This fawning Pozzfeed piece on the angry and energized women who flocked to BETA OʹRourkeʹs campaign is pretty interesting.
A few details struck me. First – making allowances for potential Fake News exaggeration – the remarkable enthusiasm of these female groupies and their willingness to volunteer their time for Beta’s campaign.
Second, their scolding, self-righteous attitude towards all men, and the astonishing self-abasement of the men around them, including Beta.
Third, the role of the 2017 Women’s March – itself a response to the 2016 election – as a seismic event that activated many of these women to get involved in politics, after a lifetime of passivity.
No doubt the Betamania was propped up by Democratic money and organizational support, but it also drew much of its energy from a hydrothermal vent of organic female hysteria. Trump’s victory unleashed something deep and dark in the female psyche, and the effects are still rippling through the body politic: #Resist, #MeToo, #TimesUp, and now this.
I think we may be seeing something like a revival of the women-led Temperance Movement of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, translated into the modern vernacular of feminism (“Temperance” –> #TimesUp), and without the Christian overtones of the TM. It’s a pseudo-religious movement, but the god they are worshiping is not God.
“I remember this time, two years ago, when women were hiding their energy in secret Facebook groups,” one woman told me, referring to groups like Pantsuit Nation that flourished in the days leading up to the 2016 election. “Righteous, visible anger is much better.”