Who Is the Real Mike Pence?

Atlantic writer McKay Coppins recently published a nuanced account of Vice President Mike Pence’s rise to the second-highest office in the land.

On today’s show, he talked about the interviews he gathered for the article, which is headlined “God’s Plan for Mike Pence.” Coppins shared his theories about Pence’s presidential aspirations as well as what he knows about Karen Pence’s response to that infamous “Access Hollywood” tape.

“It is not a slam on religious people,” Glenn said of the article. “It’s just trying to understand Mike Pence and what drives him. How can he have two masters?”

This article provided courtesy of TheBlaze.

GLENN: So there was a -- there's a new book out, The Wilderness. Deep inside the Republican Party's combative, contentious, chaotic quest to take back the White House.

And out of that, the writer, McKay Coppins, has written an article, God's plan for Mike Pence. And if you just look through it, because it's from The Atlantic. The pictures, you know, make Mike Pence look like he's an apostle or whatever. But it is not a slam on religious people. It's just trying to understand Mike Pence and what drives him. How can he have two masters? How can he be the guy who we all think Mike Pence is? But then stomach as much as he has.

And it's a really fascinating look into Mike Pence and especially today, with the -- the president possibly, you know, claiming -- I'll believe it when I see it, but I think he's going to do it. Today, recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. So welcome to the program, McKay Coppins.

McKAY: Thanks for having me.

GLENN: You bet. So McKay, first, let's talk a little bit about Israel and Jerusalem. Does this surprise you?

McKAY: Well, it's something that he campaigned on, Trump did. And it's something that I know a lot of people in his orbit have been claiming was coming. But, you know, past presidential candidates have campaigned on this as well and then not followed through on it. It's one of those eternal promises that is made to conservative Christians and conservative Jews in this country, and then it never ends up happening.

I still would frankly be a little skeptical. I think I'll believe it when I see it stance is the right one. They've cautioned this takes a long time. Obviously to build an embassy would take a long time. But, you know, it certainly -- if it ends up happening, it's certainly a victory for a lot of the conservatives who voted for Trump on this.

GLENN: Well, is it a victory just to officially declare it's the capital from the White House?

McKAY: Sure. Yeah. That's more than has been done before.

GLENN: Right. I kind of look at it like the Bear Ears monument, that he can say whatever he wants and say, yeah, we declare. But until you've actually cemented it and there's just no turning back -- as soon as you move the embassy, then it's more than Donald Trump, then it is the United States is on that course.

McKAY: That's right. That's why I think we have to wait to see if the embassy actually gets built, or if actual, tangible plans get announced. And that -- you know, we just don't know yet.

GLENN: Okay. So let's talk a little bit about Mike Pence. Because I think this kind of fits into your -- the way you look at Mike Pence. And that is, he's there because he believes that God works in mysterious ways. And maybe he's just supposed to stand up at some point if the president falls down.

McKAY: Right. This is the thing that I found really interesting about Mike Pence, is that he is, by all accounts, in contrary to I think some liberal caricatures of him, a genuine man of faith. Religion is at the core of his identity and has been at least since college and probably even before that.

You know, he really is motivated by a desire to serve God. And he thinks that he can do that in the political realm. But, you know, it's also kind of tangled up in his personal ambitions as well.

So, you know, when Donald Trump came knocked last year, last spring, after securing the Republican nomination and, you know, said I want you to be my running mate, Mike Pence was kind of faced with the choice that millions of conservative Christians were faced with last year, which is, can we overlook the kind of -- you know, to put it politely, flaws in this man's character, right? Can we overlook this man's character, his values, his perhaps lack of morality. And still support him in pursuit of a broader, and they would say, more important policy agenda. Political agenda.

And Mike Pence made the decision that he could. And so did frankly an overwhelming number of conservative Christians. I think it's still an open question whether that compromise, whether that gamble will pay off, for Mike Pence and for the people who supported him. I mean, they did -- people who video for Trump just because of the policy victories that they want to obtain, they've gotten some things, right? They've gotten the Supreme Court justice, who is a conservative. Just today, like you said, the announcement about Jerusalem, that could be a big victory for them. But at the same time, every compromise has consequences. And Mike Pence finds himself in the middle of this kind of swirling investigation of over Russia. And, you know, while he is, by all accounts, trying to stay aboveboard, trying to keep his hands clean of all of this, when you cozy up to somebody like Trump, a lot of things can happen that you wouldn't expect. I think that's a fair way to put it.

