Twitter Rundown: Nice to tweet you.

I’ve been spending far too much time tweeting and not nearly enough time focused on long-form writing. Or perhaps I should say I’ve been cutting up said writing into 140 characters. I use Twitter in two ways—to hold conversations and to dispense essays. Really, Twitter should be used for self-promotion, but I started off using Twitter as a glorified chat room and old habits die hard. My account is private—and while the digital padlock blissfully cuts interactions with strangers to almost nil it makes it difficult to share one’s work.

My tweets have increased as Trump has usurped the presidency and fascism has taken root in the mainstream. My social circle is comprised largely of folks from marginalized groups (or those who love them) and we are all concerned to say the least. To tweet is to stay in touch, to make sure we are all getting up every morning, and that we know that our getting up is helping someone else get through.

What follows are my tweets regarding the events of the last few days—Trump’s inauguration, the Women’s March on Washington, and how Nazi leader Richard Spencer became an international joke in the span of a few seconds with a mere punch from an Antifa rebel.

On Nazis and not-so-Nazis:

“I know calling regular ol’ American racists Nazis makes white people feel better but if y’all refuse to acknowledge this ish is homegrown and was around long before Nazis ever existed you aren’t going to be able to properly combat it. Right now there’s some dude who voted for Trump and doesn’t think he’s a problem. I mean he’s not a Nazi. He just doesn’t want black people living in his neighborhood. He just doesn’t want a mosque in town. He buys comics at your local shop. He dated your oldest cousin. No Nazis here. He just goes to his job at the school, or the bank, or the plant and pours his poison out unawares while deciding folks’ futures. ‘Russia’ couldn’t have gotten in, ‘Nazis’ couldn’t have gotten in if American bigots (majority of racists here) hadn’t left the door open. And you guys still refuse to shut and lock it. Or even admit there is an opening. Y’all are screwed, because this is a huge weakness—one you broadcast internationally to the world on the regular. And this obsession with Nazis and Russia is like hunting down a fly that got into a house infested with roaches. I don’t like flies either, but at least spray some Raid with the hand that’s not holding the flyswatter.”

Regarding Donald Trump’s comment on “peaceful” protests and the Women’s March:

“Please note the ‘peaceful.’ He is trying to bring as many white women back over to his side as he can with that. ‘Peaceful’ will be used as a wedge to separate the issues that affect white women from those which specifically affect women of color. The former will be addressed—after all the white women were ‘peaceful’ and asked so nicely—the latter will not. He is hoping you will turn your backs on us. That when you see black and brown women being brutalized for pleading for their children’s lives you will smugly assume that we did something to deserve it. That we weren’t ‘peaceful.’ Please don’t fall for this. Don’t gather up the birth control and equal pay he might give you and step over our broken bodies to leave.”

On the presence of young anarchists at political protests:

“You want to fight fascism? Whoo, man! That’s great. I’m excited with how down you are. But I just want to make something clear to you before you run out in the street to bash Nazis. This is not Nazi Fucking Germany. This is America—land of Klansmen and black scapegoats. Every brick, every punch, every fire? You own that shit with your skin. Don’t you dare hide behind peaceful black people. Don’t you come to our well-organized protests and throw wrenches into our shit. Nobody sent for you. It’s hard—especially when you are young and especially when you have privilege—to see this as a game or a saga. To put yourself in the role of savior or freedom fighter. Marginalized people aren’t your sidekicks though. Not your princesses. Your passion is appreciated. But these are folks who have been putting in work in arenas you know little about. Let them lead. And speak. And, of course, speak for yourself (no need for translators) in the places those groups can’t access. And that is the work that is hardest to convince the privileged to do. To speak at the dinner table instead of the street. Nobody hands out awards for that. No retweets or photos. Just the quiet work of making your circle better. It’s worth it though.”

