December 10, 2016…
Does anyone still have any questions or doubts about what is about to happen to us here in the USA? About the kind of historical moment at which we have finally arrived?
After the election, there was a certain amount of hopeful “let’s give him a chance” rhetoric – but Trump’s Cabinet choices and public statements soon made the absurdity of such optimism very clear.
To be sure, there is one small glimmer of hope on the horizon: the idea that the Electoral College may actually fulfill the function for which the Founding Fathers designed it, and deny Trump the Presidency. (The recent news about possible Russian intervention in the election may make this possibility more likely.)
But I’m not betting on that. Nor do I expect the Sweet Meteor of Death to come to our rescue.
[UPDATE (Dec. 20, 2016): Sure enough, by all reports the Electoral College has failed. So far, so has the Sweet Meteor of Death.]
[Further update (January 6, 2017): Congress, despite attempted objections, has certified the Electoral College results. Still no sign of the Sweet Meteor of Death, either.]
So the question becomes: what, exactly, do we intend to do about the situation?
This is a matter of individual conscience, of course, and all sorts of suggestions are being put forward, from passive acceptance to guerrilla resistance. The experience of pre-WWII Germany is being examined and re-examined for clues and guidance, but the differences between the rise of Nazism and the rise of Trumpism are significant enough to render such comparisons less than useful.
Here are some of the options suggested so far:
- This article in The Nation suggests four avenues of attack within the system, at the state and municipal levels.
- This article points to the successful but hard-fought struggle against Gov. McCrory and the Republican agenda in North Carolina as an example of how to proceed.
- From Sojourners magazine (the voice of the Religious Left), ten actions that people of faith and others can take to resist.
- The Schweik Collective recommends low-level economic sabotage.
- A Women’s March on Washington has been called for January 21 in DC. There will be other actions around the country in solidarity wth the DC march, including Portland OR, Milwaukee, and other cities.
- Here are SPLC’s Ten Ways to Fight Hate.
- This article on Medium suggests that a network of “rebel cities” would help to “to reclaim democracy from the bottom up.”
- Yale Professor Timothy Snyder has written a 20-point guide to resistance.
- Robert Reich has also drawn up a resistance plan for the first 100 days.
- A group called the “Indivisible Team,” made up of former Congressional staffers, describes how to work with Congress to blunt the Trump agenda.
- My own “50 Ways (At Least) to Defuse a World Crisis” may include some helpful hints.
- Michael Moore offers five ways to counter Trump.
(There are many more of these kinds of articles out there. As I find more, I’ll add them to the list… or comment below with links to similar articles you have found.)
So one can stay and fight, in whatever way, whatever that means to you – or one can flee. I’m suggesting the latter, and I seriously think that others might want to consider the possibility. As the saying goes: “Vote with your feet.”
Now, for myself, I should say that at this point I’m not planning on moving permanently – but I am going to go on an extended trip abroad, six months to a year, maybe more. (I’m heading to Europe to see if I can help with refugee assistance in some way.) I’m thinking that might be enough time for things to sort themselves out.
It’s a privileged option, I know. Not everyone has this choice. The only reason I can even consider it is because I just became old enough to draw funds from my woefully inadequate “retirement” money.
But more folks might be able to pull off a miniaturized version – namely, a symbolic crossing of the border on Inauguration Day, as a protest against the installation of The Donald. (Or as I like to call it, the “Dysauguration.”) Just find your nearest border crossing, and be there by 11 AM Eastern time on January 20, 2017.
We would then cross over just before the Oath of Office is administered, and then stay for the rest of the day (or perhaps longer) before crossing back over to take up the fight.
A large enough crowd showing up at one or more of these sites, even if they cross over for only a few hours, would send a powerful message of non-support to the incoming Administration.
If you’re not near a border but you are near the coast, consider a one-day boat trip into international waters. Or maybe turn the occasion into a brief vacation to the Bahamas. Let’s create a large enough blip in border-crossing statistics to give Donald the clear signal that not everyone is ecstatic about his enthronement.
So, what do you say? See you at the Border?