The Other McCain

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In Which @BrittMcHenry Destroys Her Career ‘In the News, Sweetheart’

Posted on | April 17, 2015 | 92 Comments

A bad case of “Don’t You Know Who I Am?” Syndrome:

ESPN reporter Britt McHenry has been suspended for a week after video surfaced of her berating a parking lot attendant and telling the attendant to “lose some weight, baby girl,” The New York Post reported Thursday.
Washington-based McHenry was angry about having her car towed on April 6, The Post reports, and began dressing down the attendant despite being told the incident was being captured on security camera.
“I’m in the news, sweetheart, I will (expletive) sue this place,” McHenry said in the video published online by LiveLeak.
“Yep, that’s all you care about, is just taking people’s money,” McHenry said. “With no education, no skillset, just wanted to clarify that. … Do you feel good about your job? So I could be a college dropout and do the same thing? Why, cause I have a brain and you don’t?”
As she walks out of the lot, she tells the attendant to “lose some weight, baby girl.”

More at Fox News and the New York Post.

She posted an online apology, which probably won’t be enough to retrieve her from permanent infamy. Does she really believe that her career at ESPN is because “I have a brain and you don’t?”

She’s from the New Jersey suburbs of Philadelphia and attended Stetson University (annual tuition $40,040). She graduated with high honors and attended Northwestern University grad school. So, yes, she’s obviously smart, but does she think the parking lot attendant had those advantages and opportunities? Does Britt McHenry think her looks had nothing at all to do with her getting hired at ESPN?

Look, I’m not an egalitarian. Quite the opposite. To quote John Randolph of Roanoke, “I am an aristocrat. I love liberty; I hate equality.” Yet the true aristocrat does not behave the way Britt McHenry behaved. Certainly, no lady acts the way she acted. Anyone can lose their temper and say regrettable things — certainly I have — but no true aristocrat would treat working people that way. No true aristocrat would flaunt their privilege by attempting to personally humiliate someone for doing their job.

Raised with the values of the Poor But Proud yeomanry, I have a dim view of the Elite University set, the beneficiaries of fortune who assume they are naturally superior to any Ordinary American. And the very worst such creatures are the Daddy’s Precious Darling types, the snooty rich girls who consider their mere existence to be an achievement. If you’ve ever encountered Daddy’s Precious Darling, you know what I’m talking about. Two of my favorite songs — “Like a Rolling Stone” by Bob Dylan and “Rich Girl” by Hall and Oates — are about this type of female. In the Dylan song, he describes an upper-class girl who has fallen on hard times:

Once upon a time you dressed so fine,
You threw the bums a dime in your prime, didn’t you?
People’d call, say, “Beware doll, you’re bound to fall.”
You thought they were all kiddin’ you.
You used to laugh about
Everybody that was hangin’ out.
Now you don’t talk so loud.
Now you don’t seem so proud,
About having to be scrounging for your next meal.

The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away, and the children of fortune ought to exhibit gracious humility as a becoming expression of gratitude for God’s blessings. Yet so often, they’re the “Rich Girl”:

High and dry, out of the rain.
It’s so easy to hurt others when you can’t feel pain.

This was exactly Britt McHenry’s attitude toward that parking lot attendant. Young, privileged and pretty, an up-and-coming media personality, mocking an obscure working woman as having “no education, no skillset” and boasting “I’m in the news, sweetheart.”

Surely by now some feminist has interpreted the online rage against Britt McHenry as “misogyny,” but that misses the obvious point: Everybody knows her type, and everybody hates her type. A good-looking girl gets all the breaks, especially if she’s a rich good-looking girl, and our universal contempt for the spoiled-rotten Suburban Princess isn’t because we’re sexists, but because everybody who’s ever had to deal with one of those high-maintenance brats knows what vicious, selfish sadists they can be.

The kind of hideous cruelty displayed by Britt McHenry is an unfortunately common consequence of Special Snowflake™ Syndrome. We may contrast Britt McHenry to Justine Sacco of #HasJustineLandedYet infamy. Nobody had ever heard of Justine Sacco. She wasn’t a TV star, but BOOM:

“I cried out my body weight in the first 24 hours,” she told me. “It was incredibly traumatic. You don’t sleep. You wake up in the middle of the night forgetting where you are.”