GLENN: So would you say your impression -- because I just want to give you my impression. I don't want to quote any conversations. But I was around Mike Pence during the run-up, when it was still not clear that Donald Trump was still going to be the candidate.

STU: The Indiana primary, where pence had endorsed Cruz.

McKAY: Right. Right.

GLENN: My impression at the time, in speaking to Mike Pence, was that he knew exactly who Donald Trump was, and it wasn't a guy who he had a lot of faith in, to put it mildly.

McKAY: That is I think an accurate impression.

GLENN: All right.

McKAY: No, Mike Pence was not on the Trump train. Early -- remember when Trump announced the Muslim ban or the proposed Muslim ban in December of 2015, Pence came out in opposition to it. He said that this is an affront to American values or something like that. And he spoke out at other times during the primary.

My impression is that he was fairly clear about who Donald Trump was. In fact, after this story came out -- I haven't shared this yet, but after my profile was published yesterday, I got an email from somebody who was an Indiana delegate, or was slated to be a delegate at the Republican National Convention from Indiana.

And when Trump won the nomination, this person decided they couldn't show up to the convention. And said that, in the run-up to -- during the primary, kind of in the -- when it was still not clear whether Trump would win, this person got a lot of phone calls and emails from people in Pence's inner circle, like, oh, yeah, the governor agrees with you. This is not great. He shares your concerns. And then a few weeks later, was announced that he would be the running mate.

GLENN: So let me ask you about that. Because you -- in this interview, you spoke to his wife. You've done your homework here.

Do you believe that Pence did this for his -- as you said earlier, his political aspirations. Or did he do this because he thought, I may -- you know, it may be, you know, God's will that somebody is standing in that room, that doesn't necessarily agree with him. And I need to hold the line and be there.

McKAY: I actually think that's not -- those two aren't mutually exclusive. My impression from all the interviews I've done, all the people I've talked to close to him is that he got himself to a point, Pence did, where he believed that both, yes, you know, he had political aspirations. He's always believed -- he wanted to be president ever since he was in college. But also, he believed he could do some good there, right?

And, look, this is something that all people struggle with. I don't think that this is uniquely a problem that Mike Pence has faced. Everyone tries to reconcile their ambition with their ideals, right? Whether their religious ideals or whatever else. And I think he's convinced himself that being in the room next to Donald Trump, having the president's ear, is a way to -- to do good. To -- to promote an agenda that will help people, that will, you know, protect other Christians, that will push the ball forward on issues that he cares about. So I think that, you know, part of the reason he's been so loyal to Trump is because of that.

GLENN: Back in a second. Because I want to talk to McKay about his conversation with Mrs. Pence, who had some things that were quite frank in the article. When we come back.

GLENN: McKay Coppins, who has written a great story, God's plan for Mike Pence. In it, he tells a story of the Access Hollywood tape, and what Mike Pence's wife and said what happened behind the scenes. Can you just walk us through this, McKay?

McKAY: Yeah, sure. This is based on interviews with former campaign aides and people close to the Pences or were friends with the Pences. So first of all I should say that after Pence joined the ticket, Trump made an effort to kind of convince Pence that beneath all the made for TV bluster Trumpian bravado, he was actually a good guy with faith in God. Because he wanted Trump to feel comfortable on the ticket and feel like he was doing a good thing.

And, in fact, on the night of the vice presidential debate, Trump left a voice mail letting Pence know that he had just said a prayer for him, which is something that Pence found very moving and really loved.

So fast forward to the Access Hollywood tape coming out, and I'm told that this was a really jarring experience for -- for Mike Pence and, in particular, his wife. One campaign aide told me that Karen Pence was disgusted by the video. And the former campaign aide said that she finds him reprehensible. Just totally vile. That's the direct quote.

GLENN: Could have been quoting my wife.

McKAY: Now --

GLENN: And I think most women in the country at that moment.

McKAY: Yeah, probably a lot of women at that moment. Exactly.

So here's -- what's interesting though is that you remember kind of the 48 hours after that tape came out, it was just this moment of total upheaval in the campaign. Republicans were calling on Trump to jump out. There was all kinds of chaos. And I report in the story, in the midst of all that, Mike Pence made it clear to the Republican National Committee, that he was ready to take Trump's place as the nominee.

