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Presidential contender Kamala Harris held her first official campaign event in South Carolina, a key state in the upcoming Democratic primaries. Friday night, she spoke to a crowd of roughly 1,000 at a town hall at Royal Missionary Baptist Church in North Charleston. She reaffirmed her support for sensible gun safety laws, including universal background checks and closing the "Charleston loophole." She fielded questions from voters about how she'd address mass incarceration. Actual issues were discussed, but then she went and spoiled it all by doing something stupid like eating in public.

Harris filled her tummy with Lowcountry goodness at Rodney Scott's BBQ. Later her press secretary, Ian Sams, tweeted a photo of the senator adding a hefty dollop of Texas Pete to her collard greens because she's civilized. Some chose to interpret this as "pandering." Because some are literally killing us with this.


Sams probably just tagged Texas Pete in his tweet because he's a professional who knows how social media works. It wasn't an attempt to go "ooh, ooh, our candidate's black" because we can all see that. Sams used to work for Hillary Clinton, who had her own hot sauce drama during her 2016 campaign, so there's been speculation about some sort of "neoliberal shill" connection. That's silly.

Candice Aiston on Medium wondered how we'd examine Harris's record if we did something crazy like actually trust women. The "Kamala is a cop" narrative, for instance, probably wouldn't gain any traction. Taking this further, we wouldn't presume she lied about the music she listened to while smoking pot. Who remembers anything when they're high? If you're boasting total recall, you were sold some bad shit. We'd also believe she genuinely enjoys hot sauce and not see nefarious motives in someone pointing it out. Humanizing candidates in the eyes of voters has been a part of presidential campaigns long before women dared to run themselves. Al Gore lost to George W. Bush because people thought he was an unfeeling android who was unable to use contractions. Bush, on the other hand, was someone people wanted to "have a beer with," and that's why global warming will kill us all.

Last week, Kirsten Gillibrand was campaigning in Columbia, South Carolina. She met with 20 black leaders for a small business roundtable at Kiki's Chicken and Waffles. When the food arrived, Gillibrand started eating her chicken with a fork but she noticed that everyone else was going forkless. She asked her host what the protocol was and then happily dove in fingers first. OMG, that was so nice. We already crushed hard on Gillibrand, but now we just love her to death. She's so nice. She notices what people around her are doing and wants to make them comfortable. How could anyone not see this and think, "What a nice woman"?

We declined to play Rich's misogynist game show "Scheming Shrew or Desperate Harpy?" because the only possible response to his "serious question" is an extended middle finger.

Jonathan Martin of the New York Times was slightly less gross than Rich but still obnoxious. He snidely wondered if this was "really" the first time she's eaten fried chicken in 50 years. (See, Gillibrand is old, y'all. Never forget that she's a woman who cared so little about her constituents she willingly aged.)

Eating with the "average Joe" is a vital part of not just campaigning for president but governing as one. The ritual of sharing a meal connects politicians with their supporters. If we scrutinize women candidates to death, if we comment negatively on the smallest action, we are denying them the chance to appear human before voters. That is perhaps a feature not a bug.

Saturday, Harris visited women-owned shops in Columbia. She tried on a rainbow sequined jacket at Styled by Naida, and conservatives lost their minds. See, shopping is frivolous. It's something women do, after all. It's not at all the same as a male politician visiting a male-owned small business and sampling its products, which has happened during every election in modern history.

Harris looked great in the jacket, so much like our late mother, in fact, we had to take a moment. Obviously, her detractors claim the press is in the tank for her. Yet, if she'd looked silly, her political opponents would've made the video go viral all by themselves. Wearing Joseph's amazing technicolor dreamcoat is a bold move. Harris later took the jacket home with her because she's awesome.

Critics now claim that Harris is too much of a weed-smoking, hot-sauce chugging "fun auntie" to be taken seriously as president. Wasn't she a hard-assed cop just days ago? Women candidates are apparently either not likable/relatable or too likable/relatable. It's the Goldilocks conundrum except there's no "just right" setting.

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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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