That’s where Britt McHenry is now. We have to wonder if public disgrace will teach her a lesson, or if other Rich Girls will study that lesson.



92 Responses to “In Which @BrittMcHenry Destroys Her Career ‘In the News, Sweetheart’”

  1. Daniel Freeman
    April 17th, 2015 @ 12:23 pm

    It’s expensive to be poor. You can say it was her own fault, but if we’re practical, relieving those kinds of indignities would reduce support for the left.

  2. RS
    April 17th, 2015 @ 12:31 pm

    Illegal parking is considered a trespass–an infraction similar to a parking ticket. The business owner calls the police, who ticket the vehicle and have it towed.

  3. K-Bob
    April 17th, 2015 @ 12:33 pm


  4. RS
    April 17th, 2015 @ 12:34 pm

    I must thank God, I live where I live. In my area, your vehicle would have been held by police and the towing tab would have been picked up by the county. I do realize that towing companies are particularly susceptible to graft-inclined politicians. That’s why we have the laws regarding towing of vehicles that we have.

  5. K-Bob
    April 17th, 2015 @ 12:36 pm

    The places I’m familiar with, tow companies troll private lots looking for people parking there without permission or a sticker or whatever. They contract with the lots to keep an eye out, and can tow anytime the see someone’s car that they think isn’t supposed to be there.

  6. ConstantineX1
    April 17th, 2015 @ 12:37 pm

    She’s 28. Blondes that look like that and can read a teleprompter are a dime a dozen. That’s why very few women last long in that role, because most lack anything but Barbie doll looks and are nothing but sideline eye candy. They are professional cheerleaders basically. Her career will be over by age 35 or when she gets pregnant, whichever comes first.

  7. K-Bob
    April 17th, 2015 @ 12:41 pm

    Hey, I understand the anger at the tow company, but I’ve always gotten the best outcomes when dealing with the officious and bureaucratic by effecting an aura of, “can you please help me?” without sounding at all helpless. I just go with honesty: “I don’t understand how this works, can you help me?”

    Considering how much it must suck to work at the Social Security office or the Secretary of State office, or a towing company, or a free clinic, I make sure not to abuse the help. If I have a problem, I escalate without making the help the reason: it’s the policy or the management who made them do whatever is bothering me. (Even if it’s really the help’s incompetence.)

    I usually get very good results, and I don’t get the “special” treatment they reserve for rude, frequent flyers.

  8. Evi L. Bloggerlady
    April 17th, 2015 @ 12:53 pm

    Rule 5 posted (I am here to serve)

  9. DeadMessenger
    April 17th, 2015 @ 12:56 pm

    More likely between those willing to game and cheat the election process, and those who are not. Coincidentally, these two groups fall neatly into your categories, above. I’ll leave it to the reader to decide which is which.

  10. DeadMessenger
    April 17th, 2015 @ 1:00 pm

    Did she park in a handicapped spot? Being in a wheelchair myself, I’m sensitive to this, because more often than not, I watch someone park in the handicap spot, then sprint for the door.

    If she did park in the handicap spot, I’m glad they towed her, and hope she learned a lesson.

  11. DeadMessenger
    April 17th, 2015 @ 1:02 pm

    I was just going to say, McHenry said the things that Hillary would like to say publicly, but doesn’t dare to (until after she lies and cheats her way into office in 2016).

  12. DeadMessenger
    April 17th, 2015 @ 1:03 pm

    You are one devious heifer…

  13. DeadMessenger
    April 17th, 2015 @ 1:12 pm

    But she’s bleached and emaciated.

    Which is why, had I been the victim, when she got to “lose some weight, baby girl”, I’d have whipped out on an Italian sub dripping oil and vinegar, and made a big point of expressing my sensual enjoyment of it with lots of mmmmm’s and “it’s delicious” and “I think I’ll get extra cheese next time”.

    Or done the same with a Snickers bar, because Britt’s probably living mostly on Diet Coke and cigarettes.

  14. Kirby McCain
    April 17th, 2015 @ 1:18 pm

    Media personality is a oxymoron. Britt is just a moron.

