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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THE TRUTH...

is the first thing despots go after. An unwavering commitment to it is probably what draws you to Mother Jones' journalism. And as we're seeing in the US and the world around, authoritarians seek to poison the discourse and the way we relate to each other because they can't stand people coming together around a shared sense of the truth—it's a huge threat to them.

Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

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