The White House Is Mad at a Red Hen

The very nicely painted and canopied Red Hen restaurant in Lexington, Virginia.

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Last Friday, the owner of the Red Hen restaurant in Lexington, Virginia, quietly asked Sarah Huckabee Sanders and her party to leave because her staff was uncomfortable serving a member of the Trump administration. The next morning one of the servers wrote about it on his Facebook page and Sanders confirmed what had happened. The rest of the weekend was then consumed with a firestorm over civility and blah blah blah. Today our commander-in-chief weighed in:

Charming, as always. But there’s method to the madness: Trump wants to make sure that anyone who criticizes him—directly or indirectly—pays a big price. If that means bringing the hammer of the presidency of the United States down on some poor schmoe in Lexington, Virginia, that’s fine. It sends a message to others that tangling with him just isn’t worth it. This has already worked pretty well within the business community, which appears to have been entirely cowed by Trump already.

This is how people like Trump operate: they shut down criticism by making it too personally costly to engage in. He knows perfectly well what a presidential tweet is likely to produce, and that’s all part of the plan. Eventually, he hopes, everyone will be cowed.

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Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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