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Rep. Dan Crenshaw asks soldiers to report ‘wokeness’ in military ranks, is trolled into oblivion

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Continuing the Republican tradition of pretending at maximum manly toughness while thumping through life with shows of oddly weaponized gutlessness, it’s Texas Rep. Dan Crenshaw and Arkansaw’s Sen. Tom Cotton leading a new charge against Rampant Theoretical Wokeness in our nation’s tough manly military. Crenshaw announced it on Twitter with suitable turgidity: “We won’t let our military fall to woke ideology,” he puffed. The Crenshaw-Cotton response is a new “whistleblower webpage” where you can “submit your story” of being, um, exposed to Wokeness. He promises to expose the “spineless military commanders” who have failed to oppose “progressive Pentagon staffers” who “have been calling the shots.”

This feels a tiny bit like Biff and Taller Biff demanding the military oppose civilian control and “call the shots” themselves, but we’re probably imagining that. Both Republicans have shown a truly stellar understanding of our military’s structure and enforced limitations in the past, which is why most of America knows their names despite neither Biff showing much success in any government sphere that does not involve self-promotional shitposting.

Crenshaw and Cotton’s push here is part of a larger Republican attack on the military for perceived anti-conservatism, and immediately follows a Sen. Ted Cruz bit of buffoonery in which he compared the turgid manliness of Russia’s military recruitment posters, under Vlad Putin, to the “woke, emasculated military” of the United States.

It’s an organized Republican campaign to portray the military as “weak” so that conservative-minded changes can be made. Crenshaw and Cotton’s quasi-populist, more-quasi-fascist goal is to ignite partisan battles within the military command itself—the promise to “expose” commanders that do not oppose Crenshaw-identified “woke” policies makes that clear enough—so that the military can be purged of conservatism’s enemies in the same manner that Trump’s allies purged whistleblowers, watchdogs, and perceived critics from civilian government agencies.

With Crenshaw’s crude attempt, however, it was evident what was going to happen next. First, Crenshaw was going to start collecting some painfully butthurt stories from conservative soldiers upset that their new commander is a womanfolk or whatever, and after months of sorting through all the ones too obviously racist or sexist or ridiculous to put his name to will come up with some that Tucker Carlson can print out and roll around in on live television.

Second, it was a certainty that Crenshaw’s little form was going to be absolutely overrun by Americans trolling Crenshaw with frightening incidents of “wokeness” that may or may not have been culled from movies, television shows, or their own imaginations. Americans do not like dullminded fascists pursuing their own pet purges, and giving them an easy public opening to make that point clear will always, always result in what you think it will result in.

The Washington Post has a rundown of just a small bit of the resulting chaos, but a shorter version still would be that everyone can blame lawyer-commenter Ken White, aka @Popehat, for this one. It’s all his fault.

Settle in, we’re gonna be here a while.

Now, this is Rep. Dan Crenshaw we are talking about, and Rep. Dan Crenshaw does not appear to have surrounded himself with Trumpian acolytes any more competent than the ones Trump himself surrounded himself with. There is a chance, and possibly a good chance, that we’re going to see something extremely similar to these complaints show up in the actual whistleblower complaints Crenshaw decides to go public with.

That still doesn’t mean Crenshaw and Cotton can’t do some serious damage in their attempt to incite open partisan warfare in as many military bases as they can muster, but it doesn’t look like the rest of America will be making it easy for them. And good on America for it. Think of it as doing Crenshaw a favor, in fact: The only way to keep a snowflake happy is to dump snow on it, right? Wouldn’t want one of these weirdos to melt away during a Fox News appearance.


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Video of Black woman being dragged by her hair in sports bar ignites protests in Washington, D.C.

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Young elaborated on her experience, saying, “It was an altercation in there … They were trying to get some other people out because somebody else brought a bottle in there. Somehow I got mixed up in an altercation because I look like somebody else … And I got hit and dragged down the steps.” She stressed she did “nothing wrong” and she remembers simply walking up the steps and then “being dragged right back down the steps.”

When asked what it was like to see the video of herself being dragged by the steps, she said, “It’s a little bit much.”

You can watch that interview below.

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“An apology is not going to get rid of the bruises on my body,” Young said in response to the statement issued by Nellie’s, as reported by local outlet WJLA. The same outlet reports that it contacted the Metropolitan Police Department and was told they received no service calls for Nellie’s related to the incident. 

Some protesters marched to the home of the owner of Nellie’s, also located in the U street neighborhood, which you can see below.

And here are videos and images from the protest, where people share why they’re showing up for the young woman in the video, and why it’s especially important during Pride Month. 

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Nellie’s posted a statement to Facebook, saying: “We were incredibly upset and disturbed to see the unfortunate event that took place at Nellie’s last night. We are undergoing a full investigation of the situation. At Nellie’s we foster an inclusive and safe environment, so events like this are completely unacceptable to us.”

This incident is not the first time Nellie’s has had to issue an apology—you might remember that back in 2017, the popular sports bar apologized after displaying a “blue line” flag. The establishment removed the flag, but people—and especially people of color—have not forgotten.

