Just like ev­ery­one else I have a the­o­ry about What It Mean­s, but I al­so have a sto­ry and a cool pic­ture to il­lus­trate.

Vancouver’s Roots ‘N’ Wings choir performing on Jan 21, 2017

We go to a few choir con­cert­s, since my wife sings in one and is part of that so­cial net­work. On Jan­uary 21st in a two-choir show, the sec­ond half fea­tured Roots ‘N’ Wings, an all-women en­sem­ble. They opened with just a few singers on stage, then the rest came up the aisles, singing Ain’t Gon­na Let No­body Turn Me Around (one of the Free­dom Songs), some with the hat­s, some with sign­s.

The crowd came alive, on their feet, clap­ping and yelling, singing along. The choir fed on it and five min­utes of pret­ty pure ec­sta­sy en­sued. My heart was in­stant­ly ful­l.

Ear­li­er that day, my wife and daugh­ter were in the lo­cal march; I was proud of them. I didn’t go be­cause I want­ed to be part of those pow­er­ful sea-of-women’s-faces vi­su­als by not be­ing in it; any­how some­one had to clean up and make din­ner.

What the march meant · I think it’s ob­vi­ous. A bunch of rea­son­able peo­ple, led by wom­en, need­ed to shout out and re­as­sure each oth­er that they weren’t crazy be­cause they were hor­ri­fied at a nou­veau regime that’s crude, threat­en­ing, ig­no­ran­t, oli­garchic, re­ac­tionary, child­ish, cor­rup­t, big­ot­ed, thin-skinned, of­fen­sive, and oozes ap­palling­ly bad taste.

That’s about all the marchers had in com­mon; the hardass rhetoric com­ing off the main stage was in­ter­est­ing and had its mo­ments, but I bet very few of the marchers have even heard the word “intersectional”. Like­ly no­body will re­mem­ber the rhetoric, but ev­ery­one will re­mem­ber the clever sig­nage, massed pink, glow­ing faces, and as­ton­ish­ing ab­sence of vi­o­lence or van­dal­is­m.

Hall of shame ·

  • The new man­age­ment of the Ex­ec­u­tive Branch of the Unit­ed States Govern­men­t.

  • Twit­ter, for stud­ding the #Women­sMarch stream with de­plorable hate-spewing troll­s; they’re still there now. I mean, re­al­ly, Fuck Twit­ter.

  • Those troll­s. My quip: They were grumpy be­cause their Mom was off march­ing and couldn’t fix a sand­wich for them and bring it down to the base­men­t.

Thanks! · For that much-needed re­as­sur­ance that it’s per­fect­ly OK to have strong neg­a­tive feel­ings over be­hav­ior which is crude, threat­en­ing, ig­no­ran­t, oli­garchic, re­ac­tionary, child­ish, cor­rup­t, big­ot­ed, thin-skinned, of­fen­sive, and oozes ap­palling­ly bad taste.

What nex­t? · I dun­no. Nor does any­one else. In the Unit­ed States, the forces of de­cen­cy and san­i­ty suf­fer from a lead­er­ship vac­u­um. You can get along with­out a co­her­ent ide­ol­o­gy, but you need some­one to ral­ly around and vote for, and I don’t see who.

For the next few years, re­sist­ing the the ham­fist­ed gut­ter­snipes of the GOP will be use­ful and rea­son­ably re­ward­ing  —  the ev­i­dence sug­gests they lack the com­pe­tence to get much done. But Amer­i­ca needs an al­ter­na­tive.

Any­how, thank you to the Women’s Marcher­s; I know I need­ed the re­as­sur­ance. You’re not crazy. I’m not crazy.


Comment feed for ongoing:Comments feed

From: Peter Black (Jan 22 2017, at 22:56)

Sorry, it's a minor point given the importance of the topic, but did you mean venial or venal? Seems Important given the difference in meaning.


From: Willow Hovingh (Jan 23 2017, at 06:28)

Maybe, as you say, not many of the attendees had previously heard the word "intersectional," or thought about it.

But they've certainly heard it now. Maybe a few (or a more) will think about it and look up what it means. In any case, they've participated in an event that had intersectional feminism as an organizing principle. If some of them pick that up and run with it, that's a good thing.


From: John Cowan (Jan 23 2017, at 11:13)

"The best lack all conviction, while the worst / Are full of passionate intensity."

My grandson and I have a regular Saturday play-date, but the marchers were coming home around the same time as we were, so we went around to various sign-holders and Dorian asked them to show him their signs. Most of them were great — I remember particularly "A woman's place is in the revolution".

One woman, however, was holding her sign backwards. When Dorian asked her about it, she asked me, "How old is he?"


She turned it around: it read "C*** POWER", and she said "It's not really appropriate."

I replied, "He's too young to be offended, and I'm too old, but we support you anyway."


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