What Shall I Do With This Little Peashooter?

by William Skink

I’d like to thank Democrat supporter and RD troll, larry kurtz, for bringing me back to the topic of political emasculation when he made this comment:

Thank you, liz, for another shot at the Clinton battleship with your peashooter. Rock on, doods.

I initially stumbled into this arena of political discourse through Don Pogreba’s obsession with Ryan Zinke’s hyper-masculine political brand. But that was before Marco’s little hands. Now we have on full display the GOP’s version of the politics of emasculation:

In his book, Jackson Katz writes, “Presidential politics are the site of an ongoing cultural struggle over the meaning of American manhood.” For over two centuries, presidential candidates have worked to meet masculine credentials of the job, proving they are tough, strong, and “manly men.” More importantly, they have worked to emasculate their opponents, characterizing them as too weak, infantile, or feminine to be Commander-in-Chief. This politics of emasculation is on full display in the current GOP primary, where the top contenders are engaged in fights over who is man enough to be president.

In just the past three days, Donald Trump and Marco Rubio have worked to paint each other as “girly men,” whether in traits, behavior, or appearance. A quick review of Donald Trump’s Twitter timeline in the past 72 hours reveals at least ten references to Rubio as “little” or “lightweight.” While Trump’s rhetoric implies that he is the “heavyweight” in the boxing match currently taking place in the Republican primary, Rubio countered on Friday that Trump has “never punched anyone in the face,” adding, “Donald Trump is the first guy who begged for Secret Service protection, the first guy.” Rubio’s rebuttal buys into the politics of manhood and emasculation, suggesting that seeking Secret Service protection is a sign of weakness; tough guys don’t need protection, Rubio implies, especially if they throw the first punch.

In both kurtz’s comment and Pogreba’s copious Zinke postings, the stereotype of masculine strength (and its opposite, feminine weakness) is validated through their efforts to tarnish their political opponents. What they are missing in their ends-justify-the-means political calculation is the evolving dynamic of what it means to “Be A Man” in the 21st century.

The political exploitation of gender roles is going to be an ongoing topic of inquiry here for the duration of this political cycle. I just hope my little peashooter is up to the challenge.

About Travis Mateer

I'm an artist and citizen journalist living and writing in Montana. You can contact me here: willskink at yahoo dot com
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11 Responses to What Shall I Do With This Little Peashooter?

  1. Greg Strandberg says:

    I got a phone call from a state far, far to the east of us yesterday. Someone had seen a tweet mentioning me and called me about Larry Kurtz. They told me he’d burned all bridges in South Dakota and elsewhere with fellow Democrats. Many Democrats had actually left the party, so turned off were they at the idea of being a Democrat from the antics that man showed. I got a sense from the caller that it’s best to ignore this person, not have any contact with them.

    That, coupled with another day on Twitter’s #mtpol of Kurtz putting up tweet after tweet about things I don’t really care about, and in a way that I don’t care to see, and I decided to block him. Perhaps that’ll get me a lot of negative tweets directed my way, maybe even some negative blog comments. That’s fine.

    • larry kurtz says:


      • Matthew Koehler says:



        Hate speech web site author now wants to be “temperate” voice of the SDDP.

        Posted on November 23, 2014 by @SoDakCampaigns

        Sometimes you think you’ve heard it all, and then something even goofier comes along.

        Larry Kurtz, who has trolled the SD Blogosphere for many months, has been long banned from commenting here for utterly offensive postings, including the sexual and scatological, as well as being a constant voice of anti-catholic hate speech and bigotry. Even the Madville Minnesota Times banned him for his antics for a time, and I’ve heard that South Dakota Magazine has had to delete him as well.

        Today, Kurtz announced in an odd third-personish way that he now wants to be the voice of a new Democratic party:

        While the author of interested party is a staunch Democrat and has been 100% correct on how to run a credible political campaign ip is far too radical to represent South Dakota Democrats in the party’s present deflated context.

        The Dakota Progressive intends to be a temperate but unwavering voice and will be a SDDP affiliated forum after it can raise enough money to compete with the SDGOP blog, Dakota War College.

        Read that craziness here.

        If you go to this ‘new’ website, all the content is authored by Kurtz. So, writing under a pseudonym, according to Kurtz all his hate speech and bigotry is “100% correct,” but writing under his own name at his new web site, he wants to be the “temperate but unwavering voice” of South Dakota Democrats. (Aside from the fact that I believe he lives in New Mexico.)

        If Democrats have any sense, they won’t just avoid this new self-proclaimed voice. They’ll run away.

  2. larry kurtz says:

    thanks for spelling my name correctly Skink or whatever you are.

  3. steve kelly says:

    All this keeps minds off the real issues of the day: Perpetual (economic and military) war against sovereign nations, including our own. “If none calls this foreign policy debacle “imperialism,” elections will be a sleepwalker’s exercise. Nothing will change. Except, almost certainly, for the worse.” – Luciana Bohne http://www.counterpunch.org/2016/05/13/the-great-leap-backward-americas-illegal-wars-on-the-world/

  4. larry kurtz says:

    The Dakota Water Closet is a christianic GOP-sponsored homophobic white supremacist hate site and Matt Koehler is a hypocrite.

    • larry kurtz says:

      Also, the South Dakota Democratic Party is dead with no hope for resurrection, but MTDEMS are an energetic, vibrant party with national power. I own 2445 acres in three states, some in Carter County, Montana and am a Democratic Party donor. You guys are pathetic malcontents with little hands and even less hope.

      • JC says:

        Spoken like a true Trumpian. It’s because the democratic party is full of rich, out-of-touch white men like you that a whole generation of young voters want nothing to do with it.

        You speak for a dying party Kurtz.

      • I am very impressed with the size of your…land holdings, but as you bash Christians, just remember, apples don’t fall far from trees.

      • Greg Strandberg says:

        So you own land in Montana. That’s great. What is your plan for becoming a viable, contributing member of the Carter County (or wherever) Democratic Party in Montana?

        Will they accept you? After all, you often say things that many will take as negative. From my own experience, that doesn’t work that well. Remember, the Montana Democratic Party calls me an anti-semitic Republican and refuses to even answer my phone calls or emails.

        That’s when I live here and write about political issues each day and have run for office in the state twice, donated to local candidates, and knocked on doors in November when I’m not running.

        I’ve done that but I’m still not accepted by the Montana Democratic Party nor will I be anytime soon.

        Why will the door be wide open for you?

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