You can watch coverage of the protest, and the interview with Young, below.

And lastly, you can view the video of the incident below. As a warning, the violence is graphic and may be disturbing to viewers. 


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One woman killed and three people injured as vehicle rams into protesters in Minnesota

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Police said that alcohol or drugs may have been a factor in the driver’s actions, but this must not be treated as an isolated incident: Last summer, according to USA Today, there were “at least 104 incidents of people driving vehicles into protests from May 27 through Sept. 5.” In eight of those cases, police were the drivers.

And Republican lawmakers have rushed to offer protections to drivers who injure protesters in this way. Iowa, Oklahoma, and Florida have all reduced or abolished penalties for such drivers, with the Iowa and Florida laws offering civil immunity and the Oklahoma law protecting drivers from criminal penalties when they “unintentionally causes injury or death to an individual” while “fleeing from a riot” and “under a reasonable belief that fleeing was necessary to protect the motor vehicle operator from serious injury or death.” Which just means every driver who does this will claim they were fleeing under a reasonable belief that their life was at risk. 

The Washington Post’s Philip Bump likens such laws to “stand your ground” laws, writing, “A Rand Corp. study found that states with ‘stand your ground’ laws allowing residents to use firearms in self-defense were states that had more firearm homicides. Allowing people to use guns to kill in some circumstances correlated with more people using guns to kill.”

The laws letting drivers off the hook for injuring or even killing protesters came amid a wave of state-level legislation targeting protesters in other ways. In a sense it’s similar to the Republican push to ban the teaching of “critical race theory” (by which they mean “anything about racism”) from schools. Republicans are trying to criminalize any effort to change U.S. culture and society to make it less racist or less unjust. In this case, they are actively encouraging murder.


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Federal judge dismisses anti-vaxxers’ lawsuit, sides with Texas hospital

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Despite the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission supporting policies that employers could require “all employees physically entering the workplace to be vaccinated for COVID-19,” at least 117 employees of the company attempted to sue the hospital claiming it violated state policy and made them “human guinea pigs.” 

According to the plaintiffs, federal law prohibits employees from being required to get vaccinated without full U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval of the vaccines. While the lawsuit was filed in Texas state court, it was moved to federal court at Houston Methodist’s request. As a result, U.S. District Judge Lynn N. Hughes ruled Saturday that federal law does not prevent employers from issuing that mandate because the law in question did not apply to private employers. 

“The hospital’s employees are not participants in a human trial,” Hughes wrote. “They are licensed doctors, nurses, medical technicians, and staff members. The hospital has not applied to test the COVID-19 vaccines on its employees.”

He continued that the mandate was a way to make the environment safer for both employees and patients. “This is not coercion. Methodist is trying to do their business of saving lives without giving them the Covid-19 virus. It is a choice made to keep staff, patients and their families safer.”

Hughes’ ruling addressed each and every one of the plaintiffs’ arguments including the vaccination requirement violating Texas law and a comparison to forced medical experiments in Nazi Germany. “Equating the injection requirement to medical experimentation in concentration camps is reprehensible,” Hughes wrote. “Nazi doctors conducted medical experiments on victims that caused pain, mutilation, permanent disability, and in many cases, death.”

Ultimately Hughes concluded that the plaintiffs “misconstrued” the law and “misrepresented the facts” and “will take nothing” from the hospital. If they had an issue with the policies in place, they should seek employment elsewhere, he wrote.

Upon hearing the ruling, lead plaintiff Jennifer Bridges noted that she would continue to fight her case. “This doesn’t surprise me,” she told USA Today. “Methodist is a very large company, and they are pretty well-protected in a lot of areas. We knew this was going to be a huge fight, and we are prepared to fight it.” Bridges has also started a petition against mandatory vaccinations by employers.

In response to the ruling, attorney and conservative activist Jared Woodfill who represents her and the other 116 plaintiffs said: “We took the position that it shouldn’t be dismissed for a whole host of reasons and we believe that forcing an individual to participate in a vaccine trial is illegal.”

“This is the first battle in a long fight,” Woodfill continued. “There are going to be many battles fought. Not just in this courtroom, but in courtrooms all across the state. There are battles that are going to be fought in the higher courts, the 5th Circuit, the Texas Supreme Court, even the United States Supreme Court. So this is just one battle in a larger war. It’s the first round, if you will.”

Woodfill confirmed that they would appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court “if necessary.”

So despite the judge noting and clearly addressing that they had no case, the plaintiffs refuse to back down.

The employees who were suspended from their roles made up only 1% of the hospital’s total number of employees, according to Houston Methodist CEO Marc Boom. Boom noted that many other hospitals are working on similar initiatives but were only waiting on this case’s verdict to take action. “We can now put this behind us and continue our focus on unparalleled safety, quality, service and innovation,” Boom said after the ruling. “Our employees and physicians made their decisions for our patients, who are always at the center of everything we do.”

According to CBS News, as of this report, nearly 25,000 Houston Methodist employees had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and at least two employees who worked in management chose to leave rather than receive the vaccine.


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