• Stephanie Vigil

This One is a Rant

I decided to make two posts this week: one about the attempted coup, which is mostly angry but hopefully offers some perspective, and one with some constructive tasks that I'm taking on and might be interesting to some of you.

Anyone else just seething with more and more anger as the days go by?

For decades the right has been building up to this, and now they want us to act like it's a fluke, didn't really have anything to do with them, or isn't half as bad as, say, Black people protesting non-stop extrajudicial killings by police.

Every time I’ve seen a public statement or a Tweet with some well-meaning nonsense like, “Yes yes, we all want healing and unity, but first we need accountability,” I just want to pull my hair out. The demand for "healing" & "unity" while the abuse continues is not to be taken at face value. It’s a scam. They don't want unity with the rest of us, they want submission.

Please resist the urge to give them the benefit of the doubt like they might mean what they say this time and we can have a little chat about whose argument is better. That ship has sailed. These are terrorists. You do not need to feel conflicted about whether you’re being the bigger person. If you’ve never taken part in an attempted coup of a lawfully elected government, you are already the bigger person and they need to come up to our level.

I just want to say a word about how predictable and inexcusable this is, because I know I’m not the only one who feels like we can’t possibly over-react to this, and anyone who says that a second impeachment, or expulsion of Congressional members who enabled it, is too far or somehow "divisive"’s almost like they’re trying to make you feel stupid or crazy.

They are.

I was raised by abusers. This is a thing that they do. In their minds, their violent behavior was your fault in the first place, for your failure to obey them, so they will never think it’s on them to restore the relationship after what they've done. That's something a healthy person does after a mistake, and that’s not the situation we’re dealing with. In their sense of things, part of your punishment is being reduced to apologizing to them (for what you forced them to do), and to take on the full emotional labor of repair afterward. They need that instant reunification and "healing," to maintain the sense that they've done nothing wrong.

You will always have to be the bigger person with abusers because they lack the capacity. They aren't in their full adult self. And in numbers this large, all we can do for now is restraint and prosecute, and contain the danger.

You also have to expect the worst from them at any and every moment, because abusive behavior is capricious. You can't afford to give unreformed abusers the benefit of the doubt. It's too dangerous.

If you didn't learn this in your formative years, and were never in the double bind of having your only caregivers also be the single greatest threat to your safety, I am so grateful for you that you had a real childhood. But some of us know abusers, and I hope everyone else can hear this: None of these Trump supporters and enablers have turned over a new leaf. None of them want healing or unity. They want the rest of us to submit to their will and absorb the full burden of living with their toxicity.

But we don't actually have to do that. You know why? Because we won. The American majority doesn't want what this bunch wants. Democrats have a true popular mandate from the American people to stop right wing terrorism here in our homeland. Let's act like it.

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