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Please, Don’t Feed the Bully

Please, Don’t Feed the Bully

Bullies are insecure jerks. You know this if you managed to survive your junior high and high school years. Bullies attack because they fear being attacked. Bullies point out perceived flaws in others to deflect examination of their own shortcomings. The best way to deal with a bully is usually to ignore him. It’s easier said than done. Take the bully-in-chief, who delights in slinging adolescent insults. Horse face, dog, fat pig, slob—and these are just a few of the…

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Frat Boy Justice, the Musical

Frat Boy Justice, the Musical

Kavanaugh’s damage was wholly self-inflicted. As I watched him weep and pound his fists and flip binder pages with the petulance of a grade schooler, I wondered how he’d ever landed a job of any kind. He seems temperamentally unfit to work retail.

Virginity Is Not Morality

Virginity Is Not Morality

I don’t know what will happen to Brett Kavanaugh over the next few days. The Supreme Court nominee continues to vigorously deny accusations that he sexually assaulted one woman and exposed himself to another while he was in high school and college. It’s possible that he could be confirmed to the court as early as the end of this week. The senators in charge of his confirmation do not seem inclined to investigate the allegations with any vigor and I…

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We Can All Do Better

We Can All Do Better

I believe Christine Blasey Ford I was a teenager in the 1980s. Back then, girls were taught to fight off the advances of boys. Boys were taught to advance. Boys seemed to believe that it was their right to try and have sex with girls. They didn’t pursue this by having conversations or by building intimacy; they pursued sex by wearing you down, by pressing against you, by grabbing and groping, by begging and even crying. No one talked about…

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The Joy of Happy Valley

The Joy of Happy Valley

When my husband travels, I often dive into a new series to pass the time in the evenings. He’s taken two extended trips this year, which was just enough for me to get through both seasons of Happy Valley on Netflix. If you haven’t seen Happy Valley, you should watch it. In Happy Valley, middle-aged women are portrayed by actual middle-aged women. This should not be remarkable, but it is. Of course, it’s British; American television would never stand for so…

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Notes From a Dumb Southerner

Notes From a Dumb Southerner

Apparently the current president called his attorney general a “dumb southerner” and made fun of his accent. This is one of many ugly incidents reported in Bob Woodward’s forthcoming book Fear. Look, I don’t like Jeff Sessions. He is a racist, sexist, homophobic, and self-righteous little man. But “dumb southerner” is an insult too far. One of Trump’s most annoying verbal habits is that he slings broad insults rather than specific ones. Calling Sessions a “dumb southerner” implies that all (or most)…

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That’s a Deal Breaker

That’s a Deal Breaker

When my husband does something for which he feels he must apologize, I often reassure him by saying, “Don’t worry, that’s not a deal breaker.” My husband, being a good and considerate person, often apologizes for things I wouldn’t even notice. Because of this, I sometimes shout “NOT A DEAL BREAKER!” before he has a chance to apologize. I’m charming like that. This week I read the news about Rep. Duncan Hunter’s indictment for misusing campaign finance funds. I have…

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This is Not a Good Guy

This is Not a Good Guy

Paul Manafort is not the best people. Yesterday, as news came down about Manafort’s eight felony convictions, the president kept insisting that Manafort is really “a good guy.” He isn’t. Good guys don’t hide their money in overseas bank accounts in an effort to defraud the federal government. Good guys don’t lie about their assets to get bank loans. Good guys don’t drape themselves in python and ostrich. Truly they do not. Manafort was convicted primarily of fraud. He lied…

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