come from my boss, who was non-creepy and weirded out by those dudes. I did decide to work elsewhere this summer rather than go back there though; I shouldn’t have to strategically avoid people to avoid my ass getting grabbed. The job also sucked on its own merits.

        Working at an Indian restaurant gave me both a love of Indian people and insight into why people would be hesitant about immigration. I never would’ve faced that level of sexual harassment in a business of American employees. I can only imagine it would be worse for a woman. When you bring in large numbers of people from another country, it changes the culture, and you might be importing some ideas and behaviors you don’t want.

        All that said, these aren’t my personal feelings about Indian immigration. Those creepy dudes weren’t representative of the majority; Indians who come to America often come here because they hate the misogyny of their home country, and it shows. It was only poorly integrated men who spoke no English who acted this way towards me, and not even most of them.

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        1. I’m glad you understand this. I find that it’s absolutely impossible to explain to men how daunting and tiresome it is to live in an environment like the one I experienced in my twenties in a very immigrant area of Montreal. It’s a mystery why people find it so easy to believe that a single groping incident from 40 years ago can turn one into a lifelong mental wreck while daily harassment for 5 years is not a big deal.

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          1. \ It’s a mystery why people find it so easy to believe that a single groping incident from 40 years ago can turn one into a lifelong mental wreck while daily harassment for 5 years is not a big deal.

            It is like was said in the article on militarization of antisemitism. The problem is “who” kills or harasses women or exhibits antisemitism rather than the act itself. If it fails to serve an agenda, it is ignored or, if impossible to ignore, minimized.

            Liked by 1 person

          2. I don’t think you can understand it unless you’ve experienced it, and most men haven’t experienced it and never will. But I’m pretty and many Indian men have rather…flexible ideas about sexual orientation. Telling stories might help people understand, but honestly I think if I’d heard my story before it wouldn’t have sounded that bad to me; it was rather mild. I tell stories from this job as humorous anecdotes, and honestly a lot of it is funny.

            But stories can’t capture how constantly feeling vulnerable and powerless wears down on you over time. Even when nobody did anything (there was only one guy who ever groped me, and I became good at avoiding him), just feeling their lecherous eyes on me every time I went into the kitchen felt degrading. Nobody should have to feel constantly on guard in a minimum wage job. I’m just thankful I didn’t work in the kitchen with them, but I had to go in there frequently and I had to brace myself every time.

            To me it makes it clear that we need to carefully screen immigrants and make sure they’re well integrated. Whatever America is doing seems to be working pretty well; I met hundreds of Indian men and most of them weren’t creeps. A working class woman with fewer positive experiences and very few job options might feel less charitable than me though. Middle class women are more likely to have positive experiences with immigrants; in America, you probably don’t experience this unless you’re working a job like the one I was at. Men are even less likely to understand.

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          3. Feel like if things keep going how they are I’m gonna be fired for my comments here one day. Oh well, not the first time I’ve said something controversial online. If not this, it would be something else.

            It wouldn’t be Indian immigrants getting offended, of course. Any woman from India would fully understand what I’m talking about.

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    1. I don’t watch anybody’s Twitter feeds because life’s too short. I watched the actual press conference. And I was shocked as I watched. My problem isn’t that he was violent with her – I don’t even remotely believe this qualifies as violence – but that she was trying to do her job and he didn’t recognize her authority to take away the mic. If the roles were reversed and the reporter was a slender young woman and the staffer a bulky male, she’d relinquish the mic in a second. All of the folks who pee themselves with delight over screeds like “Men Explain Things to Me” should have a reaction to this and they don’t.

      I agree that he should lose his accreditation because he wasn’t acting as a reporter. He was acting as a self-involved prick who wanted to self-promote. But that’s not just him. That was the majority of reporters present at the press conference. That’s why I’m saying it was a disgrace.

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        1. Absolutely. Trump like a model of restraint and profoundness not because he is but because these characters are so unappealing.

          But that doesn’t matter. This is a White House press conference,not tabloid journalism. If you are so overcome with emotion that you can’t control yourself, you shouldn’t be doing this job.

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            1. It’s his job to interview people for a living. If he can’t interview without needlessly antagonizing the subject, he’s not competent. If you are interviewing somebody you detest so much that you can’t keep yourself under control, the honest thing to do is cede the job to somebody less emotional.

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              1. When Obama was president, it would be very similar if the journalists repeated for two hours with very little variation, “But is it true that you are a socialist? Some people say you are a socialist. Is it true? But some people say it’s true. ” Obama would have kept his cool and answered endlessly, which is why I respect him and don’t respect Trump. But the reporters would be unprofessional in either case.

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  3. I first heard of this event via headlines like “White House releases doctored video”. It was only by coming here that I learned the original incident was Acosta refusing to let go of a microphone.

    There was a time I came here in order to see the views of a Hillary supporter. Now you’re alternative media 🙂

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    1. You are surprised? Imagine how it feels to me. But it doesn’t feel like I’ve changed but that everybody on my side has gone nuts.

      As for the doctored video, it was slowed down and contrast was added. This is routinely done with soccer game videos, for instance, when there is a contested moment in the game. And nobody says the videos are doctored.

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