Quit Yer Whining! Liberals Did Better In Mississippi Than You Think!


Racist lynch humorist Cindy Hyde Smith won, as expected, Mississippi's US Senate runoff yesterday against Democrat Mike Espy. Yeah, I know I promised I wasn't writing anything else about Senator Skeletor, but why are you keeping track of what I say? Stop stalking me.

Hyde Smith's margin of victory was relatively narrow (54 percent to Espy's 46 percent) for a deep-red state that Donald Trump carried by almost 20 points. It seemed no poll tax was too steep to keep black people from the ballot box, even if we did come up short. And we made Republicans spend money -- real US dollars not Confederate trumpaloos -- on an election in Mississippi. As Richard III said, "If not to heaven, then hand in hand to hell." That's what a resistance looks like. Make them sweat and fight for every win. Stacey Abrams's "defeat" in Georgia is not a total loss when it registers new voters and exposes the depths of Republican corruption.

The Mississippi special election exposed to the world the state's longstanding racial dynamics. Sunlight is an excellent disinfectant, but like a frat boy's bathroom, one thorough scrubbing isn't enough to fully sanitize Mississippi's politics.

Mike Espy understood this, as you can tell from his concession speech last night.

"When this many people show up, when this many people stand up, when this many people speak up, it is not a loss. It is a moment," he told supporters at the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum. "So we are not going to stop moving our state forward."

Most media accounts of the runoff describe it as "racially charged." That's what they call elections where one candidate does something racist and the other candidate is black. It's also a popular euphemism for Trump's racist rhetoric. CNN said his odious midterm ad demonizing immigrants was "racially charged." Trump's campaign rally for Hyde-Smith this week had a lot of "racially charged" moments. He insisted that native son Espy, who has centuries-long family ties to the state, just plain doesn't "fit in" to Mississippi.

Trump's "coded language" isn't subtle. He tries about as hard as the devil who'd pass himself off as human with names like "Louis Cipher" or "Dr. Natas." Trump claimed Espy is "far left" because Republicans believe the entire political spectrum is "mainstream" (them), "far left," and Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez. That's another advantage of this Senate race seeing so much daylight: Republicans across the country have had to embrace Hyde-Smith as "mainstream." Republican pundit Hugh Hewitt defended Hyde-Smith, insisting that she is a "mainstream conservative" and he's not "embarrassed" by her. Of course, Hugh Hewitt's not "embarrassed" by anything.

It's important for mopey liberals to see Yankee Republicans rallying to support a Southern racist and doing so without any semblance of shame. Like unpopular kids at school, liberals can be too quick to distance themselves from the perceived weakest link in their group. Maybe then the "cool" kids will like them. We've seen some of this with backlash from Democrats toward Ocasio-Cortez, who runs around in fancy shoes with soles on them. Her "three chambers of government" gaffe, while a great title for a Wu-Tang clan album, is nothing compared to Hyde-Smith "joking" about public hangings. Yet Hyde-Smith received total support from her party. Utterly useless Chuck Schumer found time to upbraid Maxine Waters on the Senate floor but was silent after actual senator Hyde-Smith's repulsive comments.

Perspective is key here. Too many liberals from other mothers attempt to write off the South. After Espy's loss, there was a lot of the tired takes that "blue states should stop supporting racist red states." This really offends me as a native Southerner, especially since states like Oregon or even Maine are just a Portland away from being another Mississippi. The Washington Post suggested that Hyde-Smith's win proved "how solidly conservative the state is." "Conservative" is yet another euphemism. They mean "white." Across the Bible Belt, there's a clear racial schism in how folks vote. Is it really as reductive as "liberal" vs. "conservative"? It's not as if every black Southerner who reliably votes Democrat spends their weekends dancing in Pride parades or sipping Chardonnay at the opera.

People like Stacey Abrams and Mike Espy will be major figures in history, while Cindy Hyde-Smith will just be a footnote. This is a battle we're winning. It's slow-going and sometimes torturous, yes, but we're making progress. We're breaking through the seemingly impenetrable wall of voter suppression and assorted vestiges of Jim Crow.

Thanks in part to Abrams, we already have Lucy McBath sitting in a seat once held by Newt Gingrich. So instead of writing off the people of all races who shed blood to register voters and get them to the polls with almost Altamont-like lines, let's join them in imagining a MIssissippi that shares a different face to the world. It's what Trump and Hewitt fear most. And it's coming sooner than we think.

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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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