And, in fact, during an emergency meeting between Trump and his top advisers in the midst of all of this that weekend, Reince Priebus, who was then chairman of the RNC actually said that Pence and Condoleezza Rice were ready to step in to form the new G.O.P. ticket. Now, obviously -- that didn't end up happening.

GLENN: What happened? Bannon!

McKAY: Well, yeah, no. Actually, really, yeah, you're right. I'm told by one former campaign aide, they thought they were going to be able to convince Trump to drop out before the debate that was that Sunday night, that was that weekend.

Instead, Trump was defiant, which as he's often been. And he showed up. And he brought the Clinton accusers. You remember this.

GLENN: Yep. Yep.

McKAY: And by the end of that debate, kind of turned things around. And Republicans had stopped calling on him to drop out. And by the next day, Pence was back out on the stump. But the reason I think that story is important and the reason I put it in the piece is because it raises questions especially in Trump's orbit, the people I talk to about how long this loyalty will last from Pence. You know, is Pence really willing to go down with the ship, so to speak, and investigations continue.

GLENN: I find it, McKay, very interesting that now they're starting to say, did Mike Pence actually know more than he said about Russia?

McKAY: Hmm.

GLENN: And the idea -- I -- I think Mike Pence is really smart. And I believe you're right on the direction you're going here. And I think Mike is smart enough to see trouble and say, I'm staying way away from that, to remain clean.

McKAY: Right.

GLENN: To be able to be the guy that can rise up behind.

McKAY: Yeah, that's a good point. I don't know what's going to come out. You know, he was the head of the transition, when all this kind of trouble started, right? But I do think that there -- obviously, we'll see what happens and what information comes out. But I do think that, yeah, Pence -- above everything else, is, you know, careful. He's very cautious. Right?

GLENN: Yeah. Yeah.

McKAY: I think he -- even though he was head of the transition, I can easily see a scenario where he was operating on a kind of don't ask, don't tell policy.

GLENN: McKay Coppins. The article is God's plan for Mike Pence. More in a minute.

GLENN: Ben Shapiro is going to be joining us at the top of the hour. Ben is going to have a lot to say about what President Trump is supposed to or supposedly going to announce today, that the United States is recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. Strangely, that's a big deal. A very big deal.

And also, the -- it appears as though -- according to Think Progress, that the case for the people against the bakers in Colorado, did not go well for them yesterday in the Supreme Court. Kelly Shackelford has been there. He was watching the case. And he is going to talk to us. That's also next hour.

STU: We're talking to McKay Coppins from The Atlantic, who wrote the article, God's plan for Mike Pence. One of the reasons I like McKay, and McKay is with us now is he -- unlike many mainstream reporters, I get the sense he has -- gets -- has a much more nuanced understanding of people of faith.

GLENN: Yeah. McKay -- you were -- you were on the Romney bus for that -- that campaign, were you not?

McKAY: Yeah, I was. The only Mormon on the Romney bus as a reporter.

GLENN: And I don't know if the other people knew that or not. But you were -- you were constantly forced to endure religious and Mormon jokes from the other members of the press, is that right?

McKAY: That's true. Although, I wrote about this after the campaign. I didn't think it was necessarily malevolent, it was just kind of born out of ignorance for the most part. People made a lot of Mormon jokes, Mormon underwear jokes. But I will say, by the end of that campaign, I think Mormonism had been demystified for most of those reporters and they had come to respect it more.

GLENN: Yeah.

STU: That was one of the things I thought was interesting about your story about Pence is that I think to a lot of people who are conservative Christians and had a certain impression of Mike Pence, when the Trump stuff started happening, it surprised a lot of people. It seemed like it was against what he stood for and what his belief system was. He sort of explained that here with his idea of servant/leadership that he really has carried with him his entire life. Can you talk about that a little bit?

McKAY: Yeah, this is a Biblical concept. This was described to me by Mark Short, who serves as the White House director of legislative affairs, but has known Mike Pence for a long time.

And what he told me was that this idea of servant leadership is, you know, it's from the gospels, basically modeled off Jesus who, you know, washed his disciples feet and preached that you had to be humbled before you could be great.