  15. Alec Leamas
    April 17th, 2015 @ 1:28 pm

    I’m going to raise a reserved objection that not all of the facts are in here and propose a contrarian point of view. It has been my experience that these towing companies can be predatory and in an unholy alliance with big political mahoffs – someone’s brother in law, campaign donor, etc. They basically run a protection racket that is legitimized by their political relationships so long as they kick a little sugar up the chain of command. They commit the functional equivalent of grand theft auto and then charge outrageous towing and storage fees, all the while damaging one’s car for good measure.

    If McHenry was the victim of one of these rackets, I can’t fault her response although it wasn’t entirely impressive in terms of levying insults – more work need be done on that front by her.

  16. Quartermaster
    April 17th, 2015 @ 1:29 pm

    BUT, that’s the right way, not to mention the best way to get one’s pound of flesh. They will feel it far longer too.

  17. Quartermaster
    April 17th, 2015 @ 1:30 pm

    Hopefully you just jinxed her.

  18. Art Deco
    April 17th, 2015 @ 2:37 pm

    I understand the woman has problematic interiors and responded with excess emotion.

    Read the Yelp! reviews. Unless there’s a giant hoax perpetrated by their competitors, these people are running something one step up from a protection racket. It appears what they do is have their employees stake out lots with obscured signage and then pounce and tow people who miss the signs or are only there quite briefly. Some of these complaints concerned cars which were left unattended (in private lots, not in front of driveways or fire hydrants) for as little as three minutes. There are descriptions in these complaints concerning the behavior of an employee who sure sounds a great deal like the woman chastised by this sports reporter. She’s hired to put people off.

    If the Yelp! reviews are accurate, this is not an enterprise that can or should be dealt with with sweet reason. It’s a racket, and someone needs to explore legal options and go ’round to their clients.

  19. Art Deco
    April 17th, 2015 @ 2:39 pm

    I’m not sure that’s true generally, and political connections are not relevant here, as they appear to have been hired by restauranteurs and gas stations not too picky. However, it would appear that this company is run by bad birds.

  20. Art Deco
    April 17th, 2015 @ 2:45 pm

    Read the Yelp! reviews. These were customers of the business or one across the street that saw their car nabbed. More than one were at the DMV getting some paperwork processed. They were not in the lots long enough to attract the attention of the proprietor even when not customers.

  21. Art Deco
    April 17th, 2015 @ 2:46 pm

    I’ve never encountered that before, but it appears that’s what this company does.

  22. Art Deco
    April 17th, 2015 @ 2:47 pm

    This tow company would regard that as part of the cost of doing business. It’s the restaurant you really have to harry.

  23. Art Deco
    April 17th, 2015 @ 3:10 pm

    She’s from the New Jersey suburbs of Philadelphia and attended Stetson University (annual tuition $40,040). She graduated with high honors and attended Northwestern University grad school.

    It would appear she came of age on Florida’s Space Coast. The suburb is prosperous and abnormally white, but looks from the income figures like an above-the-median suburb, not an upscale suburb. Stetson is a rank-and-file hybrid institution (a college, but with a law school and graduate business program appended), and the sticker price (which most students do not pay) is about a third lower than a top-tier private college. As the acceptance rate is higher than that of the University of Central Florida, I’ll wager that she was there because she did not get into the state school of her choice. The school’s about an hour and a half away from where she finished high school, so she likely was not a commuter student, but she’s still close to her family.

  24. Finrod Felagund
    April 17th, 2015 @ 3:14 pm

    Part of me wants to find a slimy tow truck company, buy a junker car, park it legally in a lot that they patrol, let them tow it, then wait for the explosives that I planted in the car set to detonate the next night to go off.

    “Sorry, you must have jostled the sensitive cargo in the car. Why did you tow that car anyways? It was legally parked.” (include picture of car legally parked)

  25. Art Deco
    April 17th, 2015 @ 3:14 pm

    Sorry, I’m out of the loop. About 20% lower than a top-tier private college.

  26. Art Deco
    April 17th, 2015 @ 3:19 pm

    So you want to appear on Forensic Files?

  27. K-Bob
    April 17th, 2015 @ 4:33 pm

    I’ve been bitten once by that phenomenon. As have my sons (which of course means I got dragged into it). Musicians get bit by it a lot, too, since they are frequently out-of-towners, and don’t know all the “safe” places to park. (Being musicians, they are always looking for free parking.)

