Thinking back, I just realized I mischaracterized the article I led off talking about. The premise I described was really the hook in the provocative headline; the article itself was more of a blanket defense of her prosecutorial record (though it did mix a few different elements of response). It wasn’t saying on principle that she should be above criticism, but that there was nothing to criticize. I didn’t find it convincing; that’s not how I see the criminal justice system and that candidate’s specific record. But to be fair, the article itself was bad in different ways than you’d get from my summary, or from the headline. I had so much disdain for the content itself that I didn’t think it was worth addressing. People have written better things on both the problems of the criminal justice and on the difficulties faced by people who do try to work from the inside, the pressures faced around race and gender, and the problems of purity. There’s really nothing new or interesting in the article; it’s just provocative framing.
What was interesting to me was the feelings this piece brought back, the utter waste of time it brought out in me, and how to talk myself down from the types of self-sabotaging engagement I’d been prone to. I’m still struggling with it. I still waste a lot of time reacting to my reacting, especially when I’m tired or distracted, and between that and other struggles in life, my direct activism and focused analysis have been suffering. That sucks. I need to get back on it, and I thank all of you who have been doing more substantial work. Harris is among the many candidates who are doing good and interesting things and I look forward to their contributions to the effort to produce a good candidate.