Behold the rallying cry of a new generation of manufactured outrage: "Stop [blank]!"
A crowd of protesters waited at the Supreme Court building Monday night, Resistance Markers in hand, ready to scrawl on their posters the name of Donald Trump's nominee who would bring about the End Times.
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"They had all these Mad Lib signs," Nebraska Sen. Ben Sasse said afterward on Fox News, smiling.
He was right to be amused. It's difficult to take someone's outrage seriously when a judge with 12 years on the Circuit Court is tried and convicted of destroying women's rights and health care in the time it takes to write BRETT KAVANAUGH in Magic Marker.
— Lyndsey Fifield (@lyndseyfifield) July 10, 2018
When President Trump announced Kavanaugh as his Supreme Court selection Monday, it was a mere afterthought for people who decided as soon as Anthony Kennedy retired that no pick Trump could ever make would be acceptable. Such an approach undermines serious criticism of the White House; when everything is the Apocalypse, it's hard to tell what is the Apocalypse—actually, it's not hard. The Apocalypse is the Apocalypse.
This dunderheaded logic starts well above a ragtag group of protesters in Washington.
The far-left Women's March was so excited to announce its opposition to [Conservative Justice Who Is Bad], it didn't bother to fill in the name of the terrible man Trump had nominated in its email blast. Instead, the dreaded Justice "XX" was the one who would bring about The Handmaid's Tale long foretold.
"In response to Donald Trump's nomination of XX to the Supreme Court of the United States, the Women's March released the following statement," the email started.
It didn't get much better from there, calling "Brett Cavenaugh's" nomination a terrible threat to the country. Well, Judge Cavenaugh could very well be a terrible jurist, but Judge Kavanaugh is quite respected and was even hired to teach at Harvard Law School by current Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan. Or to translate for the Women's March, Elainah Cagen.
Everyone needs a copy editor, example number 4,732 pic.twitter.com/8wS3WmBi1i
— Jason Seher (@jhseher) July 10, 2018
The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee fundraised off Trump's "far-right" pick more than an hour before he announced it, making an email pitch for money to stop What's His Name before he "tramples on our rights."
Democratic lawmakers have been no better. Sen. Bob Casey (D., Pa.) announced he would oppose anyone Trump nominated, no matter who it was, while Sen. Kamala Harris (D., Calif.) declared on MSNBC last month we are looking at the "destruction of the Constitution of the United States" if Trump got his pick. I guess she's a no.
Sen. Mazie Hirono (D., Hawaii), in a misguided application of the so-called "McConnell Rule," flatly said on CNN on June 27 she wouldn't consider any nominee of Trump.
"But don't you want to see who the president nominates first before deciding flatly there should be no confirmation vote between now and the midterm elections?" Wolf Blitzer asked.
"No, it doesn't matter who he is putting forward," she said.
It sure would have been awkward if Trump nominated Merrick Garland.
ABC's "Nightline" tweeted Monday night, "Tonight on Nightline, @TerryMoran reports on the controversial Supreme Court pick and the possible implications for the country."
Why, that tweet was sent at 7:23 P.M, 97 minutes before Trump walked into the East Room. How ever did ABC know who—or how controversial—it would be? Because Trump!
— Nightline (@Nightline) July 9, 2018
At worst, "Nightline" tipped its hand in preemptively performing a typical media trick: assigning the expected conservative pick the dreaded "controversial" label, which the press often uses to give itself free rein to editorialize rather than report. At best, it was poor phrasing; the program later corrected to say Moran would report "on the controversy surrounding the Supreme Court Justice pick." Not much better.
— Nightline (@Nightline) July 10, 2018
It will be harder to take arguments against Trump's nominee seriously when so many in opposition decided he would have to be stopped, before they even knew he was a he.