Move over, Punxsutawney Phil! A yearly tradition more exciting (and predictable!) than Groundhog Day shadows just rang in the official start of the summer season: Alan Dershowitz talking to the media about how everyone on Martha’s Vineyard hates him.
It’s become a beloved annual holiday ever since Alan Dershowitz decided to throw himself behind the idea that “If a president does something which he believes will help him get elected in the public interest, that cannot be the kind of quid pro quo that results in impeachment.” In other words, Donald Trump using the power of his office to cut off Ukraine’s access to weaponry as an extortion tactic would be totally fine because Trump thought it might help him win. Oh, and when Dershowitz said that Jeffrey Epstein should’ve gotten even lighter punishment. And also when Dershowitz started helping the MyPillow guy claim that the January 6 committee violates religious freedom or something.
The point is, Dershowitz has done a lot over the last few years and exactly none of it ingratiated him to Martha’s Vineyard… or society in general. So now he whines to the media every summer.
“I have essentially been excluded from the Democratic Party,” Dershowitz told Newsmax. “There was recently an event on Martha’s Vineyard for Jewish Democrats – who would be the first person you would think of as a Jewish Democrat on Martha’s Vineyard – me, but I wasn’t invited because I’m now cancelled essentially from the Democratic Party.”
The FIRST person we’d think of, he says.
“The library won’t allow me to speak on Martha’s Vineyard, the Community Center, the major synagogue, all of them have canceled me because I had the chutzpah to defend the constitution on behalf of a president of the United States that they all voted against – the fact that I voted against him, too, and then I remain — in my mind a Liberal Democrat doesn’t much matter,” he complained. “If I don’t follow the party line down to the extreme, I am cancelled. People refuse to attend events if they know I’m gonna be there and that’s why several friends of mine have who have invited me for years to events in their home or concerts that they’ve sponsored have apologetically said, ‘We’re sorry we can’t invite you because if you come everybody will leave,’ he added.”
Oh my God! The town library won’t just reflexively give him a speaking engagement? On the heels of declaring himself the most recognizable Jewish Democrat on Martha’s Vineyard, the level of entitlement is staggering even if we’re grading on the Harvard Law School curve.
This is just like 2018 when he said, “I have experienced this firsthand on Martha’s Vineyard. Old friends are shunning me and trying to ban me from their social life.” Or last year when he said, “It’s typical of what happens now on the Vineyard…. People won’t talk to each other if they don’t agree with their politics,” when Larry David was tired of Dershowitz’s shit.
The most important party on Martha’s Vineyard is the pity party and Dershowitz is the guest of honor. What he’s calling “canceled” is normally called freedom of association. People don’t want to hang out with you because of the choices you’ve made — that’s on you, not on them.
To be clear, this is true even if Dershowitz is in the right. I don’t remember Gandhi grumbling that he wasn’t invited to British high society gatherings. People engaged in noble pursuits for justice don’t bellyache that they can’t go to all the best parties anymore. Part of being a person of principle is accepting that people won’t like you all the time.
Though, in fairness, people not liking you all the time is ALSO a symptom of royally screwing up on a public stage over and over again.
One or the other definitely applies here.
Joe Patrice is a senior editor at Above the Law and co-host of Thinking Like A Lawyer. Feel free to email any tips, questions, or comments. Follow him on Twitter if you’re interested in law, politics, and a healthy dose of college sports news. Joe also serves as a Managing Director at RPN Executive Search.