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Comments: Week of November 13, 2017

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1. In New York’s most recent issue, David Marchese sat down with Jimmy Kimmel, late-night’s most unlikely political voice (“In Conversation: Jimmy Kimmel,” October 30–November 12). Former Kimmel colleague Rick G. Rosner tweeted about the cover story: “Great interview with best guy in Hollywood.” And Representative Ro Khanna tweeted, “Thank you [to Kimmel] for speaking out on issues like health care and common sense gun safety.” Not everyone was convinced of the host’s new liberal bona fides, though. Laura Bradley at Vanity Fair wrote that “the comedian seemed to wear his newly earned crown reluctantly — and peppered his responses with comments that might give a few of his new fans pause … Indeed, from the interview, it’s not difficult to discern a certain conservatism to Kimmel’s outlook, despite his occasional viral anti-G.O.P. monologues.” And Bill Somers of Worthington, Ohio, wrote, “His weak excuse for not skewering [Harvey Weinstein] in his monologues just doesn’t sit right. He feigns empathy for Weinstein’s victims by protecting them from reliving the events, but how sweet would it be to see their abuser humiliated at the Oscars in front of millions.”


2. For John Kasich, the campaign against Trump has never stopped, Lisa Miller wrote in her profile (“John Kasich Is Already Running,” October 30–November 12). Darrel Rowland at the Columbus Dispatch noted, “For the past couple of years, Ohio Gov. John Kasich has given more attention to the national media than to Ohio reporters. But the time and access the Republican granted to Lisa Miller last month was perhaps unprecedented.” Fellow Ohio residents were particularly interested. “As an Ohioan who voted for Kasich, I am tired of his running for Pres. for 7 years on the Ohio payroll,” tweeted @JimZimmerman7. “Get to work for Ohio, John.” And Betty Sutton, a former congresswoman who hopes to fill Kasich’s shoes as Ohio governor, wrote, “As Lisa Miller’s article notes, labeling Governor Kasich as a reasonable alternative to President Trump misleads voters. He has sided with President Trump on many
issues. Under Kasich, Ohio’s public education rank dropped from fifth to 22nd. Our state leads in opioid-related deaths. Cities and towns are being devastated by draconian funding cuts that limit their abilities to improve their communities. Kasich’s leadership put Ohio in a position of lagging the nation in most economic indicators. Republicans have led Ohio for 24 of the last 27 years, and their policies are a proven failure.” As for whether Kasich would be better off running as a Republican or Independent, Trump’s Georgia campaign director Seth Weathers weighed in: “Depends on whether he would rather lose with (R) or (I) next to his name. Decisions, decisions, decisions …”

3. “The men who have had the power to abuse women’s bodies and psyches throughout their careers are in many cases also the ones in charge of our political and cultural stories,” Rebecca Traister wrote in the last issue (“The Harasser Story,” October 30–November 12). Writer Carmen Maria Machado responded, “I read Rebecca Traister’s excellent essay with an emotion that surprised me: grief. It put into words something terrible and critical that I had never seen articulated so clearly before — that our contempt for women has resulted in irrevocable loss on an incomprehensible scale. I wish I could say this will be a wake-up call, but the truth is men are dead asleep, and they like it that way.” And novelist Robin Wasserman reflected: “I’ve been walking around all month in a rage — Traister’s given shape and name to my inchoate anger. It’s a small comfort to see some of these men go down, but it’s a supernova-sized fury to know how many are still shaping front pages, acquiring novels, greenlighting movies, peddling their deformed vision of the world as truth.”†


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