The Women’s March fragments even more

January 2, 2019 • 10:00 am

The recent article in Tablet, “Is the Women’s March Melting Down?” (answer: yes), which revealed the anti-Semitism infusing the Women’s March (WM) leaders, as well as the resistance of women who reject that, may be a watershed moment for the Authoritarian Left. For once Leftists have pushed back against a group of women who demonize Jews and Israel in favor of Palestinians, whose own government is oppressive against gays, women, apostates, and, well, you name it. The women who called for WM leaders Sarsour, Mallory, and Perez to step down (they won’t, of course), were saying that they needn’t condone anti-Semitism to be progressive: women can stand together against the oppression of all women, no matter their ethnicity, color, or faith. I find that heartening.

So the WM continues to fragment. Tablet already reported that “numerous state chapters have broken off from the national organization—notably Houston, Washington, D.C., Alabama, Rhode IslandFloridaPortland, Illinois, Barcelona, Canada, and Women’s March GLOBAL.” New York is going to have two Women’s Marches, apparently divided by pigmentation.

Now the two articles below (from NBC News and PuffHo respectively) report not just that the Women’s March in Chicago has been canceled (their avowed reason involved financial and logistic difficulties), but that the smaller Women’s March in Eureka, California decided not to march because there was a dearth of people of color.

From NBC News:

Organizers announced Friday that the Women’s March would not take place in Eureka, in Humboldt County, California, on Jan. 19 as previously planned due to issues of representation.

“Up to this point, the participants have been overwhelmingly white, lacking representation from several perspectives in our community,” a post on the march’s Facebook page read. “Instead of pushing forward with crucial voices absent, the organizing team will take time for more outreach.”

It’s not clear what’s going on here. There’s no indication that the Eureka WM leaders deliberately pushed minorities out of the way (Humboldt County is 74% white); instead they don’t seem to have been able, for whatever reason, to recruit minority women to the WM.

From PuffHo:

The problem, the organizers said, was that the group was “lacking representation from several perspectives in our community.” It said it hoped further outreach would add those “crucial voices.”

But if they tried and failed via outreach to get minorities to join in, why should they cancel the march? It doesn’t make sense.

Reader J. J., who sent me these links, raised some other possibilities:

Since you’ve been following the Women’s March, this latest cancellation is puzzling, to say the least.  The California march is being cancelled because it’s not diverse enough — mostly white people.  That’s just weird and smacks of some kind of crackpotism. I half wonder if it’s a cover story so the California organizers won’t have to deal with the real elephant in the room, the anti-semitism of the national organizers who hijacked it.  Even if it’s not, IMO it’s an unfortunate reason to cancel the march.  How many other activities and events should POCs shut down because predominantly white people engage in them?
At first I thought it was a hoax but it’s not.
I’m not sure that POC (people of color) shut down the Eureka March; to me, at least, that’s not clear, but it’s possible.
And now, reported by Townhall (and other, mostly conservative, sites), another cancellation that gives a real reason (click on screenshot):

The 2019 Women’s March in New Orleans was cancelled Saturday due, in part, to concerns over the national Women’s March leadership’s refusal to step down following allegations of anti-Semitism. The local chapter of the group had previously planned to hold its sister march on January 19th.

National Organization for Women’s Baton Rouge chapter, which had organized the 2018 Women’s March on New Orleans, explained the reasons for the cancellation in a Facebook post.

Here’s that post:

If this were Britain, Sarsour & Company would resign immediately seeing this as a big “vote of no confidence”, and realizing that their anti-Semitism and fractiousness have split apart what should have been a unified movement.

But they won’t resign. Mallory, Perez, and Sarsour simply can’t bear to step out of the spotlight, and their real agenda wasn’t mostly the welfare of women as a whole, but identity politics connected with their own groups, groups of “people of color” (Sarsour is manifestly not a person of color, but an American-born Muslim of Palestinian ancestry.) Sarsour, I believe, is also an Islamist, using the WM to further her real agenda of spreading Islam in America (she’s a BDS supporter and favors a “one-state” solution to the Israeli/Palestine conflict, which of course is a call for the extirpation of Israel). All three leaders are deeply wedded to power, power like they’ve never had before, and they don’t want to take their hands off the rudder. Yet there are capable women—women who don’t hate Jews—who are ready to take over.

