The deranged distillation of the angry white male id

Michelle Goldberg considers the role of misogyny in the recent disaster.

Forty-six years ago, Germaine Greer wrote in The Female Eunuch, “Women have very little idea of how much men hate them.” Well, now we do.

On Tuesday, faced with a choice between a highly competent if uncharismatic female candidate and the deranged distillation of the angry white male id, America chose the latter. (Or, at least, the Americans whose votes count most in the Electoral College chose the latter: Hillary Clinton won the popular vote.) We don’t yet have a full picture of the electorate, but according to exit polls published by the New York Times, 54 percent of women voted for Clinton while 53 percent of men chose Donald Trump. Men—joined by white women, a majority of whom voted for Trump—banded together to award the presidency to the most shamelessly misogynist candidate in modern history. They’ve given us a kakistrocracy because they couldn’t bear the sound of Clinton’s voice.

But we’re told it wasn’t that at all, it was a Rebellion Against The Liberal Elites, it was The Working Class Pushing Back Against Trade Deals, it was The Economy Stupid.

I don’t begrudge any Bernie Sanders supporters the consolation of thinking that their man could have saved us from this calamity. All of us are grieving, trying to make sense of the worst thing to happen to our country in modern history. All I can say is that I’ve been to Trump rallies in the Midwest, South, and Northeast, and I never saw a single sign or T-shirt about free trade. I never heard chants about NAFTA or TPP. What I heard was “Trump That Bitch” and “Build That Wall.” When Clinton delivered her heart-shredding concession speech, traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange reportedly booed and chanted “Lock her up!” They know Trump’s victory was no rebellion against Wall Street.

It would be very odd if it were, given his bank accounts and his stated views.

Clinton ran for president on an explicitly feminist platform and promised a half-female Cabinet. Her victory would have been a sign that the gender hierarchy that has always been fundamental to our society—that has always been fundamental to most societies—was starting to crumble. It would have meant that men no longer rule. We have to come to terms with the fact that a majority of men would rather burn this country to the ground than let that happen.

They’d rather punch women in the face than let it happen, too.

I thought we were going to get there. I thought my daughter was not going to be consigned to a lesser life than my son. I no longer do. We are going to lose Roe v. Wade. There will be no push for paid leave (whatever Ivanka Trump might promise) or a higher minimum wage. If Trump’s campaign is any indication, our new administration will be a priapic junta. Roger Ailes was too toxic to remain at Fox News but not too toxic to be a close Trump adviser. Campaign CEO Steve Bannon has been charged with domestic violence and accused of sexual harassment. As Indiana governor, Vice President–elect Mike Pence signed a cruel law mandating the burial or cremation of miscarried fetuses. Trump’s first campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski, grabbed a female reporter so hard he left bruises on her arm, then tried to smear her as “delusional.” Trump senior communications adviser Jason Miller took journalists to a strip club the night before the Las Vegas debate. “Women, you have to treat them like shit,” Trump once said. It might be America’s new unofficial motto.

The era of President Pussygrabber begins.

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