So as he flails like an obese turtle on its back, and plots not paying the piper – Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany tweeted “GOD IS IN CONTROL!” But as President-Elect Joe Biden knocks on the door – if I believed in deities or that to date the Coronavirus hasn’t taken 240,00 American lives, the irony would be laughable.
If you haven’t heard of McEnany, imagine a Serena Joy and Aunt Lydia love-child. She was Trump’s third press secretary, and if you thought Sarah Huckabee Sanders malodorous – it was third time lucky with Karen of the Academy of Holy Hearts. McEnany may look harmless, but don’t let that all-American sweet as apple pie demeanour fool you. The acceptable face of Trumpism is as sour as they come. And her pious, unblinking fanaticism terrifies me.
Furthermore, when it comes to the art of gaslighting, she rivals her ex-boss. As his mouthpiece, she was as adept as any abuser. Trump is an abomination but in many ways I find McEnany a greater assault on my senses. Obviously money can buy a mute Melania, so I get anywhere but back to the village, put out and shut up approach. And to be fair, it was Sex and the City’s Samantha Jones that said “they don’t call it a job for nothing.” But what’s McEnany’s excuse?
Harvard Law educated and as sharp as a bear trap, she could have wielded that intellect like a sword. But rather than lead by example, or follow in the footsteps of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg or Vice President Elect Kamala Harris, she chose a piggyback from Trump.
However, the record speed with which she went from denouncing his politics to steadfastly defending them is telling. One could almost be mistaken for thinking this plaster saint, like Mike Pence, laundered Trump’s sins in order to get ahead. Perhaps she and Melania aren’t that different after all.
I ask no favor for my sex. All I ask of our brethren is that they take their feet off our necks.– Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg
Like the gaslight, religion dulls rational thought. Justice Amy Coney Barrett – conservative puppet and Handmaid within The People of Praise; an obscure Catholic sect- is case in point. The latest Supreme Court Judge, named to replace the phenomenal Ginsburg. In Barrett’s defence, this is a near impossible task, but despite her impressive résumé, she fails miserably. Hastily appointed by Trump and his cronies – they aimed and cocked her with women’s reproductive rights squarely in the crosshairs.
As a woman I desperately want to salute Barrett’s ascent to the highest of male echelons. But when men let us out of our cages so they can take the credit; only for women to willingly walk back behind bars and hand them the keys; it’s difficult not to see it as the ultimate betrayal.
But I get it, religion is toxic, and its effects will last long past this pandemic and the next.
The name virus is derived from the Latin word meaning ‘slimy liquid or poison’. In Biology, poisons are defined as substances that cause death, injury or harm to organisms. Poisons that are widely dispersed are known as toxic pollution. Subsequently, chronic poisoning is the long-term repeated or continuous exposure to a poison; where symptoms do not occur immediately or after each exposure.
Some linguistic anthropologists define religion as a language virus, one which re-wires neural pathways in the brain and dulls critical thinking. We see the effects of this everyday, in almost every country around the world; from extremists to small town bigots. So given the number of atrocities committed and excused in the name of religion, it is difficult not to conclude society has been poisoned.
Church and State should be kept entirely separate, but it is a futile concept. Religion is big business, and there is power in politics. God Incorporated is worth billions, in the U.S. religion is worth more than Google and Apple combined. Christ, the Catholic Church in Rome is an independent state with its own monarchy and currency. In part, thanks to the unwavering support of Evangelical Christians, we had to endure Trump for four years and witness the rise in right-wing white supremacy.
Here, Northern Ireland is the perfect example of religious state control. The two largest denominations, the Church of England and the Roman Catholic Church reign supreme, still legislate with rules set from as as far back as when we thought the world was flat. Equally, none of the the main churches supports the law of land over equal marriage for gay couples or supports the majority wishes for assisted dying for the terminally ill.
I’ve written before of my disdain for religion. For a myriad of reasons, it offends – war and religious violence. The permissible systematic abuse of children. Mother and Baby Homes and illegal forced adoptions – the profits of which went straight back into the church coffers. The restrictions on birth control, thus knowingly acerbating the spread of HIV and famine. The global violation of Human Rights. The denial of Science and Climate Change. The obscene non-altruistic wealth, and preposterous pomposity. The futility of prayer and hypocrisy of absolution. The illogical ego-centricity of ‘God’s Plan’. Or its perverse participation in the discrimination, repression and oppression of women.