To perdition with Perez, Mallory, and Sarsour. Any woman who marches under the banner of the Women’s March, Inc. (the parent organization, now being sued for trying to trademark the name) is a woman who implicitly condones anti-Semitism.

When I was on a California NPR show (I am guessing the station here) a few months before the first Women’s March, I said that I favored the cause but disliked the identity politics that infused the rhetoric of the March and its website. I was attacked by three other guests on the show, one of whom was a Women’s March organizer.

It turns out I was right. But I take no joy in that. I just wish that good Leftist causes, like women’s equality, weren’t being blown to bits by identity-politics infighting.

37 thoughts on “The Women’s March fragments even more

  1. A sad situation, for sure. I think the best hope is that a new, egalitarian, national organization can capture the movement’s momentum. They will have to have a clearly written constitutional document to explain their intent.

    1. I sure hope so, but from up here in the cheap seats it sure looks like the momentum is almost entirely gone. That is a real tragedy.

  2. “I just wish that good Leftist causes, like women’s equality, weren’t being blown to bits by identity-politics infighting.” Good Leftist causes have a seemingly inevitable way of blowing themselves to bits, and “identity politics infighting” is only the latest symptom of a deeper malady. In the 1960s, SDS blew itself to bits over the “revolutionary” posturing of characters like John Jacobs (“We are the guerillas behind enemy lines” etc. etc. ) & Co. When I was involved in non-commercial radio, aeons ago, we often observed a related condition, which we called “microphone fever”. Our host has already noted a similar condition among the doyennes of WM Inc.

    1. Most movements that want huge changes to be made immediately experience this. To gain any status or power in the group, one must not only agree, but try to get a leg up on everyone else. The positions that must be accepted continue to become more and more extreme until the group either loses popular support/respect or becomes so divided that it can no longer be effective.

      Identity politics and intersectionality just magnify this issue and hasten its effects by explicitly pitting sub-groups within activist groups against one another from the outset.

  3. If the lesson to be learned is only this – be careful who you choose to lead your cause. Kind of the same thing with choosing who leads your country. You quickly get the same result.

    1. The problem is, most of these movements and events were initiated by whack jobs with a hidden radical agenda. (cf. The March For Science, Occupy Wall Street.) Then ordinary folks, ascribing to the ostensible (surface) ideals, join in, only to find that the show is run by … a bunch of whack jobs with a radical agenda.

      1. That seems a common pattern. It is the wack jobs that often have the ambition to get things started, and then they of course build an organization with themselves as leaders.

        1. During the Occupy thing, I organized a big bank protest. I reached out to the local Occupii, suggesting we meet to strategize. They told me I could come to the next General Assembly and wait my turn to speak. I suggested they perform an auto-erotic activity and put on a very successful event by myself & my team. They had GA’s in the park.

  4. Hell, this is a good thing. As the Hitch used to quote his buddy the human-rights activist Israel Shahak as saying, “there are encouraging signs of polarization.” The Women’s March clearly needs to clean house at the top, and it’s only the clarifying dialectic of confrontation that will work the trick.

    The sisterhood is powerful; the Women’s March, or some successor to it, will emerge the stronger on the other side.

    1. “The sisterhood is powerful; the Women’s March, or some successor to it, will emerge the stronger on the other side.”

      Or it will disappear in a puff of incoherence and bitter division. We’ll see.

  5. A statement posted to the group’s Facebook page on Monday said organizers were moving their focus toward an event on March 9 around International Women’s Day, “to ensure that the people most impacted by systems of oppression have an opportunity to participate in planning.”

    The ‘system of oppression’ having the most impact is their illogical SJW dogma.

  6. Yep, the much-needed effort toward’s women’s rights getting buried under ID politics. One thing, though: “Any woman who marches under the banner of the Women’s March, Inc. … is a woman who implicitly condones anti-Semitism.” This is too harsh. If one of their marches were the only one available in my town I’d still endorse participating since the main related news should be the march itself. In the DC marches the public face was that of the huge numbers of women.

