Chicago Women’s March canceled

The “big” Women’s March, run by the Women’s March Inc. (a trademark now contested by other branches), will take place in Washington, D.C. on January 19, as well as in several other cities. But some cities won’t be having them, while others, like New York City, will have two marches, one for women of color and the other including Jewish women, who see the Women’s March, Inc. as led by anti-Semites.

One of the cities that won’t be having a Women’s March this year is my town, Chicago, as reported by the Chicago Tribune (click on screenshot below):

To be fair, the local branch has objected to the Trib’s original headline which, thanks to reader Historian, I’ve recovered:

The new headline gives the reason adduced by the organizers—finances:

As controversy swells around national Women’s March organizers, the local group has decided not to host a march in January — an event that for the past two years drew hundreds of thousands of supporters to Grant Park in concert with similar marches across the globe.

While Women’s March Chicago organizers cited high costs and limited volunteer hours as the main reasons for nixing the annual rally and march, the break comes amid splintering within the national Women’s March leadership following accusations of anti-Semitism and scrutiny of its ties to Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan.

A Townhall report (below) adds this:

Spokesperson Harlene Ellin of the Chicago Women’s March told Townhall that The Tribune’s headline and reporting were “inaccurate and inflammatory.” While also stating that since “The Tribune has apologized and updated the headline.”

Ellin continued by stating to Townhall, “I’m sorry but the reality is not as ‘sexy.’ The march was not ‘nixed’ as the original Tribune headline stated. Women’s March Chicago decided to hold our march early to have an impact on the midterm elections.”

Yet the Tribune’s report still implies that maybe there was a wee role of the kerfuffle over anti-Semitism:

The announcement elicited a range of reactions on the Women’s March Chicago Facebook page.

“This is disappointing,” one member wrote. “Women continue fighting to be heard in this patronizing patriarchal society. We are not done.”

Some made plans to join marches in other cities instead.

“Going back to D.C.!” another member wrote. “There’s too much to march for!”

Others expressed support for the choice to forgo a January march.

“A lot has come to light about national in the last year,” one member wrote. “I support not marching with them.”

And this (my emphasis):

Women’s March Chicago organizers say they are a grassroots group not directly affiliated with Women’s March Inc., though past local marches have been held in sync with the national group and other similar marches across the country. While the decision to forgo a January march wasn’t based on recent controversy, Kurensky said the opportunity to further distance the Chicago organization from national Women’s March leaders was a “side benefit.”

“That sort of infighting within the movement is very painful. It’s very painful to watch,” she said. “When a handful of leaders … say something, they are not speaking for an entire movement.”

Women’s March Chicago leaders also denounced anti-Semitism and Farrakhan’s February comments.

The report at Townhall (click on screenshot below) gives links to responses from the co-leaders of the Women’s March, Inc.: Tamika Mallory, Linda Sarsour, and Carmen Perez:

Do watch the video mentioned below.

Given the prominence of the Women’s March in US politics — Democratic Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand of New York called the organization’s leadership “the suffragists of our time” in a blurb for Time magazine’s 100 Most Influential People of 2017 — the muted response to the Tablet article is puzzling. But what’s even stranger has been the Women’s March’s response.

. . . In a video posted to Tamika Mallory’s Facebook page, Mallory — flanked by Sarsour and Perez — said that instead of wasting time by responding to reporters’ queries, they want to have a “public conversation” with Wruble, Harmon, and Morganfield.

“These three women have lied on us,” Mallory said. “We want to have these conversations in public, not behind closed doors, but in public. So we challenge the three of” — at which point the video abruptly cuts off.

Sarsour wrote a long post to her Facebook page, which read, in part: “The headlines, the character assassination, the undermining of leadership, discreditation campaigns are nothing new but in fact a bedrock of American society when the status quo is challenged.” Sarsour added: “A million newspapers can write and for those of us who are Black and Brown and from communities under attack — we cannot let hurtful and unvetted words by those who have the luxury of speaking but not fighting to take us off our tracks.”

