On Saturday January 21, 2017, the day after Donald Trump was sworn in as America’s 45th President, more than a million women took to the streets all over the world in protest as part of The Women’s March.
Here in New Orleans, the streets of the Crescent City were packed with upwards of 10,000 marchers, and I was one of them.
It was a protest march infused with New Orleans’ signature mix, when roused, of fabulous fun and banked fury. After meeting in Washington Park, thousands of marchers spilled out onto Esplanade Ave, turned on Decatur Street and then onwards into the heart of the French Quarter. The glitz and glitter were on display as protesters made their feelings about America’s latest president known in no uncertain terms.
As Trump settles in to squat in the Oval Office for as long as he can, his willing mouthpiece, Kellyanne Conway, told ABC News that she “didn’t see the point” to The Women’s March on Washington, possibly the only thing that I have heard Conway say that I actually believe.
The Women’s March may be the largest protest demonstration in US history, and she doesn’t see the point.
More than 1 million women marching in the US capital and other cities around the world against Trump, her client in the White House, and she doesn’t see the point. 500,000 people marching in Washington alone, and she doesn’t see the point.
However, she does see the point of what she has coined “Alt-facts.”
Alt-facts – a phrase that surely has Orwell spinning in his grave – is just the latest of a series of gambits by this gang of rapacious hucksters to see what they invent, what they can co-opt, and what they can get away with.
But here’s the thing, there are no “Alt-facts”, just like there is no “Alt-right.” An “Alt-fact” is a lie, the “Alt-right”are Nazis and White Supremacists. Climate change is real. Trump, at his inauguration, is the least popular president in history of the United States. Those crowds were small, and so, apparently, are his hands. These are the facts. Alt-facts are nothing. They don’t exist, except in the feverish minds of Trump and his detestable cabal.Conway also very much sees the point in trying, by all means possible, to get people to agree with her lies despite any and all evidence to the contrary, including the evidence of their own eyes. She definitely sees the point in demonizing the press as she deflects real questions while wittering on about whatever agenda she has been paid to push, beating about any and every bush instead of actually answering the question. Her tone drips with condescension as she regurgitates her stinking mishmash of bile and bullshit, catchphrases and untruths, on radio, on paper, and on TV.
“I want good relations with the press,” Conway said on air during an interview with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos. “But it has to be a two-way street. When I see twitter feeds, when I see words that people are using to describe this president, it is incredibly disrespectful to the office.”
The words used to describe Trump and his proposed swampish administration are not disrespectful to the office of President, but they are indicative of the respect that Trump has failed to earn during his acrimonious campaign and will no doubt continue to fail to earn in office as the 45th President.
Respecting the office of President does not mean that you have respect the man who currently holds that office. Trump, as a man, has earned the disrespect accorded to him over the course of his seven decades on this planet. I have no doubt that he will continue to earn that disrespect as president. I think he will earn it bigly. Wealth doesn’t equate with worth. While Trump is wealthy, he is in no way worthy of the office he currently occupies. And he never was. Ask the CIA. Once they get over his shambling speech to them in Virginia, that is. Former CIA Director John Brennan also had a few things to say about the Memorial Wall speech.
Why did Trump choose to come out in his first White House meeting and say things that are not true? It is because Trump is a liar, it is because Sean Spicer is a liar, and it is because Conway is a liar. Why call them liars? They are liars because they lie. And they have kept lying. And no amount of spouting “Alt-facts” alters that, much as liars would like it to.
“We are going to watch the President does, we are going to watch what the President says,” said George Stephanopoulos. “When the President speaks to the CIA and says things that aren’t true. When his press secretary goes to the podium and repeats things that are not true, is that okay? Isn’t it our responsibility in the press to call them on that? To hold them to account?”
Yes, it is.
Later in the interview with Stephanopoulos, Conway demanded that the press “respect the office and its current occupant.”
The brass neck of this woman is breathtaking, but her idea of a “two-way street”, not just in regards to the press but in regards to anyone who questions her narrative, can be summed up as “ignore reality and repeat after me.”
Just days after Trump’s shoddy ill-attended inauguration, she and Spicer attempted to ram “Alt-facts” down the throat of the press and populous, and failed. And even if Trump, with a spectacular lack of humility, does officially, via executive order, declare the day of his inauguration a National Day of Patriotism, that doesn’t change. They failed.
As Trump’s version of 2017 gets its jackboots and starts its march into his self-described apocalyptic future, I, and millions of other men and women marched into ours. One in which the line drawn in the shifting sands of Trump’s post-factual world is our vigilance. our willingness to fight back, and our refusal to be silenced.
What the future holds is anyone’s guess, but the Women’s March happened, millions of people said NO to Trump and his self-serving vision of America in a way that dwarfed Conway’s lies. It happened. It was real. And it is not going away.
Sorry, Kellyanne. Reality is a bitch that way.
For more of my photos taken at The Women’s March: New Orleans click here