On Trump versus the American news media:

“Trump’s whole appeal is making white people feel like winners through his successes. Can’t do that without the platform they are huddled around. And without actual success. Right now the people who wanted confirmation via Trump that whiteness made them inherently good see Trump being humiliated. Trump is a loser and if cable news starts being honest about that those folks will pick a new white person to live vicariously through. Dear God, hopefully Evan McMullin or someone similar. The ‘alt-right’ media (and Trump) pushed a lie to white people that they were inherently better but also unwanted, unappreciated, and enlisted in a culture war. One they could win by voting for Trump. And cable news refused to push back on those lies. The truth is there’s no war and they have a seat at the table. We’d just prefer they’d stop breaking glasses and stabbing folks with shards. We just spent two days marching and laughing about punching Nazis together. If the news media keeps stressing that? The empire falters.”

On the recent debate about engaging Nazi leader Richard Spencer—physically or verbally:

“We should also stress that it is okay and morally right to shun a Nazi. Nazis do not get a spot on the debate team. You do not have to hear them out. Groups who in between murdering print up little garbage booklets advocating genocide do not get airtime. This man was being interviewed by ABC. That is shameful. How many marginalized groups will never have the privilege of that platform? America was about to give a Klansman a reality show. When is the last time you saw a Native American dude on one? Not everybody is built for punching and I’d like all y’all not to go to jail over these losers, but the next time some message board schmuck is like ‘Even Nazis should be heard’ and that ish is not immediately shut down that is a moral failure that needs addressing. There is a thin line between fedoras and swastikas and the right thing to do is build a giant wall there. Shun early. Block often.”

And again as writer Nick Spencer entered the debate:

“The thing about Nick Spencer is while everyone is all ‘Dude, how can you write Cap?’—they don’t understand it’s Falcon that’s the issue. Comics is literally chock full of these white moderates speaking for and over black people through black characters to the point where I feel like I can’t breathe. And every week a new lead is announced with some white person grinning ear-to-ear about it like it helps. This is ruining black characters for me because white moderates are the ones allowed to bring you a simulation of African American culture. It’s not black people. It’s never black people. We get the pretend African country as if it’s not safe for one of us to show you black American thought, love, families, culture. As if these things have to be filtered through white hands like guards handle convict mail. And it makes for terrible books. It makes for a terrible universe the way you silence us—but softly through a lack of opportunity and a refusal to network with us instead of a punch or a law. No wonder you get so bent out of shape with people actually calling out violence with violence. If we go ‘eye for an eye’ we might turn our backs on your work as you’ve turned your backs on us.”


Donald Trump’s escape hatch.

Donald Trump does not want to be president, for Donald Trump does not want a job that is difficult and extraordinarily tedious. What Donald Trump wants is to humble Barack Obama, the Bush family, the Clintons, and every individual he believes has wronged him. Donald Trump also wants money, attention, and respect—as do many people, to be fair.

He can get all of those things by relinquishing the presidency—and would not have to work for any of it. He can only get money by being president. And he will have to toil and suffer for every penny of it. His life would become a nightmare of protests, public humiliations, heckling, and constant media scrutiny. No more extramarital affairs, no more extended vacations and complete freedom of movement. For once in his life, Donald Trump would have to answer to someone—the American people. And for all the galas and television cameras, for all the pomp and circumstance, the truth is that being president is an excruciating job physically, mentally, and emotionally—much of it done quietly, sans fanfare, while sitting in an office. The greatest presidents have been those with a drive to serve and make America better. The worst have done it for prestige, money, or the obligation of nepotism. And America has suffered greatly for the latter.

A petition has been created begging the assigned Electors of the Electoral College to buck the trends of their particular states and vote for the candidate who won the popular vote. A lovely idea, but it is one that will never come to fruition because rich white men would never place the health of the country over the continued strength of white supremacy and racism.

And the truth is that America overall is in danger. For Trump is considering a collection of the most corrupt and incompetent people to ever venture into politics to serve in his cabinet. A man who cared about America would assemble a team of capable conservatives with a host of successes found within their resumes. Christie, Jindal, Carson, Palin and others are colossal political failures held in disdain. They are unfit to serve and would cause untold damage.

