When the Insurrection Comes Home
Georgetown is a popular and lively part of Washington, DC with quite a few bars and upscale restaurants. It attracts college students and young adults on the way up. A resident of nearby Northern Virginia and a friend of mine, Prof. David Bernstein of Antonin Scalia Law School, posted yesterday about a revealing episode on a Georgetown street — an episode relevant to this blog and beyond.
There’s a Twitter account, with video, by activists last night in DC talking about how they illegally closed off streets in Georgetown, and then “demanded” that people not use those streets. One woman tried to drive around them. The activists, as per the video, surrounded her car, jumped on the hood, and were screaming at her. They claim they just wanted her to turn around, but I’m not sure how they think she was supposed to do so this, being surrounded and having people on her hood and all. So she honked her horn and proceeded slowly. And then the “activists” are all mad that the police come and question them, rather than the driver. Near as I can tell, everything the driver did was legal. Everything the activists did was illegal.
It has become the conventional wisdom that Donald Trump’s recent sag in the polls is driven by affluent, college-educated women — people who have had enough of the President’s tweets and overall deportment, and no longer see the robust economy that was his main selling point. One must wonder whether, when episodes like the one Prof. Bernstein describes become widespread, the President’s polling will start to turn around. To paraphrase the old bromide, a conservative is a liberal whose trip into Georgetown got terrorized by hoodlums.
UPDATE: I came across a YouTube recording of another episode yesterday in Georgetown. It’s not as bad as surrounding and terrorizing a motorist, and certainly nowhere near as bad as brick throwing, looting and arson. But in its way, it’s at least as revealing about what these “activists” are really up to. It has beans to do with what anyone could take to be racial justice, or The Inequities of Capitalism. It’s just lazy man’s nihilism — making random other people’s lives unpleasant and frightening for the sneering fun of it. A society unwilling or unable to bring this to a stop, and do so without apology, is — as we are seeing every day — a society that’s inviting, and that will get, a great deal worse. It all grows in the same Petri dish.