The good guys won.
Nobody knows how much of the $148-million will ultimately go to Ruby Freeman and her daughter, Shaye Moss.
But in a disheartening time of legal stalling, when it looks like the United States cannot protect itself from those who would tear it apart, at least mother and daughter have been awarded an astounding judgment against Rudy Giuliani.
The broken-down bully calculated that he could charge the poll workers with trying to swing the 2020 election, if he used the stereotype of Black criminality.
Was this Rudy Giuliani all along? Did he build his career as public prosecutor on bashing the minorities? Was he playing to white prejudices – bragging about busting the squeegee guys who tried to clean windshields for quarters on the clogged streets of Manhattan?
Our hero. Protecting us. But he wasn’t smart enough when he stuck government offices near the Twin Towers, already threatened by violence. Was he ever anything more than a mirror image of the racist punk he served, who grew up on Midland Parkway in posh Jamaica Estates? They knew the white buttons to press.
Bullies know this stuff. Like in the 2016 campaign when Trump pointed out a Black heckler and, from a safe distance, Trump made a heroic punching gesture and said he would love to….
Big man. Playing to the racists who have come out from under the rocks. (Plus, American anti-Semites who have dragged out their inbred prejudices during about the violence in the Middle East. It never went away.)
As for domestic politics: Rigged election? Let’s pick on the Black women.
But these Black women had something on their side – faith and resolution.
When they testified at the Jan. 6 hearings, they were a monument of righteousness. The mother, Ruby, sat at her daughter’s shoulder, willing her strength, a reverse-gender Pietà.
And those two women were flanked by officers who had been heroes in protecting the Congress on that horrible day -- big Harry Dunn and his colleagues.
On Friday, outside a courtroom in DC, the mother and daughter seemed happily stunned by the jury decision. They were not spending a penny of it, inasmuch as Rudy may very well be poor. Plus, what is the cost of the two women hearing Trumpite footsteps and seeing Rudy shadows for a long time? But the church ladies were cheered by the legal support, and when they made their statements they did not gloat.
In fact, they witnessed their faith on the sidewalk – street preachers, the resolution one hears at the Black churches.
They can’t exactly go home again. Too many bad people out there. But they could get in a protected auto and leave the sidewalk to a broken-down former prosecutor, on a perp walk, his role now reversed.
I used to know Rudy Giuliani – Yankee fan, America’s mayor who stood up big when the airplanes hit us. He was everywhere that terrible autumn, walking with the cops and the firemen and the priests on the narrow streets of downtown. And in his spare time, he went to root for his Yankees as they advanced to the World Series.
Not even two months after the attack, Giuliani managed to follow the Yankees to games in Arizona. He was an appealing figure, waiting with reporters for the clubhouse doors to open.
“You’re crazy,” I said to a man operating without sleep, on sheer nerve.
“Yeah,” Giuliani would admit with a weary smile. And nobody would deny him the cross-country flights, just for a few hours of rooting, normalcy.
Eventually, he signed up to serve the bully, the bigot, the liar, who somehow became president. Instead of rooting for the fabled Yankees, Giuliani was now leading the cheers, giving terrible advice to a real-estate phony. They deserved each other, as Billy Martin once said about a much less important issue.
Giuliani knew the formula. Blame the Black women.
Now he is an old, feeble man, with the shakes, rumors of drinking, his teeth sticking out of his mouth, Rudy the Fool, but still capable of sounding like Rudy the Prosecutor.
The truth will come out, he said on the sidewalk on Friday, but instead, guile seemed to ooze out of him, like hair dye on a hot summer day.
He used to go after the squeegee guys. Then he served Trump, the real-estate exaggerator. Then he tried to bash church ladies. Bad move, dude.