Jan 22, 2017

Millions Protest Trump; Cite Civil Liberties, Hate, Inequality, Environment

Nearly 100,000 protested Donald Trump at
a Madison Wisconsin rally on Jan 21 2017

Resistance as an Act of Faith in Democracy

The adminstration of Donald Trump faces hostile, popular and organized opposition arrayed against this new president holding to unwanted policies amid widespread personal revulsion.

Popular sentiment was displayed in some 600 Women Rallies for Rights events held one day after the inauguration on Saturday, (NYT), (Twitter).

Millions took to the streets across the world as Americans seek new paths of opposition to this right-wing figure who ran on a platform of hate, retaliation against political enemies, and anti-science postures causing anxiety over the future of democracy. Trump's approval rating, already at historical lows, has now plummeted to 32 percent.

The White House site now resembles a rightwing political campaign web-page, using the same language as the 2015-16 Trump campaign.

As Trump hands over control of the government to billionaires, corporations and open racists, the shock of the election of Trump has millions shaken in their faith of democracy, and the intelligence and decency of white America.

From Charlie P. Pierce at Esquire

Faces of resistance at Madison Wisconsin at pro-people
rally Jan 21, 2017. At front is Kate Stormer
"Take Hitler and stick him on the funny page!"

WASHINGTON, D.C.—In 1978, there was a fairly big protest in Washington in favor of the passage of the Equal Rights Amendment. Janet Dunn came down from Connecticut. Her daughter Laurie came with her. The crowd was big. The Dunns were excited. The ERA, of course, never passed because what was then called The New Right mobilized against it primarily through an activist woman named Phyllis Schlafly. On Saturday, I caught up with Laurie and Janet Dunn, as well as Janet's son, Mitchell, in the middle of an immovable mass of humanity that filled a wide boulevard from building to building on either side. Mitchell was leading the way. Laurie was working from behind, asking people to make some sort of room for them. Janet was in a wheelchair. After all, she's 91-years-old now.

As we moved through the throng as a sort of small parade of our own—The Dunns picked up a few folks in their wake as they moved along, including me—Janet became something of a star. There would be room to move for a few dozen yards and then we would come up on one of the video screens carrying the speeches from the main stage at 3rd Street and Independence and the crowd would solidify again. And you'd hear Ashley Judd or Michael Moore or Debbie Wasserman Schultz—yeah, I couldn't believe it, either—for a few minutes and then Laurie and the rest of us would start politely asking the folks to make a hole and make it wide.
- Read the rest of Pierce's dispatch at Esquire -

Sharon Captain at pro-equality, anti-Trump
rally in Duluth, Minnesota, Jan. 21, 2017
In 20th century America, it was a decades-long parlor game ruminating over the face of fascism in America, should it arrive. Fascism has always been here, but most of us have not noticed until it touches us personally.

Now, a fascist is in the White House and Americans are looking to their futures and they are determined, they are scared, and there is no stopping Americans working together against fascism.

Popular opinion has smashed the worst of presidents, the most destructive of wars, and the cruelest systems of injustice.

Fascism is ever busy, hate is a force never at rest.

The idea, the slander, that fascism and hate will prevail over liberty and love is belied by the multitudes who in the words of Bertrand Russell cast hope over fear. Trump as troller-in-chief wishes despair and hopelessness on America; such is the object of the fascist.

From Russell's Proposed Roads To Freedom - Socialism, Anarchism and Syndicalism, (1918, Cornwall Press, Inc, Cornwall New York), [Chapter VIII, The World As It Could Be Made]:

... Those whose lives are fruitful to themselves, to their friends, or to the world are inspired by hope and sustained by joy: they see in imagination the things that might be and the way in which they are to be brought into existence. In their private relations they are not pre-occupied with anxiety lest they should lose such affection and respect as they receive: they are engaged in giving affection and respect freely, and the reward comes of itself without their seeking. In their work they are not haunted by jealousy of competitors, but concerned with the actual matter that has to be done. In politics, they do not spend time and passion defending unjust privileges of their class or nation, but they aim at making the world as a whole happier, less cruel, less full of conflict between rival greeds, and more full of human beings whose growth has not been dwarfed and stunted by oppression.

A life lived in this spirit--the spirit that aims at creating rather than possessing--has a certain fundamental happiness, of which it cannot be wholly robbed by adverse circumstances. This is the way of life recommended in the Gospels, and by all the great teachers of the world. Those who have found it are freed from the tyranny of fear, since what they value most in their lives is not at the mercy of outside power. If all men could summon up the courage and the vision to live in this way in spite of obstacles and discouragement, there would be no need for the regeneration of the world to begin by political and economic reform: all that is needed in the way of reform would come automatically, without resistance, owing to the moral regeneration of individuals. But the teaching of Christ has been nominally accepted by the world for many centuries, and yet those who follow it are still persecuted as they were before the time of Constantine. Experience has proved that few are able to see through the apparent evils of an outcast's life to the inner joy that comes of faith and creative hope. If the domination of fear is to be overcome, it is not enough, as regards the mass of men, to preach courage and indifference to misfortune: it is necessary to remove the causes of fear, to make a good life no longer an unsuccessful one in a worldly sense, and to diminish the harm that can be inflicted upon those who are not wary in self- defense. ...

Resistance is strong

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