And as early as Pence's first term as a congressman, he was instructing his staffers to have a servant's attitude when they dealt with constituents. That his idea was, we're the servants. And we're serving them. And we should be humble and try to help them as well as we can. And that attitude is kind of extended throughout his career. When he became part of the G.O.P. leadership in the House, he thought it was his job to be a servant to his fellow Republican congressman and congresswoman. And then when he decided to take the job as running mate, as Donald Trump's running mate, he believed his job was to be number two to Donald Trump. To serve Donald Trump. Now, a lot of people point to some of the -- some of the stuff that Pence does or says in defense of Trump, as how can -- how can a good Christian man possibly go out there and spend like this for Donald Trump?

But he doesn't see that as something that's out of step with his view of faith and Christianity. He think that he's meant to be a servant, he's under Trump's authority, and that's his job.

GLENN: So does that mean in his view that -- I mean, you know, we're all sevenths, yes. But when there's unrighteous leadership, I mean, you know, you go back to the Germans.

McKAY: Well, right.

GLENN: Is there a line? Not suggesting that that would be the line that he would ever approach. But is there a line?

Do you think he has a moral line with him where -- you know, for instance, the word is that Trump is now starting to deny that that Access Hollywood was even him.

McKAY: Yeah.

GLENN: I mean, I can't imagine coming home to my wife and if my wife said what she did say when that came out, and I defend him afterwards, she would have a hard time stomaching it, as I would. But then if he started to deny, I know my wife would go, really? Really? How much farther are you going to go?

McKAY: Right. Right. That is the question, right? This is why a lot of the people who have known Pence for a long time and who frankly have admired him for a long time, on both sides of the aisle, are kind of alarmed by how far Pence has been willing to go. Because they say, look, I get that you have a job here. I get that to a certain extent, you're going to have to spin and apologize and justify the president's action.

But there must be some line you won't cross, or else, you know, you can justify anything like that. But this is where I think it gets into the broader question of the rest of the conservative Christian community in this country, right?

I quoted -- or I cited a statistic from the Public Religion Research Institute, that found that in 2011, only 30 percent of white evangelicals agreed with this statement, that a public official could commit an act of immorality in his private life, but continued to serve ethically in his public life. So only 30 percent of white evangelicals believed that. Basically, they were saying character counts. It matters.

GLENN: Just for the record, I'm still saying that.

McKAY: Well, yeah. Well, and there are still many who say that. But by 2016, 72 percent of white evangelicals believe that. So now the majority of white evangelicals are saying, look, you know somebody can be a bad person in their private life, but still be a good public servant, a good public official. Now, you can debate that. But that is a sea change in evangelical. And, frankly, political ethics among a lot of conservative people of faith.

STU: You know, reading the piece, McKay, I really -- I wound up kind of liking Mike Pence more and understanding him, I think, a lot more, which was interesting. Though, we did not have time to get to the most damning thing in this article, which is when faced at his college -- when they come and they say, hey, do you guys have kegs? He sells out the fraternity and shows them where the kegs are. Is this accurate?

(laughter)

McKAY: This comes from one of his frat brothers, who, by the way, still likes Mike Pence. But, yeah, he said that the dean showed up and Pence led him straight to the kegs and, yeah, sort of sold his frat buddies out.

STU: I don't think we'll ever forgive him for that part of it. But other than that, it was a really interesting read. It's God's plan for Mike Pence from The Atlantic. And it's from McKay Coppins.

GLENN: McKay, thank you so much. Keep up the good work. God bless.

McKAY: Thanks, Glenn.

STU: You can follow McKay Coppins on Twitter @McKayCoppins. And we'll tweet out the article @GlennBeck and @worldofStu from The Atlantic.

Stop trying to be right and think of the children

Mario Tama/Getty Images

All the outrage this week has mainly focused on one thing: the evil Trump administration and its minions who delight in taking children from their illegal immigrant parents and throwing them all in dungeons. Separate dungeons, mind you.

That makes for a nice, easy storyline, but the reality is less convenient. Most Americans seem to agree that separating children from their parents — even if their parents entered the US illegally — is a bad thing. But what if that mom and dad you're trying to keep the kids with aren't really the kids' parents? Believe it or not, fraud happens.

RELATED: Where were Rachel Maddow's tears for immigrant children in 2014?

While there are plenty of heartbreaking stories of parents simply seeking a chance for a better life for their children in the US, there are also corrupt, abusive human traffickers who profit from the illegal immigration trade. And sorting all of this out is no easy task.

This week, the Department of Homeland Security said that since October 2017, more than 300 children have arrived at the border with adults claiming to be their parents who turned out not to be relatives. 90 of these fraud cases came from the Rio Grande Valley sector alone.

