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Tag: Katie Britt

MAGA is Coming For Our Books, Kitchens, and Children, Especially the Ones Not Wearing Pants

katie britt

By Abby Zimet, Common Dreams, Used by Permission

Talk about a tale of two countries: This election year, with only fervid culture wars to offer, a fear-mongering GOP is hating on books, flags, migrants, rainbows, birth control, scary clown drag queens; electing zealots and bigots; drawing pants on goblins’ butts and turning teachers who support trans kids into sex offenders. And this week, they definitively rejected Biden’s nation of hope and decency with a lying, sociopathic White Mom On the Brink – “There’s bodegas on the corner!” – in “some deeply weird shit.”

With a shambolic GOP House flopping at everything – no evidence of a “Biden crime family,” Hunter’s laptop info came from a Russian spy, they can barely manage to fund the government – zealous patriots and lawmakers in multiple states have eagerly taken up the ugly task of stripping someone’s rights somewhere in the name of “freedom.” In don’t-say-woke Florida, a handful of enthused cranks, bigots and “Moms For Liberty” have challenged hundreds of books – including almost anything with an LGBTQ character and dictionaries, though DeSantis denies it. A recent, witless target was Maurice Sendak’s classic In The Night Kitchen, which they dubbed “pornographic” because little Mickey is naked as he bakes a cake. The solution: draw shorts on him. Ditto the bare backside of the disgruntled goblin in Unicorns Are The Worst – he got pants – and the grandfather in Sofia Valdez, Future Prez, who’s wearing a pin for LGBTQ rights, or was. This, despite lawsuits and enough bad press on threatening librarians with felony charges that even DeSantis has backed off, suggesting “random people” are objecting “to every single book under the sun,” which, yes, they are.

In Georgia, GOP lawmakers would also jail librarians who let kids check out LGBTQ books. In Missouri, which supports child marriage and school spankings, they’ve passed 43 anti-trans bills; a new proposed bill criminalizes teachers who call students by their preferred pronouns or otherwise “contribute to social transition,” if they do, they’d face four years in prison and have to register as sex offenders banned from schools or parks. Having outlawed abortion with no rape or incest exceptions – pregnancy “by God’s grace may (be) the greatest healing agent” – the A.G sued Planned Parenthood for “trafficking” minors out of state for abortions. In Tennessee, the GOP opposes rainbows but is all in on slaves: They banned Pride flags but in seconds declined to ban Confederate flags as proposed by Rep. Justin Pearson, who they also made it easier to expel next time. In North Carolina Holocaust-denying, anti-women’s suffrage, sort of black Mark Robinson, who calls LGBTQ and trans people “sick, deranged, sexual degenerates” and school shooting survivors who want gun control “media prosti-tots,” just got the GOP’s well-funded nod to run for governor.

In honor of and reflecting this worldview, in which the way to achieve greatness is to demean, marginalize and deprive of their rights anyone who looks/thinks differently from you comes dystopian masterpiece of “Patriotic AI Art” America Lives.The creation of “Veteran, Father, Patriot” Joseph Youngbluth and one Jason Coursey – “USA’s pronouns are USA” – they made their lunatic, histrionic video “to support the greatest president of our lifetime (yeah him) and “capture “the essence of (his) vision.” And wow, does it. “The idea of America lives in every one of us,” thunders the narrator. “But a storm has gathered at our shores, a tempest that seeks to tear apart the fabric of our nation.” Cue clouds, mobs, lightning, hobos, looming flames, shrieky music, jackboots, rubble, sandbags, wheat fields, blue-haired Antifa stalking through ruined cities, mohawked drag queens reading to kids (probably In the Night Kitchen) and a “hurricane of deceit and moral decay (that) Has Come for our Children.” Fortuitously, in this “true battle of good vs. evil,” “We are great men with a great leader (who) seeks the same ideals as we do, and sees the greatness in us.” Whew.