  7. Honestly, the WM controversy highlights the reasons I got out of volunteering and discussing politics with anyone who fancies themselves a progressive. With most of these folks, in my experience, it’s not enough to be against, racism, to call it out, and even to have worked to reduce it. You need to basically cosign on a host of far-left ideas, many of which I refuse to (even though I’m not actually a political junkie or super opinionated on politics in the first place). For instance, I know people who truly believe that Otto Wambier got what he deserved on account of his “white privilege.” I don’t find that belief any less repulsive than the beliefs of the Pepe the Frog crowd.

    1. “With most of these folks, in my experience, it’s not enough to be against, racism, to call it out, and even to have worked to reduce it.”

      Hey, if that were enough, there wouldn’t be an antisemitism problem among the “progressive” crowd, considering how much of a role Jews played in the civil rights movement.

      1. Or the irony that Jewish women practically invented the women’s movement (“women’s lib”): Betty Freidan, Gloria Steinem, Bella Azberg…

  8. Regarding the Eureka march, Humboldt County isn’t just 74% white, as that’s only the non-Hispanic white part of the population. The rest of the population is as follows: 12% Hispanic (we don’t know how much of that 12% is white Hispanic), 6% Native American, 2% Asian, and 1% black.

    1. The mention of Humboldt County makes me think of the flick Homegrown, which I rather gotta kick outta, though it never got a whole lotta love from either audiences or critics.

      1. Can’t say I’ve ever seen it. I feel like I’ve heard of it, but it also seems like one of those movies that I would feel like I remember knowing about even if I never did…I’m pretty sure that makes sense, right?

        1. Makes sense, sure. But you oughta see it, BJ. A great cast — Billy Bob, Hank Azaria, John Lithgow, Kelly Lynch, Ryan Phillipe, J. Bon Jovi, and cameos by Jamie Lee Curtis and Ted Danson (among some others I can’t recall right now).

          Might not be Citizen Kane, but it’s got an off-beat rhythm and some cool performances that make it well worth seeing.

          Lemme know if you do.

          1. With that cast, I’ll definitely be seeing it soon!

            I still can’t understand why Ryan Phillipe didn’t have a more successful career. He’s not a fantastic actor, but, if put in the right role, he can really nail it. The Way of the Gun, anyone? God damn do I love that movie! His performance in the first scene (not to mention the dialogue, obviously) really sets the tone for the rest of it.

              1. It just occurred to me that Phillipe was a pretty good straight man in Macgruber as well. Not great, but good. I consider that to be one of the best comedies of the last decade, though that’s not because of Ryan Phillipe.

  9. I really have no idea about the politics of the writer of this article. Darwinist academics are almost always groupthink lefties (i think) but also tend to be trapped in modernity as far as non-moral truth is concerned. So their natural party is also the SJW party. Someone care to explain? I’m not from the USA.

    1. Sure thing. But first, define your terms:
      – “Darwinist academic”;
      – “Modernity”;
      – “non-moral truth”;
      – “the SJW party”.

    2. ‘Darwinist academics’?
      Outside religious institutions I doubt whether there are any non Darwinist academics
      If by Darwinist you mean people who accept that evolution is the best explanation for that aspect of reality.
      So, given the diversity of political opinion among academics, and the world in general, you are wrong.
      So no explanation is needed.

  10. I agree with everything that PCC has written and continues to write about anti-Semitism in the Women’s March movement and particularly among its leaders. I agree with some of what he says about the BDS movement. This is his forum, so it is his right to pick and choose his subjects. However, I would be very interested in what he has to say about the rapprochement between Benjamin Netanyahu’s government and far right (and anti-Semitic) movements in Hungary and Brazil and elsewhere.

  11. Pretty much the same problem that the atheist movement ran into.

    You see the problem is that movements cannot be all inclusive, they have to focus on what they’re about.

    The trouble with intersectionality is that it cannot have nuance. You cannot have “I agree with you on this, I disagree with you on that” – and thus actually working together with intersectionalists is inevitably the death knell of your movement.

    Note what happened when a blogger FTB gave a speech at CPAC in which she stated her conservatism.

    So we look at the Women’s March. Antisemitism shouldn’t have come up, but because intersectionalists wanted to include messages that had sweet fuck all to really do with the core aims of the Women’s March.

    What you think about sexism in America has no real bearing on what you think of Israel or Palestine, but no they had to be good little intersectionalists and include issues regarding a religion which pretty much defines a woman as being half the worth of a man in a march for gender equality.

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