Thursday, November 10, 2016

Thoughts on the Anti-Trump Protests Happening Across the Country

When seeing news of the anti-Trump protests happening across the country, my first thought was:

"No guys.  Not yet.  Don't protest the fact that we just had a peaceful democratic election.  Wait for Trump to actually do something, and then protest him."

And I tweeted something to that effect at the time.

I have, however, changed my mind after hearing Van Jones:

"Your candidate has been one of the most explosively provocative candidates in the history of our country, and there's a price to be paid for that," said Van Jones.

Yes, exactly.  If you run a campaign built on demonizing certain groups, then there's a price to be paid for it come election day.  Especially when you make promises that you're going to to ban these groups from the country.  You may have won the election, but you can't expect these groups to just sit back and be happy about it.
If these people want to get out into the streets and let everyone know they're angry about Donald Trump, I don't blame them.

Addendum 1: November 10, 2016

A High Schooler Who Helped Organize An Anti-Trump Protest Explains What Motivated Her To Hit The Streets

Unfortunately I couldn't figure out how to embed the video.  But this clip is well worth watching.  You can clearly hear the pain in this girl's voice.

Partial transcript via uproxx:

“It means a lot to me right now because a lot of my family, a lot of my friends are undocumented. It’s not fair, it’s really not fair that he said that he will deport every Mexican, every Central American. He said that basically Mexicans are drug dealers, and that’s not true! It’s very not true. We are a working class, we struggle in this city, and it’s very hard.”

Which reinforces what I previously said about the anti-Trump protests---when you run that sort of campaign, this is the sort of protest you have to expect.

Update--copy of the video below

Addendum 2: November 12, 2016

So, I think I've discovered a contradiction in the logic of Trump supporters. Let me know what you think:
1) You can't protest, because this is a democracy, and you have to respect the will of the people.
2) It doesn't matter that Hillary got more popular votes, because this isn't a democracy, it's a republic, and our founding fathers deliberately put these checks and balances on the will of the people

Addendum 3: November 13, 2016

A couple different articles recently that caught my eye:

On describing an Interview with Mike Pence on November 10
Pence Promises Supporters That LGBTQ Rights Will Be FIRST To Go

And one from
Donald Trump Says He’ll Immediately Deport Two To Three Million Undocumented Immigrants

The ironic thing about both these announcements is that they came at a time when Trump supporters can't possibly understand why people are protesting:
"Time to get your big boy pants on," Trump supporters are saying.  "We won the election, now you have to get over it.  We hated it just as much when Obama won, but we didn't protest. blah blah blah blah."  (I'm quoting from memory, but I think this is just about verbatim from several comments I've seen on Facebook from Trump supporters).

Guys, when you promise to take away the rights of a whole group of people, or when you promise to kick another whole group out of the country, then you have to expect people to protest.
Yes, I get it, you won.  But these groups are not going to go like lambs to the slaughter.  The gay people are not going to be like, "Well, fair enough, you won, I guess you can take away my rights now."  The undocumented workers are not going to be like, "Yep, fair enough.  Send me away from my family.  You won fair and square."

This is still America.  If you run a campaign on these type of issues, this is the price you pay come election day.


I generally try and avoid getting caught up in debates in Facebook comments.  (I save my venting for this blog instead.)  But I couldn't resist this one.  One of my friends was supporting the protests on Facebook, and someone else wrote in:
Does the country and your love for it have any value here ?
To which I wrote in:

But you only get to play the "let's all come together for the country" card when you present a view of the country that includes everyone. When you run a campaign that says "all of these people are drug-dealers and we're going to deport them" and "all of those people are terrorists and we're going to register them" then you can't expect those people to just sit back quietly. They're scared 

Just in case someone with a long memory accuses me of being a hypocrite, I should make this addendum.  I did indeed attend the inaugural day protest for George W. Bush in 2001.  But to my mind that was different because:
A). It was organized by Nader supporters, who were protesting the two-party system, and had been planning to protest no matter who won in 2000, and
B). By that point in time, George W. Bush had already selected his cabinet.  And as you'll recall, after winning on a razor thin margin, and losing the popular vote, he then proceeded to cram his cabinet full of crazy right-wing nut jobs.  So there was already legitimate cause to be angry with him.

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