Unless Donald Trump does not become president. And should he have the presidency stolen from him by rogue Electors, his life would improve considerably–all while maintaining his status as a “winner.” The focused disgust that over half of the country has expressed towards him would vanish in relief the moment Clinton became president. Clinton would likely be so grateful that Trump would be able to operate for the next four to eight years with a blanket pardon in his back pocket. He would attend any Clinton event he wished as an honored guest. Some would be held at his hotels. Not only would he be amongst respected celebrities and the political élite, but for once they would legitimately be delighted to see him. Because he was willing to play nice when it counted the most. I’d rather be seen as an incorrigible but talented entrepreneur seated next to Beyoncé than be a harried and despised president of a faltering country who could only get Scott Baio and Rudy Giuliani to come to my events. I suspect Trump would rather have fame and mainstream adoration instead of the hate and fear of a majority of the populace too. His entire career has been the selling of his name. His presidency would ensure a four-year boycott of Trump products by more than half of the populace—more importantly, by the élite.

A Clinton presidency would be the magic wand that erased Trump’s misdeeds, but what of the overwhelming number of racists—some of them violent—who voted for him? Well, they would be an absolute treasure trove for Trump and others to exploit. Trump TV would decimate FOX News. Clinton would grimace as Trump used his preferential treatment to savage her in the press, but she’d bear it. For she knows how to play the game too. Trump would make untold sums from his media investments. Cable news is far more lucrative when conservatives are the underdog. And he would barely have to lift a finger. Money without having to work for it? That’s of more interest to Trump than slogging through a president’s daily itinerary.

Clinton winning by an Electoral College upset would benefit Trump and Clinton (and benefit America overall), but it would be a bittersweet victory even though I want desperately for it to happen. For I know that as a black woman my safety would be in danger. Gun sales would skyrocket. And though there are a plethora of assaults occurring now, I am certain that Trump’s white supremacist supporters would resort to murder during a Clinton presidency. I could be murdered.

I could be murdered, but I would take that risk to salvage our educational system. I could be murdered, but I would take that risk to keep Muslims and Latinos from being deported. I could be murdered, but I would take that risk were Native sovereignty validated and the health of our environment preserved. I could be murdered, but I would take that risk to keep LGBT marriages and adoptions intact. I could be murdered, but I would take that risk so that young women could maintain reproductive freedom. I could be murdered, but I would take that risk so the lower and middle classes had safe working conditions and health insurance. I could be murdered, but I would risk it all again and again and again, first and foremost, to stop black disenfranchisement and death.

Yet we will have a Trump presidency on December 18, and the demise of American excellence soon after, because white Americans want to once again feel as though they are inherently better than people of color and be able to point to a racist white president to validate it. They have proven it with their votes and the Electors will prove it with theirs. For through all of the country’s economic ups and downs that is what made America great to them. They will give up their money. They will give up their health. They will give up their safety. They will give up their privacy. They will give up the lives of the marginalized. All so that they can sit smugly no matter their poverty, addictions, battered and broken bodies, stunted children, scarred uteri, ghost towns, poisoned water or crumbling roads, and delight in the fact that they are not a nigger.


Tips for Donald Trump’s new America.

You should probably learn the following during Donald Trump’s stint as president: a second language, home repair, car repair, and how to grow food. Things are going to get very expensive and the more you can do it yourself and barter the better. I’m expecting things to get 1970s New York City bad. And that was pretty damn bad. But our families survived it, so prepare. And if you’re thinking 1970s New York City doesn’t sound that bad—congratulations on being white and straight, I guess. Also, a friggin’ lot of us are going to have zero health insurance soon. Do maintenance care—zero slacking on that. Whatever procedure you’ve been putting off? Book it. Minor surgery? Get it done while you can afford it.

Now would be a good time to get adoption papers in order. Every T crossed and I dotted. Double check it. And get a passport.

Swing by to see your union representative if your job has a union. See what you can and can’t be fired for and what protections you have from harassment.

And it is perfectly okay to quietly jettison any bigots or their enablers out of your social circle for your own safety.