Many Americans, we are told, are going wild over this dumbfounding paean. “This literally moved me to tears,” wrote one. “Not just from what we have endured, but because there is still hope to Save America!” Strangely, though, their America was nowhere in sight last week at Biden’s “scrappy,” hopeful, much-praised State of the Union speech, wherein he summoned “the gravest threat to our democracy since the Civil War” and urged insurrectionist Republicans to “speak the truth and bury the lies.” Repeatedly critiquing “my predecessor,” He Who Shall Not Be Named, Biden touted his economic successes, insisted “political violence has absolutely no place in America,” celebrated the “core values” of “Honesty. Decency. Dignity. Equality” to “give everyone a fair shot” and “give hate no safe harbor” – what one optimist called “saving democracy so we can do cool shit” – and, refreshingly, delineated the Dems’ desire to offer “freedom for,” in contrast to paranoid right-wingers’ “freedom from” (voting rights, drag queens etc). Citing the GOP talk of a national ban on reproductive choice, Biden retorted, “My God, what freedoms will you take away next?”

Most shockingly to the right, Biden didn’t dribble, stagger, babble or die in accordance with their narrative he’s so old and dementia-ridden – irony alert – he’s almost comatose. Faced with the need to pivot, and reminding us how execrable they are, they quickly came up with a new, evidence-free, doused-in-irony-if they-knew-what-it-was narrative: Biden was “pumped full of god-knows-what drugs!” “Plot twist: It was Joe Biden’s cocaine in the White House!” one screeched, and, “What drugs have they shot him up with? This is not how normal people talk.” Hannity got into the act by conjuring up a new tagline, “Jacked-Up Joe.” Even friggin’ Dr. Ronny ‘Feel Good’ Jackson did – “Whatever they gave to Biden is wearing off! He is struggling big time!” – fresh off a Pentagon report that confirmed allegations he handed out drugs like Skittles at the White House, and his subsequent demotion from admiral to captain. Still Joe charged on, dismissing their “American story of resentment, revenge and retribution.” “That’s not me,” he said, rejecting “the oldest of ideas…You can’t lead (with) ideas that only take us back.” (Later, he did take back his “illegal,” so thanks for that.)

His predecessor, meanwhile, took himself back to a bored 14-year-old bully throwing a hissy fit in detention who nattered through four dozen rants online, sank to re-posting some MAGA moron’s spliced Snapchat filters turning Biden into a goofy cartoon, a girl with pigtails, a slobbery dog etc before finally, laughably declaring Biden “an Embarrassment to our Country!” R-i-g-h-t. There were many others, of course: MTG Three-Toes turned up in full, red, gaudy NASCAR/MAGA regalia, looking like “something pumped out of a trailer park septic tank. Pure trash.” But in the oh-lord-how-long-will-it-go-on GOP Ignominy Sweepstakes, nobody can compete with deeply weird, kitchen-bound, fundie-baby-voiced Worst Lifetime Movie Actress Ever Sen. Katie Britt, who in her SOTU “rebuttal” tearfully swept together Twilight Zone, Birth of a Nation, SNL and a KKK revival meeting to paint a florid MAGA portrait of Trump’s American Carnage, a hellscape of rampaging migrants, struggling families and terrified communities in what was savaged as “the worst acting, ever.” One plaintive query: “Can these people not even pretend to be normal for a few minutes on television?” Not.

