This morning I woke up thinking about the Rebecca Traister’s book “Good & Mad: The Revolutionary Power of Women’s Anger,” which I read about a year after 45’s Inauguration. I’m thinking specifically about the part where Traister writes about suburban white women typically voting along with their husbands; feeling secure in their patriarchy adjacent privilege and the cover they receive from that umbrella (until of course it’s yanked back and white women realize they’ve never actually held the umbrella nor the power).
It’s not a new concept, but I’m thinking about 2018 and 2020 and how that might have changed. I wonder how many white women, woken from hibernation by a predator like Donald Trump in 2016, realized they were actually governed by monsters, Trump just happened to roar the loudest. I wonder how many women went into fight or flight mode and chose to fight. I wonder how many women said “enough.” I wonder how many women, who previously never thought about politics or thought they needed to think or discuss it became vocal as hell at the dinner table. Started demanding their voices be heard by their bewildered husbands. Donned campaign shirts and knocked doors, made calls, proudly displayed yard signs, bumper stickers, hit the pavement and protested, ran for office themselves. I wonder how many women started grabbing for the umbrella so they could protect not just themselves but marginalized groups as well.
I wonder in 2018 & 2020 how many suburban white men have voted with their suburban white wives instead. I have no illusions that it’s a majority, protecting the white patriarchy is powerful. But I do wonder about the revolutions happening in suburban households all across America. How many couples talked politics – really spoke politics – for the first time ever. How many women found voices that they could no longer suppress, rage that they could channel into change. Power.
No matter what happens on Nov 3rd – white women – may we continue to grow our power. May we never allow ourselves the privilege – or delusion – of complacency again. May we work just as hard in 2022 as we did in 2018. May we never let that burner run out of gas.
May we never again trust others to protect our best interests. They will only serve their own and as we’ve seen that is about consolidating power among minority rule and fatten the bank accounts of corporations, lobbyists, etc.
Let’s keep this revolution going. Stay angry.
(Note: when I say women I am referring to the group I am a part of, white women. Black women in particular have always been doing the damn work so the prior complacency and voting patterns are not a reflection of BIPOC women)