Instead of hiding behind civility, maybe its time for us to shame those flouting decency and norms
Should Trump hirelings be confronted in restaurants? Delightful as it was when the presidents press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, became the latest of his favourites to be thus embarrassed, the resulting civility debate has seemed fairly, viewed from the UK, theoretical.
Few British restaurant owners will ever have to have to choose, as did Virginia restaurateur Stephanie Wilkinson, between adherence to long-cherished codes of civility and the clear risks of denying service to someone who has chosen, like Sanders, to promote the interests of a child-caging, homophobic, woman-molesting, massacre-finessing, Putin-appeasing barbarian. (Huckabee Sanders was evicted before Trump also barged in front of a 92-year-old woman he had kept standing in the heat.)
Equally, even with our own prominent Trump loyalists Farage, Johnson, Gove, Murdoch, Morgan, Banks what are the chances, for a UK citizen, of finding one at the next table? But that their particular perversion appears, mercifully, relatively rare does not, as Becca Harrison has just demonstrated, mean we should not make contingency plans.
Shortly after Piers Morgans latest prostration before Donald Trump the one involving free chocolate Harrison found herself, she writes in the New Statesman, sitting in the same Kensington cafe as the interviewer. She used Twitter to ask if she should and then confirm that she did go over and call him a fascist-enabling cunt who was doing serious damage to our country.
Morgan, adhering to the Trump template for women-humbling, tweeted back, in effect, that Harrison was insufficiently physically pleasing for him to take her seriously. Beyond, that is, alerting his zillions of followers to this outrage. She should, he tweeted, update her profile picture been a few years hasnt it.
Before Kensington cafes are inundated by women hoping, with the help of this authority, to gauge their own claim to self-expression, its probably worth adding that Morgan, following Harrisons NS piece, said it made him glad he was (temporarily) leaving the country: People are losing their minds.
Usefully, as he confirms the huge potential of homegrown, restaurant-based resistance, Morgan also offers some hints to future protesters. Even if the c-word can seem to many of us all right, to me in one of the Referendums many unintended consequences, the only word that, in private, adequately represents the architects of Brexit, that word also permitted Morgan to portray himself as a bit of a victim, even to people who abhor him.
No ingratitude, or disrespect to Harrison, a protest pioneer who chose an obviously accurate term under pressure of time, but that epithet, as opposed to fascist, now assists Morgan, the UKs premier pussy-grabbing apologist, lead bitcher at snowflakes, grotesque Madonna and feminist fraud Emma Watson, to diddumise himself as the victim of a foul-mouthed madwoman. (Harrison is a university lecturer and writer.)
Compare that with the difficulties of Huckabee Sanders and her civility-minded sympathisers, in explaining why restaurant protesters who have seized these chances directly to address high-status brutes should have allowed eating-out norms to mute righteous engagement. Stephanie Wilkinson remained, when reclaiming her restaurant table, infinitely more civil than Huckabee Sanders, with her well-known fondness for insulting journalists. Similarly, the US teacher Kristin Mink demonstrated, when she approached Scott Pruitt Trumps lead environmental trasher, investigated for the misuse of government funds that it is possible to retain the moral high ground even as you ruin someones meal. Civilly, child on hip, she asked Pruitt to resign, before your scandals push you out. He quit days later.