Judith Lewis Mernit

Judith Lewis Mernit writes about energy, the environment, economic justice, and public health from Los Angeles, California. Her work has appeared in High Country News, Sierra Magazine, Yale Environment 360, TakePart, The Atlantic, and the LA Weekly.

Recent Articles

Trouble in Republican Paradise

The Great Awakening of Dana Rohrabacher’s Orange Coast District

(Mindy Schauer/The Orange County Register via AP)
Capital & Main is an award-winning publication that reports from California on economic, political and social issues. The American Prospect is co-publishing this piece. Bethany Webb has lived in coastal Orange County for 40 of her 56 years. She rides a Harley and knows the surfers and served on PTA when her children were in school in Huntington Beach (“HB” to the locals). And yet she did not know the worldviews of some of her friends until the summer of 2016, when the heated presidential race forced people into their ideological corners. “I found out that nice, funny people I knew were harboring ugly, racist thoughts,” Webb says. “I unfriended people I’d known for 40 years. I called one a racist to his face.” She also found out that other nice, funny people shared her beliefs. “We thought we were alone in our ideals. Now we know we’re not.” In the swank seaside hamlets of California’s 48th Congressional District,...