Our nation’s capital is a cesspool of petty influence, comical corruption and pure dysfunction. Some days, it’s fair to wonder if it is beyond saving. However, sometimes news comes along that gives you hope that it will not follow in Rome’s footsteps, and my friends, today is one of those days. Per Politico:
So, what’s a young Trumpie to do? Many still do live in D.C., and to understand what their lives here are like, we interviewed more than 30 millennial staffers from the Trump White House and across the administration, both current and former (many have already left), as well as a smattering of their friends and outside observers. Nearly all spoke on the condition of anonymity, to talk candidly about their personal lives or because they were not authorized by their bosses to comment. They told us their horror stories about being heckled on the street and their struggles to get a date. Unlike their predecessors, who made their mark on the city’s social scene, they largely keep to themselves, more likely to hop between intimate apartment gatherings than to hit the town. “Instead of folks looking outward,” explains one young White House aide, “more folks look inward.”
This report is filled to the brim with wondrous anecdotes of Trump staffers shunned by their peers, and based on the latest results out of the Pew poll (and the general manspreading to the furthest corners of the Trump administration), I’d be willing to bet good money that the vast majority of the 30 staffers whom Politico spoke to are men.
There is only one subset of American society who we can say truly “gets it,” and my fellow millennial men, I am here to tell you that is not us.
Millennial women are going to destroy the Republican Party. Given the pure math behind the fact that we are the largest generation ever, and that many of the GOP's core supporters will be dying over the next 20-plus years, it's a question of when this iteration of the GOP recedes into the dustbin of history, not if. Plus, it's already begun. There is a flood of (liberal) women of all ages running for political office right now. And they're winning.
So when reading this incredibly satisfying report about how a bunch of Trump bro's (and some bro-ettes) are, uh, unsatisfied, keep in mind that the above charts are the subtext to their sexual frustration. #MeToo is a moment that not coincidentally arose with Trump's election, and women have universally declared that they are fed up with our shit. Now they're taking the initiative to change the way that things work around here. If there is any solace that we can take from this waking nightmare that is the Trump administration, it's that us millennials whose brains are broken/for sale to the highest bidder are the first 21st century presidential administration to be reduced to the cultural edges of our capital city.
Faced with open antagonism, Trump's millennials over the past year and a half have quietly settled on the margins: a stretch of Washington that spans from the Wharf—a shiny new development three blocks south of the National Mall—southeast along the Waterfront and into Navy Yard, on the banks of the Anacostia River. It's a string of neighborhoods that peer out over the water, separated from most of the city by an interstate, and facing away from official Washington. It's a bubble within the Washington bubble: Here, young Trump staffers mix largely with each other and enjoy the view from their rooftop pools, where they can feel far away from the District's locals and the rest of its political class.
Now, to be fair to the millennial Trumpists, part of their ostracization is due to the fascism that they have openly signed up for, as journalist John Arundel told Politico.
“There seems to be a lot of paranoia among people inside the White House that if they step out of line, that they will get their heads chopped off by the president’s Twitter feed,” says John Arundel, a magazine journalist and close observer of the Washington scene who says he has known Trump for 30 years. “They don’t want to be seen as acting inappropriately or being seen out with the wrong person. They feel like they’re targets.”
Trump received four percent of the vote in Washington D.C. In 2014, 28% of people told Public Policy Polling that they viewed gonorrhea more favorably than Congress. It’s not a stretch to suggest that Trump staffers are less popular in our nation’s capital than some curable sexually transmitted diseases. At least you know for certain that you can rid those viruses from your life. Hell, as this passage proves, being associated with the folks who underwrote the greatest crisis of millennials lives is seen as more appealing than being part of the Trumpstapo.
Sometimes, the easiest option is to hide their identities. While under normal circumstances, you could expect young White House officials to work their job titles into conversations at the earliest opportunity, the Trump crew has learned to use the types of dodges more commonly deployed by employees of the CIA. “I’ll just say I work for the federal government,” says a White House aide. After some conversations at bars on U Street and the Hill turned south when his Trump ties came up, one since-departed staffer has learned to reveal his White House past only as a last resort. “Even now, people have to ask five or six times before I say, ‘Yeah, I worked there,’” he says. When being vague doesn’t cut it, staffers can always straight-up lie, as one young administration official learned to do while working out of New York during the campaign. “I told people I was an auditor down on Wall Street, and people just stopped asking me questions after that,” he recalls.
If this all feels mean-spirited to you, then consider what Trump administration millennials (like Stephen Miller) are not just supporting, but working towards every single day. We’re building child concentration camps and baby prisons for children we ripped away from their parents (and putting some in shelters with a history of rape and neglect). In a sane world, sexual frustration would be the least of these people’s concerns.
Jacob Weindling is a staff writer for Paste politics. Follow him on Twitter at @Jakeweindling.