In 2017, DHS reported 46 causes of fraudulent family claims. But there have already been 191 fraud cases in 2018.

Shouldn't we be concerned about any child that is smuggled by a human trafficker?

When Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen pointed out this 315 percent increase, the New York Times was quick to give these family fraud cases "context" by noting they make up less than one percent of the total number of illegal immigrant families apprehended at the southern border. Their implication was that Nielsen was exaggerating the numbers. Even if the number of fraud cases at the border was only 0.001 percent, shouldn't we be concerned about any child that is smuggled by a human trafficker?

This is the most infuriating part of this whole conversation this week (if you can call it a "conversation") — that both sides have an angle to defend. And while everyone's busy yelling and making their case, children are being abused.

What if we just tried, for two seconds, to love having mercy more than we love having to be right all the time?

Remember when cartoons were happy things? Each panel took you on a tiny journey, carrying you to an unexplored place. In Understanding Comics, Scott McCloud writes:

The comics creator asks us to join in a silent dance of the seen and the unseen. The visible and the invisible. This dance is unique to comics. No other artform gives so much to its audience while asking so much from them as well. This is why I think it's a mistake to see comics as a mere hybrid of the graphic arts and prose fiction. What happens between . . . panels is a kind of magic only comics can create.

When that magic is manipulated or politicized, it often devolves the artform into a baseless thing. Yesterday, Occupy Wall Street published the perfect example of low-brow deviation of the artform: A six-panel approach at satire, which imitates the instructions-panel found in the netted cubbyhole behind seats on airplanes. The cartoon is a critique of the recent news about immigrant children being separated from their parents after crossing the border. It is a step-by-step guide to murdering US Immigrations and Customs Enforcement agents.

RELATED: Cultural appropriation has jumped the shark, and everyone is noticing

The first panel shows a man shoving an infant into a cage meant for Pomeranians. The following five panels feature instructions, and include pictures of a cartoonish murder.

The panels read as follows:

  1. If an ICE agent tries to take your child at the border, don't panic.
  2. Pull your child away as quickly as possibly by force.
  3. Gently tell your child to close his/her eyes and ears so they won't witness what you are about to do.
  4. Grab the ICE agent from behind and push your knife into his chest with an upward thrust, causing the agent's sternum to break.
  5. Reach into his chest and pull out his still beating heart.
  6. Hold his bloody heart out for all other agents to see, and tell them that the same fate awaits them if they f--- with your child again.

Violent comics are nothing new. But most of the time, they remain in the realms of invented worlds — in other words, not in our own, with reference to actual people, let alone federal agents.

The mainstream media made a game of crying racism with every cartoon depiction of Obama during his presidency, as well as during his tenure as Senator, when the New Yorker, of all things, faced scrutiny for depicting him in "Muslim clothing." Life was a minefield for political cartoonists during the Obama era.

Chris Hondros/Getty Images

This year, we saw the leftist outrage regarding The Simpsons character Apu — a cartoon representation of a highly-respected, though cartoonishly-depicted, character on a cartoon show composed of cartoonishly-depicted characters.

We all remember Charlie Hebdo, which, like many outlets that have used cartoon satire to criticize Islam, faced the wrath and ire of people unable to see even the tamest representation of the prophet, Muhammad.

Interesting, isn't it? Occupy Wall Street publishes a cartoon that advocates murdering federal agents, and critics are told to lighten up. Meanwhile, the merest depiction of Muhammad has resulted in riots throughout the world, murder and terror on an unprecedented scale.

The intersection of Islam and comics is complex enough to have its own three-hour show, so we'll leave it at that, for now. Although, it is worth mentioning the commentary by satirical website The Onion, which featured a highly offensive cartoon of all the major religious figures except Muhammad. It noted:

Following the publication of the image above, in which the most cherished figures from multiple religious faiths were depicted engaging in a lascivious sex act of considerable depravity, no one was murdered, beaten, or had their lives threatened.

Of course, Occupy Wall Street is free to publish any cartoon they like. Freedom of speech, and so on—although there have been several instances in which violent cartoons were ruled to have violated the "yelling fire in a crowded theater" limitation of the First Amendment.

Posting it to Twitter is another issue — this is surely in violation of Twitter's violent content policy, but something tells me nothing will come of it. It's a funny world, isn't it? A screenshot of a receipt from Chick-fil-A causes outrage but a cartoon advocating murder gets crickets.

