Alan Dershowitz Wishes Maxine Waters Would Stop Murdering Him At Martha's Vineyard

Culture Wars

Alan Dershowitz, whose claim to notoriety these days is his self-inflicted role as a professional Donald Trump defender, has officially become a laughingstock after whining in an op-ed for The Hill that his fancy pants friends on Martha's Vineyard are "shunning" him on the orders of Maxine Waters.

Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) recently told her supporters to hound President Trump's Cabinet members wherever they find them: "They're not going to be able to go to a restaurant, they're not going to be able to stop at a gas station, they're not going to be able to shop at a department store. The people are going to turn on them, they're going to protest, they're going to absolutely harass them."

Waters does not speak for all Democrats or liberals. Nor do those who threw Sarah Huckabee Sanders out of the Red Hen restaurant. Neither do those who have harassed other members of the Trump administration. But these rude extremists are a symptom of the times. The divisions have gotten so bad that many on both sides refuse to speak or listen to those on the other side. Either you are for Trump or against him, and that is all some people need to know to make judgments about you.

I know this because I have experienced this firsthand on Martha's Vineyard

These "rude extremists" have grown in just a couple weeks from a few hecklers in an upscale Mexican restaurant and the staff of a farm-to-table spot in Virginia to the entire summer colony of Martha's Vineyard. Waters is building an army, and it's rising in strength.

Dershowitz goes on to list his Democratic "bonafides," which includes voting for and "contributing handsomely" to Hillary Clinton, but laments that this was still not enough to keep Trump's stench from clinging to him.

So they are shunning me and trying to ban me from their social life on Martha's Vineyard. One of them, an academic at a distinguished university, has told people that he would not attend any dinner or party to which I was invited. He and others have demanded "trigger warnings" so that they can be assured of having "safe spaces" in which they will not encounter me or my ideas. Others have said they will discontinue contributions to organizations that sponsor my talks.

This is all familiar to me, since I lived through McCarthyism in the 1950s, when lawyers who represented alleged communists on civil libertarian grounds were shunned. Some of these lawyers and victims of McCarthyism lived on Martha's Vineyard. I never thought I would see McCarthyism come to Martha's Vineyard, but I have.

McCarthyism, or the second Red Scare, kicked off in 1947 when President Truman signed Executive Order 9835, which was the first general "loyalty" program in the federal government. He'd hoped to quiet Republican critics who thought Democrats were "soft" on communism, which by the way never achieved the level of power in the US that Trump's GOP has. You'll recall that Trump also likes loyalty oaths. He demands mandatory expressions of patriotism from NFL players and twists the arms of team owners so there'll be penalties for those who don't comply. It's not a coincidence that Colin Kaepernick is described as having been "blacklisted" by the NFL. So, it's weird that Dershowitz can claim it's only the pushback against Roy Cohn's protege that reminds him of McCarthyism.

We always lose our heroes. I was once a big fan of Dershowitz or at least the person Ron Silver brought to life in 1990's Reversal of Fortune, a favorite movie of mine. Silver's Dershowitz was a precursor to later Aaron Sorkin protagonists in "The West Wing" and "The Newsroom": The temperamental, brilliant man always ready to passionately lecture women until they melted in his arms.

My younger self slightly envied Jeremy Irons's coolly sophisticated Claus von Bulow but it was Silver's rough and tumble Dershowitz that I admired. Yes, I understood that movies aren't real life, but I'd also read Dershowitz's 1985 book "Reversal of Fortune: Inside the von Bulow Case," upon which the film was based, so my opinion that Dershowitz was a non-schmuck felt reasonably well-informed.

It never bothered me that Dershowitz defended men such as von Bulow, O.J. Simpson, or even Trump. I appreciated that he advocated on behalf of larger legal principles, even if the accused might credibly fit the description of a slimeball. I felt he was doing a service, keeping us honest. It's important even now that in our zeal to stop Trump we don't shred civil liberties along the way and in effect "frame a guilty man," as one of Dershowitz's students in the film speculates happened to von Bulow.

No, my issue is with Dershowitz joining every other "snowflake" Trump supporter or enabler and playing the victim. The well-heeled who willingly associate with Trump not-so-ironically whine about banishment from the exclusive, much desired "liberal bubble." It's kind of pathetic. Imagine if Milton's Satan had said, "Better to reign in hell than serve in heaven, I guess, but the other angels don't even invite me to their parties anymore."

It's especially depressing when you contrast this pity party with the ending of Reversal of Fortune: After successfully overturning von Bulow's murder conviction, Dershowitz rebuffs -- like a boss -- Claus's social overtures.

"One thing, Claus: Legally, this was an important victory. Morally, you're on your own." That's awesome. You'll notice that Dershowitz doesn't grudgingly accept the offer for lunch with von Bulow because he doesn't want to look like a "rude extremist."

I think what Dershowitz is experiencing socially right now isn't McCarthyism but more like what President Eisenhower called "McCarthywasm," the period after McCarthy's fall from whatever grace he ever had. In The Politics of Fear: Joseph R. McCarthy and the Senate, Robert Griffith describes how in the final years of his life, McCarthy's former colleagues actively avoided him and his speeches on the Senate floor were delivered to a "near-empty chamber."