Click on the video screenshot to go to its page, and the abrupt cutoff when the challenge was, for some reason, deleted:

You can read Sarsour’s response at the link above. But be warned: it’s solipsistic, full of hubris, whiny, and goes more or less like this: “I didn’t choose this life. This life chose me. . ” (direct quote), and I can’t quit it [shades of Brokeback Mountain], as I am in it too deep and I am too caring and it’s hurt my life. And people like me who want progress are always defamed and vilified  by the haters who simply don’t like Black and Brown women, and so on. She ends by saying, “My question to all of you is what side do you want to be on?”. My response is: “Not the side of Jew haters, sister!”

In the past few months Sarsour, Mallory, and Perez have tried to emphasize, by issuing statements in the name of the Women’s March, that they decry Farrakhan’s anti-Semitism and really do love their Jewish sisters. I don’t believe them for a minute—not in view of what Tablet reported about their statements about Jews at the first Women’s March meeting—statements verified by the March’s communication’s director. The statements issued recently by the March decrying anti-Semitism are simply damage control by a triumverate of women who would love nothing more than the extirpation of Israel as a country.  I don’t believe what people say when they’re trying to save their organization and keep their reputations intact, especially when they’re said opposite things in the past. And I’ve decided it’s okay to say you don’t believe someone if you have good reasons to think them liars.

By the way, the statement below is pinned at the top of Linda Sarsour’s Twitter feed. (Curiously—perhaps because of the Women’s March fracas—she hasn’t posted there since October 27.)

What this really means, of course, is this: “If you disagree with me, you are by definition oppressing me and denying my humanity and right to exist.”


  1. Diana MacPherson
    Posted December 27, 2018 at 9:27 am | Permalink

    This fracturing will just push on the fence white women, a majority whose support they need, more to the Right. I wouldn’t want to be a part of a movement that berated me like they were berating the one white woman in the leadership. Why would anyone?

  2. Randall Schenck
    Posted December 27, 2018 at 9:29 am | Permalink

    They kind of remind me of Trump in some ways. Don’t know when to quit when they are behind. If I go down I’m taking everyone with me.

    • Diana MacPherson
      Posted December 27, 2018 at 9:31 am | Permalink

      Yes, because, like Trump, power is everything to them. They don’t want to lead the march for the good of anyone; they want to lead the march for the power it brings.

      • Mikeyc
        Posted December 27, 2018 at 9:43 am | Permalink

        It does feel good to see their desperation as that power (and money) slips away, but it’s a real shame it’s going to cost the WM.

        • Diana MacPherson
          Posted December 27, 2018 at 9:46 am | Permalink

          Yeah, I feel the same. It’s good that people are starting to see and reject what they really stand for but at the same time it’s such an opportunity cost! I would be inclined to praise them for the hard work they did in organizing and executing the march but because it’s motivated purely for the power and attention it brings, I can’t do that. The whole thing is tainted. It has become just another failed power grab like so many other group endeavours.

    • Posted December 28, 2018 at 3:25 pm | Permalink

      I immediately thought how Trump’s fans must be gloating. But maybe I shouldn’t be so scroogy at folks rejoicing at Christmas time.

  3. Historian
    Posted December 27, 2018 at 9:37 am | Permalink

    Click this link to get the original Chicago Tribune headline that uses the word “nixes.” Google’s cache saved the article with the original headline. It works at least for the firefox browser. Almost every Google search has a little upside down triangle for each result. If you click that you will get the cached version that Google has saved.

    • Mikeyc
      Posted December 27, 2018 at 9:41 am | Permalink

      I get a 404 on the link. 😐

      • Diana MacPherson
        Posted December 27, 2018 at 9:47 am | Permalink

        Not to sound like every IT person, but it works on my computer. 🙂 I suspect it could be browser related?

      • Historian
        Posted December 27, 2018 at 10:14 am | Permalink

        Here’s what should work for you. In Google, type in “Chicago Tribune nixes.” Near the top of the search results, you should see “
        As national Women’s March leaders face claims of. ” Then click the upside down green triangle.

        • Diana MacPherson
          Posted December 27, 2018 at 10:17 am | Permalink

          I’m getting the 404 error when I do that now. Hmmmmm.

