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The Trump Era Will Test Us. What Are You Willing to Risk?


The Trump Era Will Test Us. What Are You Willing to Risk?

Fran Korten

The signs of defiance and compassion are everywhere. Cities from San Francisco to New York are defending their status as “sanctuary cities,” ready to defy Donald Trump’s promised orders that could lead to the deportation of more than 2 million immigrants. People are wearing safety pins on their shirts to signal their willingness to support vulnerable people who may feel unsafe.


I'm old but I have a dog who is dependent upon me still. Other than that I am willing to risk my life and imprisonment. Re Safety Pins: At a recent local gathering with immigrants they said: a safety pin could be used as a false lure...not to do it. Use known safe channels


I suppose we each can choose one of two theories of living.

One, for those who may be unable to belly up to the bar and take big risks is embodied in Albert King's classic blues song "Everybody wants to go to heaven, but nobody wants to die".

The other, for those who accept their long-term mortality and see the benefit of taking the risk is embodied in the character Old Lodge Skins in the Dustin Hoffman movie, "Little Big Man" who unabashedly held that "It's a good day to die!"


The key is to not be afraid. Support the companies that stand up to bullying and divest from those that cave. Don't worry about "false lures." My safety pin (a pretty subtle lure anyway) rides on my purse strap just above the tag with the trans flag colors and the hashtag #I'llGoWithYou. I've had a large sticker version of that on my car since just after the NC bill was passed (alerted by my trans child), and though no one has asked for my safe passage to the restroom, a couple of young folk working the drive-thru window at Burger King discussed it and, as I departed, told me they appreciated it. This in rural NW NJ. Watch the young folks; they're braver than all us oldies put together.


Life can get pretty basic. What people care about the most at the end of the day is whether they have the means to keep their families together, housed and fed. Many don't. The US shut down/shipped out a huge number of jobs since the 1980s, ended actual welfare aid in the 1990s. We created an abundant surplus of job-ready people who are desperate for any job at any wage. There's nothing to fall back on.The last I heard, there are 7 jobs for every 10 jobless people who still have the means to pursue one (home address, phone, etc.). What did you think happens to those who are left behind?

How much risk can most people take?


It's a different story when you end up homeless. We're 20 years into one hell of a war on the poor that our more fortunate have had the luxury of ignoring. Meanwhile, the overall life expectancy of the US poor has already fallen to age 60-62.

Understand that the rent comes due. The last I heard, there are 7 jobs for every 10 jobless people who still have the means to pursue one -- home address, phone, etc. When those are gone, you're out.


Just one minor correction -- we're thirty-six years into the war on the poor, which began with the election of Ronald Reagan.


And that's exactly what the elites want. They want to keep ratcheting the odds against the people, to the point where the only thing they can manage with their multiple jobs is just to barely survive. Sure the elites will try to make sure that the people have enough bread and circuses to not do anything outside of the occasional vocal complaint but even the elites are starting to get a bit too greedy. How much will the people take until they realize that to stand up is the only way not to be left behind?


I would expect the Internet to be a big help. It is now possible for large numbers of people to get together quickly. I think the majority of Americans are aware that Trump is pushing largely an agenda of the right wing fringe, people generally considered to be wacky. This would be the equivalent of a candidate on the left barely winning an election and pushing a communist agenda. Had Trump won virtually every state and won the popular vote by many millions that would be a somewhat different matter (given his views that would probably be impossible). As it was it appeared he needed the help of Russia and the head of the FBI to win, and at that he lost the popular vote by almost three million. So his agenda is absolutely one than most Americans don't want. Outside of the most rural areas pretty much everyone should be against him. As always he will try to get away with whatever he can. He has no ethics. He doesn't even always follow the law. Many people assumed he would become respectable if he actually won but that doesn't seem possible for him and he only knows how to act like a low life. He will drag the presidency into the gutter where he has dragged everything else he has been involved in. I think he so out of bounds that many people in high places will stand up to him. What he offering is completely unacceptable. It would be like losing a war to a fascist state and being occupied. If our worst fears about Trump are realized I believe many people will take great risks. I would expect many good jobs to given up. A few have done that in the past. Many more will probably find that is the only course to take. Materialism is pretty empty anyway. There may not be really that much to lose. We must defend journalists. Dictators have to control communications. With all the lies going around the truth is getting lost. Making sure the truth can be communicated is absolutely critical.


