Wednesday, January 25, 2017

The Week of the Inauguration: Resistance and Optimism

On the day after the inauguration (whose size I will not comment upon😊, the country witnessed an enormous outpouring of resistance, not only to Trump and the Republicans, but also to the policies of the past 40 or so years (including those of corporatist Democrats) that have benefited the few at the expense of the many.



My wife was one of half a million or more who were present at the extraordinary Washington DC Women's March; nearly everyone iI know attended similar, albeit smaller, marches elsewhere (Boston, Manchester NH, New York, Philadelphia, Chicago) and I went with my grand-daughter, my daughter-in-law, and my ex-wife to a march of 15,000 in Montpelier, VT, which was so large that hundreds of attendees had to leave their cars parked (illegally) on the shoulders of I-89 after the 2 Montpelier exits were closed because the city couldn't handle any more traffic. [As a result, Bernie Sanders was greatly delayed, but when he finally arrived, he opened his stirring remarks by saying that he'd never seen so many people in Montpelier in his life!]

It was my observation that the Montpelier March and, by all reports, virtually all the marches, were incredibly and authentically intersectional--- conceived, planned, and managed primarily by a small cadre of unaffiliated women; hugely supported by women's organizations, Black Lives Matter activists, refugee and immigrant organizations, LGBTQ activists, civil rights and human rights organizations, religious institutions, pro-choice and many other organizations and activists; and attended joyfully and peacefully by women, men, and transgender individuals, gay and straight, young and old, progressive, liberal, and moderate, in short, people who love our country (warts and all) and believe in the power and existential necessity of democracy.



 

Inspired by these incredible marches, I vowed to speak out as often and as clearly as I can to resist the fascistic instincts of the Bannon-Trump administration, the far-right agenda of the Paul Ryan-led House of Representatives, and the cynical machinations of the Mitch McConnell-led Senate.

My first act was to incorporate the following into my email signature and as my Facebook "photo"

First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—Because I was not a Socialist.  
Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out— Because I was not a Trade Unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out— Because I was not a Jew. 
Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.
Martin Niemöller (1892–1984) was a prominent Protestant pastor who emerged as an outspoken public foe of Adolf Hitler and spent the last seven years of Nazi rule in concentration camps.
And I posted the following on Facebook:

January 25, 2017
There are many ways to keep America great:
1. Resist in every way possible the un-american actions of Donald Trump (e.g., the anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim Executive orders he and his "advisors" are preparing)
2. Work and vote to elect progressive and other well-intentioned people to public office at all levels
3. Support all efforts to reform our federal electoral system (e.g., gerrymandering, the electoral college, winner-take-all primaries, voter suppression laws, closed party primaries and caucuses, disenfranchisement of ex-felons, and more) so that it reflects the will of the people; i.e. one person, one vote in all congressional and presidential elections
4. Actively work for and support causes that you believe in, whether it be climate change, economic inequality, women's rights (especially the right to control their own bodies), immigration, Black Lives Matter and other efforts to redress the wrongs still being done to African-Americans, LGBTQ rights, Native American rights especially treaty rights and protection of sacred lands, etc. etc.
As a modest start, consider signing one or more of the We The People Petitions to the White House. You will probably find quite a few with which you strongly agree and any that receive 100,000 signatures in 30 days, must be reviewed by the White House, put in front of the appropriate policy experts, and issued an official response.
Once you sign one of these petitions, you will receive a confirmation email, asking you to confirm your signature. Be sure to do this; otherwise your signature will not be counted.



Foreign PolicyGovernment & Regulatory Reform Immediately release Donald Trump's full tax returns, with all information needed to verify emoluments clause compliance.…
PETITIONS.WHITEHOUSE.GOV

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