    • Posted December 27, 2018 at 10:21 am | Permalink

      I’ve added the original headline to my post; thanks to Historian!

  4. Malgorzata
    Posted December 27, 2018 at 9:44 am | Permalink


  5. Posted December 27, 2018 at 10:24 am | Permalink

    Apologies to all who saw this in an earlier comment in the Jerry Coyne combox! But …

    It’s worth considering that the “black antisemitism” deployed by the likes of Tamika Mallory and Carmen Perez is a sort of career strategy, a power move in the factional struggle for predominance and resources within the American progressive movement, to settle who owes what to whom. It’s a bludgeon to psychologically and ideologically stupefy, disarm and overwhelm the white and Jewish liberals of the Women’s March. Message: it is past time for Jews to join whites in the big tent of collective racial guilt and shame. You owe us too!” I blog about it in “Fox Force Five and the Great ‘Women’s March’ Heist: Antisemitism as Career Strategy,” here:

    • Diana MacPherson
      Posted December 27, 2018 at 10:25 am | Permalink

      I love the title “Fox Force Five” 🙂 Nice Pulp Fiction reference.

    • mikeyc
      Posted December 27, 2018 at 10:36 am | Permalink

      Excellent post – have to say, as I learn more about how the WM was formed, I’m less sad it’s dying. I agree with Diana though; the “Fox Force Five” angle is really good.

      • Posted December 27, 2018 at 11:03 am | Permalink

        Much appreciated Diana and Mikeyc! Yes, I also really enjoyed working up the Pulp Fiction angle!

    • Posted December 27, 2018 at 11:02 am | Permalink

      And since the new antisemitism is being sold in part on the claim that Jews had some special responsibility for the slave trade, could I be permitted to also repeat this earlier comment?

      As for the claim that Jews had some special role in the slave trade, the key point is that the African slave trade was a global partnership between the African elites who for centuries hunted, captured and exported tens of millions of their own countrymen, and the Middle Eastern, European and North and South American elites who bought them. The Islamic slave trade accounted for almost half the slaves exported out of Africa between 800 and 1900 CE. It would hardly be a surprise if some Jewish elites profited from the slave trade, alongside so many others. But to accuse Jews of some *special* historical guilt that was not shared by African kings and warlords, Arab sheikhs and white plantation owners is the very definition of antisemitism. For those interested in the history of African slavery from the African perspective, I review some of the literature in “My folks sell me and yo folks buy me – Kanye West, ‘Barracoon’ and some history of African slavery,” here:

  6. Jon Gallant
    Posted December 27, 2018 at 11:12 am | Permalink

    When the Women’s March Inc. and its various counterparts implodes in disorder, we can be sure that this misfortune will be blamed on the conspiracy of Zionists and lizard people.
    I have no doubt that when SDS disintegrated into a brawl between different factions of the Revolutionary Youth movement back in 1969, enthusiasts of that time blamed it on the machinations of outside provocateurs and evil lizard people. BTW, if a weathervane of pop-Left air currents is desired, watch which way Kirsten Gillebrand swings.

    • Nicolaas Stempels
      Posted December 27, 2018 at 12:44 pm | Permalink

      1969? Were we already aware of the evil lizard people? I thought that that paradigm changing discovery was a more recent phenomenon.
      (don’t tell anybody, but from midnight to one o clock you can see me in my true morph, a lizard)

      • DrBrydon
        Posted December 27, 2018 at 5:31 pm | Permalink

        Some people have always been aware of the lizard people, but no one would listen!

  7. BJ
    Posted December 27, 2018 at 11:47 am | Permalink

    “Given the prominence of the Women’s March in US politics — Democratic Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand of New York called the organization’s leadership “the suffragists of our time” in a blurb for Time magazine’s 100 Most Influential People of 2017.”

    I am so very shocked the Gillibrand would associate herself with such people and laud them.


    • BJ
      Posted December 27, 2018 at 11:49 am | Permalink

      I guess the real question is whether, if Gillibrand runs for President in 2020, will any of this or some of her other questionable divisive statements in the past hurt her? The rank antisemitism of Keith Ellison certainly hasn’t hurt him.