The junior senator from Alabama, abortion opponent, Christian nationalist – “We need to get God back in our classrooms” – and former corporate lobbyist spoke from the evidently not real “kitchen” – women love kitchen – of the 6,300-square-foot home she shares with her former NFL player/now lobbyist husband Wesley, daughter Bennett and son Ridgeway – “My daughter Chippendale and my son Marblehead” – “living their American dream, but right now the American dream has turned into (yes!) a nightmare.” In the hushed, breathless whisper fundamentalist women use to convey their requisite, childlike submissiveness – but veering wildly to tearfulness and a creepy fake smile – she declared Biden “out of touch” with “what real families are facing around the kitchen table like this one, where we laugh together and hold each other’s hands and pray for guidance” as they see “the nation slipping away,” because brown people. Also, “We are steeped in the blood of patriots, we walk in the footsteps of pioneers who tamed the wild (and) got knocked down and Stood Back Up,” “Destiny’s Hand,” “moms and dads Just Like You”, “INNOCENT AMERICANS ARE DYING STOP THE SUFFERING.”

Her “handlers,” it was widely noted, “tried to give us ‘America’s mom,”‘ but got the crazy aunt at Thanksgiving who only wants to talk about sex dungeons under pizza parlors. The weirdness and fakery was too much. The response was withering, the parodies flew. She was giving Lifetime TV serial killer mom vibes. This lady is GOP AI. Holy cringe. Is this an infomercial? Is she crying Demonic drama. The kitchen whisperer. State of the carmelized onion. She nuts. She big mad. Is she still crying? Where are the normal people? Evil June Cleaver. Make actors great again. Fellow white moms, are you feeling me? That is the kitchen of a psychopath. Boiling rabbit is next. Stepford Wives. Handmaid’s Tale. Gilead. My Name Is Katie Britt and I Am SingingTomorrow From Annie. Goodness, y’all, bless her heart. Are we watching a hostage video? I wanna fight for you, and by you I mean people who look like me. The Young and the Congressional. Wesley come get your wife, my guy, she’s embarrassing you and your kids. Am I crying? If I am, it’s because of brown people at the border. Empty chairs tonight at kitchen tables Just…Like…This…One. Big finish, fadeout.

Most unforgivably, as uncovered by freelance journalist Jonathan M. Katz, her salacious story about Mexican cartels repeatedly raping a sex-trafficked 12-year-old girl was a cynical, exploitative, “beyond misleading” ploy to turn someone’s real-life pain and horror into a GOP talking point to convince other racists that every dark-skinned person who turns up at the border fleeing violence in their own country is a sex-trafficking cartel rapist and/or a fentanyl salesman. Britt charged Biden’s border policy had “invited” such atrocities; in fact, the story belonged to a Mexican woman who was trafficked and raped in Mexico during George Bush’s tenure, escaped, became an anti-trafficking activist, bravely testified to Congress in 2015 about her harrowing experiences, and today insists what she does should not be political: “The work I do is not a game.” Not only did Britt co-opt the story into “an out and out lie” to serve her own sordid political purposes; she did so on behalf of a sexually assaulting candidate whose policies, when in power, made it harder to curb trafficking and protect victims, pushing traumatized survivors “further into the shadows.”

Some good, however, did come of Britt’s grotesque duplicity: In divided and rancorous times, she brought both sides together in agreement that “her performance was the stuff of nightmares.” “Everyone’s fucking losing it,” said a GOP operative. “It’s one of our biggest disasters ever,” from a kitchen yet. Other reviews: “She was clearly over-coached,” “her delivery was parody-level terrible,” “the experience (of watching) was… experiential,” and from legal analyst Andrew Weissmann, “I don’t think Katie Britt is going to get the lead in the school play this year.” Since then, she got spoofed on SNL and asked to apologize for her lies: “God calls on us to do hard things.” But her spokesman defended the trafficking story as “100% correct,” she got fawning, surreal support from Fox and Friends – “Great job – it all seemed so natural” – and Hannity even as she smilingly doubled down on Biden’s “rage-filled, incoherent” speech, prattled, “We care about faith, family, freedom,” and blamed “liberal media” for…something: “It is disgusting of trying to silence the voice of telling the story of what is like to be sex-trafficked.” Behold, and beware: Alternative facts, worlds, universes are alive and well amongst a despicable people.

Bruce Gerencser, 66, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 45 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.

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Bruce Gerencser