Two Women Kicked Conservatives' Ass This Weekend and It Was Glorious

1. Emma Gonzalez has a superhero origin story that is up there with Batman's. After her friends were gunned down at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, Gonzalez transformed from a smart, active, politically-aware teen looking forward to graduation into a goddamn warrior queen, a powerful avenger against the forces of evil that have dominated our politics for too long. Call her "the Skinhead Lesbian" and put a motherfuckin' cape on her.

Gonzalez had already given one of the most potent and angry speeches about the failure of adults, especially the adults supposedly serving the nation (but are really just serving the National Rifle Association), to do anything to address gun violence other than call for more violence. And on Saturday, at the March For Our Lives in Washington, DC., Gonzalez spoke for a couple of minutes and then stood there in silence, staring out at the sea of hundreds of thousands of people, stone cold except for the tears streaming down her face, for the remainder of the 6 minutes and 20 seconds, the same time it took for Nikolas Cruz to kill 17 and wound 17 others back in Parkland, Florida, a month and a half ago. What Gonzalez did emphasized both how short a time it was for so many to die and how long a time it was to wait in darkened classrooms, in closets, in bathrooms, behind locked doors, wondering if you are going to be murdered at your school.

Crazed Trump supporters and gun-humping conservatives are scared shitless by Gonzalez. They have attacked her looks and sexuality (the aforementioned "skinhead lesbian" remark that led to its speaker, a Republican - duh - to drop out of his race for the Maine legislature), photoshopped her tearing a copy of the Constitution (which was really a shooting range target), and criticized her for wearing a Cuban flag on her jacket (her father is from Cuba). Hell, craven scum fuck Rep. Steve King got in on the act, saying that Gonzalez was "ignor[ing] the fact that your ancestors fled the island when the dictatorship turned Cuba into a prison camp." To which one can only say, "Asshole, that flag has been flying in Cuba since 1902. Should German-Americans never hang up a flag from their ancestors' country?"

This is the point where a rational pro-gun group would stand down, where rational pro-gun members of Congress would say, "Okay, let's negotiate," but these are not rational people. They are hideous money-engorging monsters who thrive on irrational fear and fake machismo. You can stand with them or you can stand with the vast majority of Americans who want gun control. You can stand with the desiccated, weary visage of the NRA's Wayne LaPierre or you can stand strong with Gonzalez.

Gonzalez didn't ask to become a superhero any more than Peter Parker asked to be bitten by a spider. She chose to take her pain and, along with her fellow students, turn it into courage and righteous anger. May we be a better nation because of it.

(Note: Amazing speeches were made all around the nation from students, from David Hogg to 11 year-old Naomi Wadler. Gonzalez's stood out because it used the incredible power of silence, something our noisy, word-filled, notification-dinging age has forgotten can convey more than a million memes.)

2. Man, Donald Trump must have been laying sullenly in bed after returning to DC last night, having spent the weekend avoiding protesters at Mar-a-Lago, which is less than an hour from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. (Seriously, it's right down the fucking road.) Trump must have been getting bits of Big Macs stuck in his fat folds as he watched the 60 Minutes interview with Stormy Daniels, the porn actress, director, and writer. How deranged he must have felt when Daniels said, plainly, she wasn't attracted to Trump, that she didn't want to fuck him after the first time because he lied about getting her on The Celebrity Apprentice, that she turned him into her bitch by spanking him with a magazine.

And, especially, that she came across as more honest, intelligent, and trustworthy than the goddamn President of the United States ever had been in his entire life. Yeah, that's right. The woman whose film roles include her taking copious amounts of jizz on her breasts is a way more respectable person than Donald Trump. Although, to be fair, there are moldy rocks that are more honorable than Trump.

Daniels, or, you know, Stephanie Clifford, was every bit as convincing as her lawyer said she would be. She confidently related how Trump got her to go back to his room, how he dangled the prize of the TV appearance over her, how he skeevily compared her to his daughter (presumable Ivanka, since Tiffany was 13 at the time of the affair, but, with Trump, you never know), how he told her to ignore the fact that Melania had just recently given birth. Trump comes across like every horndog old man creeping on a younger, seemingly sexually open woman. It's somewhere between pathetic and rapey, even as Daniels insisted that she was not a victim. But Trump's lawyer worked hard to intimidate her and someone sent a goon to intimidate her, threatening her in front of her infant daughter. Gee, who could have sent the goon? Who is a wannabe gangster? Who is a fake-ass tough guy?

What Daniels did to kick Trump's ass was to stand up to him and his thugs. She showed that you can tell Trump to shut the fuck up, and, if you've got the right magazine to spank him with, he might just do that.

Still, one thing she said has stuck with me. Daniels talked about coming out of the bathroom that first evening in 2006 in Trump's hotel suite and seeing him perched on the bed. She told Anderson Cooper, "I realized exactly what I'd gotten myself into. And I was like, 'Ugh, here we go.' (LAUGH) And I just felt like maybe-- (LAUGH) it was sort of-- I had it coming for making a bad decision for going to someone's room alone and I just heard the voice in my head, 'Well, you put yourself in a bad situation and bad things happen, so you deserve this.'" So she had sex with him. In its way, that statement is a distillation of the treatment of women in our culture, conditioned to think that they "deserve" what they get. Daniels insisted that she consented, but she's admitting that that consent was a kind of self-punishment.

And while we can laugh and say that, of course, sex with Trump is punishment, it's sad that however much power Daniels had taken in the situation, she still didn't think she was powerful enough to tell him she wasn't into it. Maybe the interview was a long-delayed "No" that Trump rarely hears.