At Glamour magazine’s Women of the Year Awards we expected to hear women uplift each other, instead the audience was led in a chanting of “Impeach Him!” It’s emblematic of a mindset that says we have to tear men down to build women up.
California Representative Maxine Waters was honored by Glamour magazine with the Woman of the Year Lifetime Achievement Award this week. Waters who rose to social media celebrity fame thanks to her slogan “reclaiming my time” during a congressional meeting this summer.
During her four-minute acceptance speech, “Auntie Maxine” as she is called, led a chant on stage of “Impeach 45!”
First, she encouraged young women to register and get involved, which seemed appropriate until her partisan politics spilled out:
“I am so pleased to see the interest and concern you are showing at what is happening at the highest levels of government. I see you and I hear you. And I encourage you not only to vote, to register, to get involved.”
Except, she added that women should get involved with “progressive organizations” not any organization that they are passionate about.
Then, she reminded us that our democracy being at stake. We can’t argue with that. As Ronald Regan said, “Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction.” The problem is that she called on progressive warrior and young people to defend it. Are independents, conservatives, and libertarians really the evil villains tearing apart our nation?
Finally, she takes aim at one of her favorite targets, President Trump:
"Ladies and gentlemen and to our young people, in particular, you recognize when a leader is irresponsible. You recognize when a leader is dishonorable and disrespectful of you," Waters said. "You recognize when a leader is dangerous. Even if that leader is the President of the United States of America. And I want you to have the courage and I want you to know that you can stand up to him or anybody else."
"And for those who say to me, 'You are asking for something too soon and too early, be careful, don't jeopardize yourself, don't say what you’re saying right now but I'll continue to say, 'Impeach him!' Impeach him! Impeach him!" Waters said to wild applause and a standing ovation.
"Impeach 45!" she yelled.
"Impeach 45!" the audience yelled back.
"I didn't hear you! Impeach 45!" she led the chant again.
The audience responded with a healthy 'Impeach 45!' cheer.
This is exactly why Auntie Maxine earned her award. As Glamour explained it she was selected for “speaking to truth to power” by wielding “her unapologetically laser-sharp tongue—surgical in its precision, devastating in its impact—in service of her progressive politics.” She once told members of the Tea Party movement they can “go straight to hell.”
If only Glamour considered more than how much a lawmaker pushes the #resist movement, they may have considered that Waters has major character and integrity deficits. As my colleague Carrie Lukas pointed out recently, “[Waters] received another title from Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington: One of DC’s “most corrupt” legislators, for her shady business dealings, in which she used her office to enrich her family.”
Instead of encouraging resistance to any positive change that the Trump Administration and Congress can deliver to women and young people, Waters could be working for bipartisanship on the issues that matter. Similaly, Glamour missed a chance to reach out to independent and conservative women by valuing more than just politics.
As Glamour and Waters dig deeper into progressive politics, they will continue to alienate women who are tired of the division in our nation.