On Uber Bullies

The reassuring platitudes are just that.

Real bullies, talented bullies, powerful clowns, they don’t give up easy. Career bullies remain successful long after their tantrums and projectile inadequacy have flamed out because of their intense commitment to self-aggrandizement. If you get tired of beating people up, there’s always time to gloat about it. They do what they do because they can, and they are fully convinced they should be admired for this willfulness.

And that is the Uber Bullies oxygen: permission, access, authority. They seek to grant themselves authority by force because they know they can’t be rejected if they take it for themselves. They are terrified of rejection beyond any imaginable scale. Bullies crave control because, inside, they are devoid of it. But the best bullies ride their hurricane id long past making landfall, and it appears we will have to deal with sustained howls of wind across the Beltway for at least some sufficiently perilous amount of time for now.

There is a path to peace though. When faced with a Uber Bully and their crowd of jeering hangers-on, when subjected to their professional saboteurs of all that is humane, there is an emotional territory we can all occupy that makes all the difference between contending with the rules that govern social order and rolling over for petty, fearful men with monstrous appetites for the respect they can not give themselves.

That unbreakable sanctuary lies at the core of you, in the part that refuses to change your tune. It is the part of you that demands to be exactly who you want to be.

Whatever your truest conviction is, whether it be a social justice activist at the gates of Trump Tower or a parent who just wants the best for their kids, you can be your conviction. You can chant your conviction. You can paint it. You can protest with it. You can invite others in to witness it and be there for their reveal. You can stand firm and simply do what you do best in silent affirmation that “I simply won’t be moved by your BS.”

But for God’s sake, don’t wander through the forest of public debate talking about your convictions at a time like this. Yes, information is important but being informed demands self-awareness. You can’t just retweet or share that.

Don’t feed the beast with more words and knee-jerk anxiety. They live for words and stories because they are built to be emotionally manipulated. The Uber Bullies live for words because they can stand in as a convenient proxy for the violence they visit on everyone who is not as in need of reassurance as they are.

Be your story. Embody the middle finger. Turn the volume up on yourself until your speakers burst. Be excellent with your own permission. Do exactly what you want to do with the people you wish to do it. Be luxuriously happy. When you fight back, fight with gleeful expectation not of winning, but of simply taking a chunk out of the bully.

Bullies, even Uber Bullies like Trump, Bannon and their ilk, don’t know what do with someone they can’t control. They don’t know what to do with someone who doesn’t care about winning, who just wants to take a happy chunk out of them no matter the consequences.

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