RELATED: Twitter mob goes ballistic over Father's Day photo of Caitlyn Jenner. Who cares?

In Understanding Comics, Scott McCloud concludes that, "Today the possibilities for comics are — as they've always been — endless. Comics offers . . . range and versatility, with all the potential imagery of film and painting plus the intimacy of the written word. And all that's needed is the desire to be heard, the will to learn, and the ability to see."

Smile, and keep moving forward.

Crude and awful as the Occupy Wall Street comic is, the best thing we can do is nod and look elsewhere for the art that will open our eyes. Let the lunatics draw what they want, let them stew in their own flawed double standards. Otherwise, we're as shallow and empty as they are, and nothing good comes of that. Smile, and keep moving forward.

Things are getting better. Show the world how to hear, how to learn, how to see.

People should start listening to Nikki Haley

ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS/AFP/Getty Images

Okay. Let's take a vote. You know, an objective, quantifiable count. How many resolutions has the UN Human Rights Council adopted condemning dictatorships? Easy. Well. How do you define "dictatorship"?

Well, one metric is the UN Human Rights Council Condemnation. How many have the United Nations issued to China, with a body count higher than a professional Call of Duty player?

Zero.

How about Venezuela, where socialism is devouring its own in the cruelest, most unsettling ways imaginable?

Zero.

And Russia, home of unsettling cruelty and rampant censorship, murder and (actual) homophobia?

Zero.

Iraq? Zero. Turkey? Iraq? Zero. Cuba? Zero. Pakistan? Zero.

RELATED: Nikki Haley just dropped some serious verbal bombs on Russia at the UN

According to UN Human Rights Council Condemnations, 2006-2016, none of these nations is as dangerous as we'd imagined. Or, rather, none of them faced a single condemnation. Meanwhile, one country in particular has faced unbelievable scrutiny and fury — you'll never guess which country.

No, it's not Somalia. It's Israel. With 68 UN Human Rights Council Condemnations! In fact, the number of total United Nations condemnations against Israel outnumbers the total of condemnations against all other countries combined. The only country that comes close is Syria, with 15.

The Trump administration withdrew from the United Nations Human Rights Council on Tuesday in protest of what it perceives as an entrenched bias against Israel and a willingness to allow notorious human rights abusers as members.

In an address to the UN Security Council on Tuesday, Nikki Haley said:

Let's remember that the Hamas terrorist organization has been inciting violence for years, long before the United States decided to move our embassy. This is what is endangering the people of Gaza. Make no mistake, Hamas is pleased with the results from yesterday... No country in this chamber would act with more restraint than Israel has.

Maybe people should start listening to Haley. Hopefully, they will. Not likely, but there's no crime in remaining hopeful.

Here's a question unique to our times: "Should I tell my father 'Happy Father's Day,' even though he (she?) is now one of my mothers?"

Father's Day was four days ago, yes, but this story is just weird enough to report on. One enjoyable line to read was this gem from Hollywood Gossip: "Cait is a woman and a transgender icon, but she is also and will always be the father of her six children."

RELATED: If Bruce was never a he and always a she, who won the men's Olympic gold in 1976?

Imagine reading that to someone ten — even five — years ago. And, honestly, there's something nice about it. But the strangeness of its having ever been written overpowers any emotional impact it might bring.

"So lucky to have you," wrote Kylie Jenner, in the Instagram caption under pre-transition pictures of Bruce Jenner.

Look. I risk sounding like a tabloid by mere dint of having even mentioned this story, but the important element is the cultural sway that's occurring. The original story was that a band of disgruntled Twitter users got outraged about the supposed "transphobic" remarks by Jenner's daughter.

But, what we should be saying is, "who the hell cares?" Who cares what one Jenner says to another — and more importantly and on a far deeper level — who cares what some anonymous Twitter user has to say?

When are we going to stop playing into the hands of the Twitter mob?

When are we going to stop playing into the hands of the Twitter mob? Because, at the moment, they've got it pretty good. They have a nifty relationship with the mainstream media: One or two Twitter users get outraged by any given thing — in this case Jenner and supposed transphobia. In return, the mainstream media use the Twitter comment as a source.

Then, a larger Twitter audience points to the article itself as proof that there's some kind of systemic justice at play. It's a closed-market currency, where the negative feedback loop of proof and evidence is composed of faulty accusations. Isn't it a hell of a time to be alive?