  28. K-Bob
    April 17th, 2015 @ 5:50 pm

    Oh I’m allowing for that aspect to be completely true. Some of the worst corruption in the entire country is at the local level. My contractor buddies tell me stories all the time about how they get completely screwed by mob activity (both union mobs and actual mafia mobsters), as well as “protected” groups like certain ethnic groups that managed to gain power (in some towns it’s Middle-Eastern groups, in others it’s the Irish Mafia, and down South, it’s old money types [mostly white, former plantation families who still own a lot of land]; and on it goes). So much money to launder. So much local economy to control.

    But there’s so little to be gained by treating the help badly that it’s just not worth it. Better to go to city council and raise a fuss.

    If you’re an out-of-towner, you’d be at the mercy of the corruption, or stuck waiting for (or organizing) a helpful class-action suit to join.

  29. Art Deco
    April 17th, 2015 @ 8:26 pm

    No, the company is a contractor hired by local businesses. These people were nabbed in commerical parking lots, not on the street or in city lots.

  30. Wraith
    April 17th, 2015 @ 8:56 pm

    Ew. No. No, she’s not.

  31. trangbang68
    April 17th, 2015 @ 9:04 pm

    Hate to go all old school chauvinist but maybe this will get the sports babes off ESPN. It’s annoying to watch a college football game and have some chick doing play by play.

  32. K-Bob
    April 18th, 2015 @ 12:13 am

    That’s what I assumed.

  33. Daniel Freeman
    April 18th, 2015 @ 2:00 am

    She’s not my type, but neither is ESPN. I imagine that she is suited to her audience.

  34. RS
    April 18th, 2015 @ 7:35 am

    I don’t dispute that this business is a bad one. My point was that in our area, there are limits on what tow companies can do. They must be called by the cops. Private business owners cannot engage tow companies on their own to remove vehicles. If there is no police order for a tow, the company is guilty of conversion and at a minimum pays civil damages for the value of the car.

  35. Alec Leamas
    April 18th, 2015 @ 10:43 am

    Perhaps, but when you’ve been stuck up by a highwayman you probably want to get whatever satisfaction you can, including levying the most biting insults you can muster. I chalk McHenry’s outburst up to that, rather than concluding that her comments represent the core of her personality. It would be a different situation if (as the media attempted to present the matter) she had simply had a dispute with an innocent store clerk, rather than the collection arm of a racket.

  36. daisy
    April 19th, 2015 @ 10:35 am

    The restaurant has a sign on the door saying don’t leave your car here overnight or you will be towed. She left her car and got towed. That’s not the poor clerk’s fault.

  37. Nan
    April 20th, 2015 @ 10:56 pm

    In MN, the sign saying unauthorized vehicles will be towed also has the towing company name & number.

  38. Nan
    April 20th, 2015 @ 11:03 pm

    When I was younger, I worked for a company where a lot of people complained about the shipping department. I never had a problem; I got to know the guys who worked there, and when I went downstairs with something urgent, I told them what I wanted and asked if it was possible. Others would fly downstairs and make demands but never give them the time of day otherwise.

  39. Daniel Freeman
    April 20th, 2015 @ 11:25 pm

    They have those here too, but of course you hear stories of tow companies seeming to target the lots with small, poorly placed, obscured or broken signs.

  40. Nan
    April 20th, 2015 @ 11:30 pm

    My parish lot has signs saying 2 hr parking; a woman who was there for an all-day workshop was concerned about getting towed and I told her the sign wasn’t for her. They knew we were there and would be there all day so nobody was going to call the towing company. We’re near a festival location and the church parking lot is attractive to people who’d rather walk than pay for parking.

    One day, I parked in the lot and the head of security was out there with a clipboard, telling people the parking was 2 hrs and only for the church, writing the time and license plate number. No idea if they actually towed people. I’d never talked to him but he totally ignored me; unknown to me, they knew everyone and every car so knew I was legit.

  41. K-Bob
    April 21st, 2015 @ 2:49 pm

    That’s it. You may not always get what you want, but you’ll do better than the ones who treat them like dirt.

  42. Daniel Freeman
    April 22nd, 2015 @ 4:12 pm

    With the benefit of a couple of days to digest the story, Fox had a pretty good take on the 19th, given the limitations of a five-minute TV interview.