I can let others debate the legal merits of Dershowitz's continued defense of Trump. But morally, Alan, you're on your own.

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Stephen Robinson

Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Seattle. However, he's more reliable for food and drink recommendations in Portland, where he spends a lot of time for theatre work. His co-adaptation of "Jitterbug Perfume" by Tom Robbins is playing NOW at Pioneer Square's Cafe Nordo. All Wonketters welcome.

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Once upon a time... about ten years ago, a group of entirely ridiculous men burst onto the scene wearing stupid hats and telling men that wearing stupid hats and telling men that walking up to women in bars and insulting ("negging") them would get them laid. This did not last long, as women also had televisions and computers and were completely aware of these tricks as well, so when some ass came up to us in a bar and said "Hey, nice nails, are they real?" we would laugh and laugh and loudly announce "Oh my god, this guy just tried to neg me! Can you believe that shit? HEY EVERYONE, THIS GUY JUST TRIED TO NEG ME!" and then refer to him as "Mystery" the whole night.

Most of the men who tried that shit only did so a few times before realizing that it wasn't going to work, and thus moved on to other things. Perhaps things that did not involve furry hats and coming off as a huge creep. We may never know, because I would assume that those who tried it are now extremely embarrassed and would never, ever admit to this to us.

Still, there were a few men willing to eat that shit up, as well as some grifters willing to take advantage of that. Said grifters tended to be extremely misogynistic and seemed more like they were teaching men how to be as despised by women as they were than teaching them how to actually be liked by women.

Some of them, like Roosh V, a creepy weirdo who actually does live in his mom's basement, actively encouraged men to rape women who were intoxicated to the point of being obviously unable to consent.

However, even that branch of the PUA tree is wilting away. Many "self-help" style PUA forums like Nextasf and RSDnation are shutting down or have already shut down. In March, Chateau Heartiste, a batshit crazy PUA turned White Nationalist/Alt-Right blog was shut down by Wordpress. This week, rape advocate Roosh V (whom you may recall once called yours truly a "Wonkette typist/clown face, would not bang") announced that he was renouncing his PUA ways and devoting himself to Jesus. He explained to the forum he manages that he would no longer be allowing anyone to discuss premarital "fornication."

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'Baby Geniuses' star Jon Voight took to Twitter early this morning to proclaim his undying love for Donald Trump, probably because there is no one left in his life who will listen to him talk about this, or anything else, in person. In this video rant, Voight encouraged members of the Republican Party, whom he apparently thinks are the only real citizens of the United States, to stand by Donald Trump and "acknowledge the truth" that he is the best President since Abraham Lincoln.

Part ONE:

People of the Republican Party, I know you will agree with me when I say our president has our utmost respect and our love. This job is not easy. For he's battling the left and their absurd words of destruction. I've said this once and I'll say this again. That our nation has been built on the solid ground from our forefathers, and there is a moral code of duty that has been passed on from President Lincoln. I'm here today to acknowledge the truth, and I'm here today to tell you my fellow Americans that our country…

Oh no, not our absurd words of destruction!

Part DEUX:

is stronger, safer, and with more jobs because our President has made his every move correct. Don't be fooled by the political left, because we are the people of this nation that is witnessing triumph. So let us stand with our president. Let us stand up for this truth, that President Trump is the greatest president since President Lincoln.

Does Jon Voight not know there have been... other presidents? Can he name them? Because really, it does not sound like it. Does he also not know that a very big chunk of the Republican Party actually does not care very much for Abraham Lincoln? Namely those defenders of Confederate statues that Trump called "very fine people?" Also, did he intentionally diss their beloved Ronald Reagan?

Who can know? Who can even tell what he is trying to say or why he is trying to say it. He doesn't appear to have tweeted much since 2016, so I'm guessing whoever's job it was to keep him from tanking his career quit. Either that... or after filming the seventh season of Ray Donovan, he found out it's going to be canceled or his character is getting killed off or something and he is now free to be a jackass? I don't know, I haven't watched the show, although my parents are very into it and mad that I haven't watched it. Literally all I know about it is that it has something to do with Boston, because they keep mentioning that to me like it's a selling point.

It seems useless at this point to note that the people who scream their faces off about how bad it is for Hollywood celebs to support liberal causes, and how they should keep their politics to themselves, etc. etc. make a way bigger deal than normal people do whenever a Big Time Hollywood Celebrity like Jon Voight or, uh, Scott Baio, supports their cause. Mostly because they're the only ones who have elected a reality TV star and the star of Bedtime for Bonzo (who by the way, also once practically ruined a perfectly good Bette Davis movie with his bad acting. Which is not to say that Dark Victory is not fantastic and probably the best thing to watch if you want to sob your face off, but he was very bad in it.) to run the country.

But we might as well do that anyway, because it actually never stops being funny.

[Jon Voight Twitter]

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