Inspiration in the face of oppression

As I have watched with horror over the last week or so south of the border, I am not just outraged — I’m also inspired!

There’s no denying the fact that President Trump is a racist, a misogynist and an outright liar. Nor can there be any denying that he is narcissistic. His executive orders issued in a flurry over the last week or so are counter to all the values I hold. Why, then, am I inspired?

Two nights ago I watched Amy Goodman and Juan Gonzalez’ independent global news show, Democracy Now!. They had extensive film footage of the demonstrations at airports that manifested almost instantaneously upon news of President Trump’s executive order banning entry by citizens and refugees from seven predominantly Muslim nations. These were not small demonstrations!

The American Civil Liberties Union jumped into the fray immediately. Membership applications to the ACLU spiked and donations soared. The rule of law was brought to bear. Judges issued orders overturning important aspects of Trump’s executive order. Acting Attorney General Sally Yates was fired by Trump for refusing to defend the travel ban.

Corporate America, rarely a friend of progressive movements, spoke strongly against this anti-immigration order. Starbucks committed to hiring 10,000 refugees. Google, Nike, Airbnb, Lyft, Coca-Cola, Facebook and others all denounced Trump’s executive order and/or issued statements about the important contributions immigrants make. Trump’s first presidential approval ratings are the lowest of any president since Gallup started doing such surveys in 1953 when Eisenhower was president.

Senior Republican leaders, including senators John McCain and Lindsay Graham have spoken strongly against President Trump’s immigration order. It’s unheard of for senior Republican senators to speak against their president.

I am strongly convinced that there is a silver lining to this very dark cloud.

A massive progressive movement is taking shape. I predict it will sweep Trump from office. He is a fool and a petty tyrant. The people are wise. Wisdom will prevail.

And in the aftermath, we will have the opportunity to construct a much more humane and democratic system than the one that brought this petty tyrant to power. One step backward, two steps forward — for the people are always inspiring.

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