      “Antisemitism: the only choice for people who want an ethnic group to hate and blame, but still get away with it!” That’s what I imagine a tagline for antisemitism as a product would be, though I admit it’s a bit unwieldy. I’m not an ad executive.

      • BJ
        Posted December 27, 2018 at 11:54 am | Permalink

        Well, I guess you could also add misandry, and perhaps hatred of white people. But it’s a bit harder to get away with that when it comes to national elections, though the media might very well just not cover it.

        Gillibrand tweeted just a couple of weeks ago

        “Our future is:

        Powered by our belief in one another.

        And we’re just getting started.”

        The future is “female,” not equality between men and women? That doesn’t sound like equality. The future is “intersectional”? We all know what that means…

      • Diana MacPherson
        Posted December 27, 2018 at 12:27 pm | Permalink

        Anti-semitism: because it’s uncool to hate blacks or the Irish.

        • BJ
          Posted December 27, 2018 at 3:30 pm | Permalink

          Much more succinct and memorable! But it doesn’t quite get the message across that it’s OK to hate Jews (unless you’re on the Right, in which case it’s very likely to be reported by mainstream sources).

          Maybe we need to have a brainstorming session. Let’s all meet in the conference room at 4:00 and figure it out. Tom, bring the USB drive with the graphs. Kim, make sure you have all the files the graphics designers department provided.

          • Diana MacPherson
            Posted December 27, 2018 at 3:41 pm | Permalink

            Yes, let’s make an Ishikawa diagram of our thoughts!

            • BJ
              Posted December 27, 2018 at 11:23 pm | Permalink

              Never heard of that, so I looked it up. Quite confusing! Can we just stick to graphs, flow charts, and playing games of charades?

  8. Mark Sturtevant
    Posted December 27, 2018 at 11:55 am | Permalink

    I can allow that Sarsour, Mallory, and/or Perez may (may have “evolved” away from their position on Israel and their alignment with Farrakhan. That is possible, and this should be mentioned. Growth is possible…
    But they still need to just step down as leaders of the Women’s March™
    That would be doing the ‘right thing’.

  9. Claudia Baker
    Posted December 27, 2018 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

    Sarsour says:

    “…those of us who are Black and Brown…”

    Could she look any more white in the above picture? Such a bullshit artist.

    • Nicolaas Stempels
      Posted December 27, 2018 at 1:05 pm | Permalink

      Yes, as soon as I learned about the lily-white Ms Sarsour (you see, I get better, didn’t use the ‘despicable’ or ‘odious’ adjectives), it was clear she was a Saudi shill -or at least a fundamentalist Islamic one. Her defense, nay adulation, of the KSA -which in many ways is as bad as ISIS- all the red flags came out.
      And what I learn about Mallory and Perez is not much better.
      I think it would not have been difficult to find some ‘coloured leaders’ without these anti-semitic and SJW leanings. Alas, the Woman’s March is all but dead by playing in the hand of Mr Trump now. Can it be saved? I doubt it.

    • Posted December 28, 2018 at 9:53 pm | Permalink

      In a video, she said she was just an ordinary white girl until she put on a hijab.

      And her name does translate as “cockroach” according to her and she’s proud of that. A completely unimpressive human being.

  10. dd
    Posted December 27, 2018 at 3:53 pm | Permalink

    “These three women have lied on us,” Mallory said. “We want to have these conversations in public, not behind closed doors, but in public. So we challenge the three of” — at which point the video abruptly cuts off.

    Ok, regarding the above…Is Mallory implying that what Tablet reported regarding their anti-semitism is a lie?

    It will be interesting to see what politicians show up at which march. Stunning that it should come to this and does not bode well for future harmony among Democrats.

    The intersectional cart’s wheels may fly off.

  11. DrBrydon
    Posted December 27, 2018 at 5:38 pm | Permalink

    “These three women have lied on us. . . .” Is that an accepted construction? About us? Lied on an application? Laid on us? And what on Earth would it mean for my disagreement to be rooted in Sarsour’s, soi-disant, oppression?

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