Douchebag Decree: Jan Brewer


Did someone forget to cc Jan Brewer on the check-your-racial-privilege memo? Brewer became the focus of much debate this week when an AP photo caught her pointing her finger at President Obama in a manner fraught with gender and race politics. “Finger wagging” doesn’t really sum up the tense moment on the tarmac: Brewer is using her white privilege to mask her anger, in an attempt to assert power over Obama. The little power play at the Phoenix Airport speaks to the age-old stereotype of black men being seen as a threat to white women, and the fact that Jan Brewer took advantage of that earns her this week’s Douchebag Decree.

Brewer capitalized on the incident by appearing on several news stations (check out an excerpted Fox News clip in this MSNBC discussion) and boasting that the President “took umbrage” at the depiction of him in Brewer’s book, Scorpion’s for Breakfast. A post at the Crunk Feminist Collective explains just how Brewer’s white rage goes unnoticed here. Her whiteness gives her the freedom to express anger in personal and public interactions; black rage, on the other hand, gets attention called to it. Brewer baited Obama with the confrontation on the tarmac because any anger on President Obama’s part doesn’t come with the gendered, racialized protections that her anger does.

For a bit more on the topic, check out this clip from Jane Elliott’s The Angry Eye that explains how authority, race and anger intersect:

Anti-racist wrecking ball Jane Elliott simulates racial privilege in a tense confrontation with a student.

Brewer’s outburst fits in with the anger-driven politics playing out in Arizona surrounding the ban on ethnic studies programs at the Tuscon Unified School District. John Huppenthal played on voter’s fears by pledging to “stop La Raza,” which basically translates to halting any progress for Chicano peoples. Such unreasonable demands are again protected by the invisibility of white rage, just like Brewer’s disrespectful finger pointing.

Even more disgusting than Brewer’s actions towards President Obama are her ulterior motives: Her book vaulted 200,000 places in Amazon rankings to number 35 on Monday. Gross move, Jan. 

Previously: Stephen “Republicans and Democrats Sitting Together Is Like Date Rape” Moore,” Tuscon Public School Officials Ban Ethnic Studies Programs and Shelve Books

by Mac Pogue
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5 Comments Have Been Posted

It's even worst that she had

It's even worst that she had the audacity to say she was "threatened"/ Yes, because the president of the United states would slap you across the face.

Just. Plain. Rude.

Finger-pointing is downright rude no matter what the situation or conversation. Good call on this one!

threatened by vs. deference to

I think you're supposed to feel threatened by the President, with the dark suit and the secret service detail and the finger on the proverbial button and the hey hey and the whatnot. Well, I suppose you're supposed to feel deference to the President...Unless something about the president, such as his race, prevents you from feeling that deference and you instead feel threatened by this person having so much power. That something is probably racism. This will probably become political, but could be such a learning moment. Wouldn't we be such a better country if, instead of putting up a poster of MLK for black history month, we were talking about how this picture represents how we continue to struggle with racism?

I usually agree with the

I usually agree with the Douchebag of the week... usually to the point of sitting at my desk at work for a bit stewing over how pissed off I am after reading your article. But this one... well, finger-pointing is rude. This situation makes her look like an entitled bitch.

However, after this week, ALL I HAVE TO SAY IS KAREN HANDEL.

TRUE douchebag of the week.

President Obama, having been

President Obama, having been raised by a Caucasian mother and Caucasian grandmother, is very familiar with the inexplicable "ways" of a certain type of person. He even detailed that, while he loved his grandmother, how she would all of a sudden become "threatened" at the very sight of a Black man (doing nothing but minding his own business). It made him sad, but I'm also sure that it taught him an important lesson. When Governor Brewer found she couldn't subjugate President Obama with her stupid finger, she panicked and initiated Plan B in another desperate attempt to subjugate President Obama to her so-called fear. We all know the game called "The Black Man Did It." However, since Obama's upbringing familiarized him with passive-aggression, he knew how to play it--walk away, find someone with common sense to talk to. That's how you deal with a manipulator--YOU DON'T. And always have a witness to verify the reality of the passive-aggressive's nasty behavior, which Obama did. Sarah Palin, Michelle Bachman, and Jan Brewer really seem to take the very sight of President Obama very personally, waiting for just the right moment to run away crying fake tears claiming to have been threatened by him. That's a nasty game, Brewer, but you played YOURSELF this time and we all saw it. EVERYONE who didn't know your ways before knows now, you alcoholic, petty, grifting, nasty, trifling liar.

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