By Lila Garrett, David Swanson, Suzanne Patzer, Bob Fitrakis, Ruthie Sakheim, Harvey Wasserman and many more …
(originally published on Reader Supported News on April 17, 2017)
he unthinkable is upon us.
A president of the United States poses a clear and present danger to our global survival. It’s become our duty to remove him soon, beyond the electoral system, and strictly without violence.
President Trump’s random missile attack is the predictable martial diversion for a failing regime. Had Barack Obama done it the entire right wing would be screaming for impeachment.
To justify an impetuous fling, Trump summoned images of chemical weapons killing helpless children. But had those kids been refugees trying to come here, Trump might well have barred them, and derided their parents.
This chaotic regime’s military adventures have already killed innumerable innocents in Yemen and elsewhere for no apparent reason. Had this attack targeted North Korea, or another nuclear-armed nation, mushroom clouds might now be ending human life on Earth.
This regime is cynically assaulting our global ecosystems, the rising green infrastructure on which our ecological and economic future depends, as well as women, people of color, the poor, the elderly, the infirm. Trump has polluted the White House with an outrageous culture of personal gain at public expense.
Donald Trump lost the 2016 election by at least 2.8 million popular votes. He lost the exit polls in the five states that swung the Electoral College. GOP secretaries of state used Crosscheck and other computer programs to disenfranchise countless citizens of color. They may well have flipped the electronic voting machines on which 80% of the nation’s ballots were cast or counted.
Without a legitimate electoral process, and saddled with a timid corporatist Democratic Party, how do we respond?
Two US presidents have been impeached but not removed. Richard Nixon resigned in the face of a massive popular upheaval. By his own admission, that uprising prevented him from using nuclear weapons in Vietnam.
Donald Trump is the corporatist response to a rising social fervor that speaks for the soul of this nation. Bernie Sanders remains America’s most popular politician. Even in the face of a totally corrupted governmental structure, we must never underestimate our larger power.
As with Nixon, the madness of today’s White House demands a whole new level of organizing, resistance and overthrow, of “satyagraha” – focused peaceful action – pioneered by the American independence, abolitionist, suffragette and labor movements, by Mahatma Gandhi’s Quit India campaign, Dr. Martin Luther King’s work for civil rights, the nonviolent resistance that helped bring down the Soviet Union, Nelson Mandala’s victory against South African apartheid, the Otpor campaign against Serbia’s Milosevic dictatorship, the global feminist, No Nukes, LGBTQ+, Occupy, Black Lives Matter, Sandernista campaigns, and many more.
Today there are no simple answers, except to be civil in our disobedience. Any violence must be assumed to come from those who want us to fail.
Our way forward might include mass rallies, marches, boycotts, strikes, non-cooperation, tax resistance, guerrilla theater, door-to-door conversation, and much more we may not yet envision.
The great nonviolent strategist Gene Sharp lists some 200 such tactics at his legendary Einstein Institute. Mark and Paul Engler beautifully explore nonviolent activism in their “This Is an Uprising” (www.nationbooks.org). Jim Hightower has gracefully mentioned some longer-term solutions in his latest column.
As with Nixon, we suspect that somewhere in the corrupt chaos of Trump’s towering arrogance, we will find the critical overreach.
And somewhere in the mix of our own relentless activism, there will be the power to make that matter.
Our nation was born of an impossible campaign that overthrew a tyrant.
To RESTORE SANITY in today’s nuclear age we may need even more creativity, imagination and good faith.
But we had damn well better win fast, before this madman kills us all.