Having read Notorious RBG – The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg; what struck me, apart from her acute intellect and steely stoicism, was her husband Marty. This was a man as rare as a blue diamond, and their marriage was the definition of a partnership.
“I betray no secret in reporting that, without him, I would not have gained a seat on the Supreme Court,” Ruth wrote in her NYT op-ed. Upon his death, when Ruth went to the hospital to make arrangements, she found a note which read
My dearest Ruth –
You are the only person I have loved in my life, setting aside, a bit, parents and kids and their kids, and I have admired and loved you almost since the day we first met at Cornell some 56 years ago.
What a treat it has been to watch you progress to the very top of the legal world!!
I will be in JH Medical Center until Friday, June 25, I believe, and between then and now I shall think hard on my remaining health and life, and whether on balance the time has come for me to tough it out or to take leave of life because the loss of quality now simply overwhelms. I hope you will support where I come out, but I understand you may not. I will not love you a jot less.
I can identify with their relationship, for I have my own Marty, our sons raised in the same vein. And for any Incels out there, he is neither sycophantic nor a doormat. He is just a man comfortable in his own skin. But knowing the difference this makes, does leave you with many what if’s?
Lord, grant me the confidence of a mediocre white man– Woman Throughout History
What if Eve wasn’t the malefactress? What if we had a world full of Marty’s? What if blokes didn’t have to man up and boys do cry? What if men embraced affection instead of raising a fist? What if we could be anything instead of just a fuck? What if, above the door it read Father and Daughters? What if having a daughter was seen as a blessing rather than a burden? What if system wasn’t designed to break us? What if we stopped applauding and rewarding mediocre men? What if they worshipped us instead of trying to kill their lust? My hubby is a dish, however I still have a fondness for Chris Hemsworth. But you don’t see me screaming “Witch, Witch, Witch” every time he appears on screen.
What happens when there are no if’s, but’s or maybe it’s because you’re a lady?
According to the Harvard Business Review “countries with women in leadership have suffered six times fewer confirmed deaths from Covid-19 than countries with governments led by men.” It appears that our female-lead countries have given a stellar performance during a time of global crisis. Who knew?
Biden trumped Trump, but Jan 2021 is a long way way off, and there is a coup to be had. And if a Civil War doesn’t end us, Biden is the 46th man to take helm, so nothing revelatory. Kamala on the other hand…Biden knows the score. I’m willing to bet a hat, Harris 2024 is where’s it’s at. And as an added bonus, I will no longer have to watch House of Cards, Season 6 on repeat. They say behind every great man there is a woman, pushing. But life also imitates art…
“And to the woman most responsible for my presence here today — my mother, Shyamala Gopalan Harris, who is always in our hearts. When she came here from India at the age of 19, maybe she didn’t quite imagine this moment.
But she believed so deeply in an America where a moment like this is possible. So, I’m thinking about her and about the generations of women — Black Women. Asian, White, Latina, and Native American women throughout our nation’s history who have paved the way for this moment tonight.
Women who fought and sacrificed so much for equality, liberty, and justice for all, including the Black women, who are too often overlooked, but so often prove that they are the backbone of our democracy.
All the women who worked to secure and protect the right to vote for over a century: 100 years ago with the 19th Amendment, 55 years ago with the Voting Rights Act, and now, in 2020, with a new generation of women in our country who cast their ballots and continued the fight for their fundamental right to vote and be heard.
Tonight, I reflect on their struggle, their determination and the strength of their vision — to see what can be unburdened by what has been — I stand on their shoulders.
And what a testament it is to Joe’s character that he had the audacity to break one of the most substantial barriers that exists in our country and select a woman as his vice president.
But while I may be the first woman in this office, I won’t be the last.
Because every little girl watching tonight sees that this is a country of possibilities.
And to the children of our country, regardless of your gender, our country has sent you a clear message:
Dream with ambition, lead with conviction, and see yourself in a way that others might not see you, simply because they’ve never seen it before.
And we will applaud you every step of the way.“