Vanity Fair’s expose on the Women’s March movement is lit, and this devil is happy:
Mercy Morganfield, a longtime activist and daughter of blues legend Muddy Waters, has been one of the leading voices in calling for accountability from the co-chairs. For Morganfield, a former spokesperson for the Women’s March who also ran the D.C. branch, the various problems that people have had with the Women’s March—ideological, managerial, fiscal—should be seen as all of a piece. She recalled being startled earlier this year when Mallory—already a nationally recognized leader of the Women’s March—showed up at the Nation of Islam’s Saviours’ Day event.
“When all of that went down, it was my last straw,” she told Tablet. “You are part of a national movement that is about the equality of women and you are sitting in the front row listening to a man say women belong in the kitchen and you’re nodding your head saying amen! I told them over and over again: It’s fine to be religious, but there is no place for religion in its radical forms inside of a national women’s movement with so many types of women. It spoke to their inexperience and inability to hold this at a national stage. That is judgment, and you can’t teach judgment.”
Does that go for mainstream Islam? Or just for the “Black Muslims” of the Nation of Islam?
“They don’t have a clue what they’re doing,” Morganfield told Tablet. “They were chosen for optics—for the image they brought to the march. They believe that being in the right place at the right time for this march and this movement made them the founders—but it didn’t.”
These people presented as national leaders are really just co-opting genuine grass roots movements started via social media. They are frauds. You didn’t really think Tamika Mallory and Linda Sarsour are talented organizers, managers, leaders?
But they do bring value as figureheads, and this is very much a racket:
The Women’s March was obviously on its way to becoming a valuable brand, receiving millions of dollars in donations and raking in millions more worth of merchandise: T-shirts, pins, bags, mugs, and more. It began coordinating with a merchandising partner, The Outrage, which describes itself as a “female-founded activist apparel company.” (The Outrage also has a line with actress-turned-activist Rose McGowan, complete with #RoseArmy merch.)
And in March of 2017, Women’s March Inc. filed a federal trademark registration for the Women’s March with the United States Patent and Trademark Office. It was met with much opposition. As Refinery29 reported, 14 separate organizations opposed the mark. “You do not trademark a movement,” Shook told us. “The Women’s March should belong to all of us. The sister marches don’t get a dime. They’ve been asked to be transparent over and over.” Keep in mind the people jockeying for position in these fund-raising entities are relying on the volunteer true-believers, as is pointed out earlier in the article.
But whatever concerns were popping up were ultimately no match for the steamroller of the event’s progress. And when the day came, the reality far exceeded expectations. Estimates for the March on Washington range between half a million and a million people, giving the city’s metro system its second busiest day in history. Estimates for all the Women’s Marches that took place in cities across the country, had between 3.6 and 4.6 million people participating. In terms of attendance and publicity, the event was an enormous, iconic success. It took the swirling, latent energy of the country’s broad political opposition to Trump and turned it into a dramatic showing of strength.
Like a gold strike the March attracted prospectors, speculators and con men.