He's planning on corrupting internet freedom. That's a big monkey wrench in activism.


Speak for yourself.


When it comes to protesting against the government, you are risking it all. In the spring of 1970 when many were protesting our involvement in Southeast Asia(Vietnam Occupation), on college campuses and in Washington DC, things got out of hand really fast. Police and poorly trained National Guardsmen were used to put down the protests on campuses . I witnessed excessive uses of force against unarmed young women students, the use of pepper spray, and rubber bullets. Four young people at Kent State in Ohio payed the ultimate price. If you all remember back to the Democratic primary season, Senator Bernie Sanders made it quite clear that when millions of us get involved in our government and express our disagreements, we can make things happen. During the Vietnam War protests, we had at times, tens of thousands protesting in one place and in Washington DC in May of 1970 we had 100,000 attend and in 1971 we had over 200,000 show up on the Washington Mall to voice their anger at the Nixon Administration. Now, we are living in a different time. As Bernie Sanders said, we will need millions to get involved, on a nationwide basis, in every major city we can organize and assemble in. It will not be easy and some may get hurt. The Oligarchs won't relinquish power easily. Hopefully, the corporate MSM will cover the protests and maybe if that happens, the government security forces will be restrained. But, you cannot always count on that. I'm getting older myself, but if the younger people in this country care enough about standing up to tyranny, and are willing to be instrumental in organizing and amassing large numbers of people to demand change, I will stand with them and risk my life.


I almost gave you a like until you mentioned Russia.


We ended welfare for the less fortunate, and created programs to give even more welfare to the most fortunate.


Even Trump has now said he thinks Russia hacked the emails.


"Revolutionary change does not come as one cataclysmic moment (beware of such moments!) but as an endless succession of surprises, moving zigzag toward a more decent society. We don’t have to engage in grand, heroic actions to participate in the process of change. Small acts, when multiplied by millions of people, can quietly become a power no government can suppress, a power that can transform the world.

Even when we don’t “win,” there is fun and fulfillment in the fact that we have been involved, with other good people, in something worthwhile. We need hope. An optimist isn’t necessarily a blithe, slightly sappy whistler in the dark of our time. To be hopeful in bad times is not being foolishly romantic. It is based on the fact that human history is a history not only of competition and cruelty but also of compassion, sacrifice, courage, kindness.

What we choose to emphasize in this complex history will determine our lives. If we see only the worst, it destroys our capacity to do something. If we remember those times and places-and there are so many-where people have behaved magnificently, it energizes us to act, and raises at least the possibility of sending this spinning top of a world in a different direction. And if we do act, in however small a way, we don’t have to wait for some grand utopian future. The future is an infinite succession of presents, and to live now as we think human beings should live, in defiance of all that is bad around us, is itself a marvelous victory."

Howard Zinn


The Internet has been used by activists to fight dictators but has also been used by dictators to control populations.


Russia denies it, Wikileaks (which obtained the information) denies that Russia had any involvement.

Now can you tell me how this to-do had any impact on the election results? By shining a light on the Clinton wing? Heaven forbid, voters should have the facts! Actually, voting machines weren't hacked, very few actually saw the emails, and people had already decided whether to vote D or R before this fuss came up. It has been irresponsible to ignore the fact that the Clinton wing had powerfully alienated much of the Dem voting base over the past 20 years. People said from the start that if H. Clinton were selected, a Republican would be elected.


Probably only because he thought it was starting to make him look bad to keep doubting it.


Now you're quoting Trump.