By Doug Porter
The shock and awe phase of the post-election period is winding down. Now the question ‘what next?’ is coming to the forefront of public consciousness.
Lots of people have ideas. Some of them are pipe dreams. Some of them are impractical. And some of them will evolve into what I can only hope is a wave of widespread, sustained, and effective resistance to the Trump administration’s policy proposals.
(Friday’s column will focus on San Diego-oriented activities. SDFP Editor Frank Gormlie has posted an excellent report on demonstrations around the country.)
For the moment what people are protesting is the very idea of Trump taking over the executive branch along with promises made on the campaign trail. It’s a murky mess to organize against because the man has no plan and his advisors are squabbling.
The First Post-Election Purge
From USA Today:
Several officials, allies of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, have left the team in the wake of Trump’s decision last week to replace Christie as transition chairman with running mate Mike Pence. Pence and the transition’s newly installed executive director Rick Dearborn also are removing lobbyists from the transition, as Pence works to reshape the organization, according to a transition team member with knowledge of the decisions but who was not authorized to discuss them publicly.
Pence met with Trump at the latter’s Manhattan tower to discuss filling White House and Cabinet slots — and also to review required legal papers to effect the change of leadership within the transition team, another reason the process has been delayed.
Trump himself took to Twitter late Tuesday to describe what he called the “very organized process taking place as I decide on Cabinet and many other positions.”
“I am the only one who knows who the finalists are!” he added.
I’m inclined to believe that many of the “leaks” to the press regarding who will be appointed to what positions are deliberate attempts to mislead.
The Muslim Registry
One solid bit of reporting on the incoming administration’s plans came from Reuters, based on an interview with Kansas Secretary of State.
Kobach is reportedly a key member of the Trump transition team. He’s known as the author of tough immigration laws in Arizona, and the architect of voter suppression efforts in Kansas.
Kobach told Reuters last Friday that the immigration group had discussed drafting executive orders for the president-elect’s review “so that Trump and the Department of Homeland Security hit the ground running.”
To implement Trump’s call for “extreme vetting” of some Muslim immigrants, Kobach said the immigration policy group could recommend the reinstatement of a national registry of immigrants and visitors who enter the United States on visas from countries where extremist organizations are active.
Kobach designed a similar program for the Bush administration in the wake of 9/11 attacks that was dropped by Homeland Security after it was deemed redundant and came under fire from civil rights groups for unfairly targeting immigrants from Muslim- majority nations.
No Bill of Rights for Immigrants
In response to reports suggesting Trump’s targeted-for-deportation ‘criminal immigrants’ don’t exist in numbers anywhere near the 2-3 million mark he’s set as a goal, the legal mandate of innocent until proven guilty will get tossed.
From the Los Angeles Times:
The Obama administration set a priority in his second term of deporting migrants with criminal convictions, and it has expelled 530,000 convicted criminals since 2013. Since taking office in 2009, Obama has expelled 2.5 million people, more than any other president.
According to two senior officials in the transition team, Trump’s advisors will seek to widen that net to include migrants who have been charged but not convicted, suspected gang members and drug dealers, and people charged with such immigration violations as illegal reentry and overstaying visas, as well as lower-level misdemeanors.
Localities Fight Back
City administrations around the United States are making it clear they want no part of the Trump administration deportation schemes. Unfortunately, San Diego is not yet one of them.
President-elect @realDonaldTrump facing growing opposition from U.S. mayors when it comes to immigration. #KellyFile pic.twitter.com/z4WCiHnX83
— Megyn Kelly (@megynkelly) November 16, 2016
San Diego officials were quick to deny the accuracy of the city’s inclusion on a list of sanctuary cities in California back in 2015.
From City News Service:
The city of San Diego works cooperatively with federal immigration authorities despite its inclusion in online lists of so-called “sanctuary cities,” the mayor’s office said Wednesday.
In response to an inquiry by City News Service, mayoral spokesman Matt Awbrey wrote that “there is nothing in San Diego’s laws or policies that officially designate it as a ‘sanctuary city.”‘
Another Local Angle on Resisting Trump
The folks at the newly merged Bill of Rights Defense Committee/Defending Dissent Foundation have crafted a model ordinance for activists looking to push back against expected Trump administration actions,
Via the Dissent NewsWire:
We can’t count on Congress to be a check on a gross overreach of Executive Branch powers. But we can look to our own local governments. We can draw a line in the sand around our towns, cities, counties and even a few states. The wall of resistance starts at home.
Join forces with others in your community to pass the Local Civil Liberties Protection Act, which protects fundamental rights and liberties by promoting transparency and accountability and prohibiting or limiting law enforcement engagement in:
- unwarranted surveillance
- immigration enforcement and information sharing with federal authorities
- undercover infiltration of activist groups and religious institutions
- cooperation with military personnel
- over-policing or restricting protests
The model ordinance can be edited to focus on what your community and your coalition decides is most important. We can help you with language and framing, and are in the process of creating narrower model ordinances that will likely be the most necessary after January 20.
Alt Right’s Free Social Media Ride Ends
USA Today reports social media platform Twitter has cracked down on accounts reported for harassment and threats, along with giving users a better option for reporting incidents. Account holders associated with the alt-right movement have been among those suspended.
Among those suspended was Richard Spencer, who runs an alt-right think tank and had a verified account on Twitter.
The alt-right, a loosely organized group that espouses white nationalism, emerged as a counterpoint to mainstream conservatism and has flourished online. Spencer has said he wants blacks, Asians, Hispanics and Jews removed from the U.S….
…Twitter was the platform of choice for the campaign of President-elect Donald Trumpand the alt-right political movement that embraced him. The alt-right used social media to spread its cause of white supremacy, operating largely unchecked by social media giants Twitter and Facebook.
Heidi Beirich, spokeswoman for the Southern Poverty Law Center, told USA TODAY that the center had asked Twitter to remove more than 100 accounts of white supremacists who violated Twitter’s terms of service. She also pointed to two alt-right accounts that had been verified by Twitter, including Spencer’s.
It would appear that twitter’s crackdown does not extend to paid advertisers associated with hate groups. The ad below appeared in my feed last night. (The New Order is the official website of the Nazi Party in the US)
Reports of Hate Crimes Continue
From the Southern Poverty Law Center:
Between Wednesday, November 9, the day after the presidential election, and the morning of Monday, November 14, the Southern Poverty Law Center collected 437 reports of hateful intimidation and harassment.
The following reports were collected through news reports, social media, and direct submissions via SPLC’s #ReportHate page. These incidents, aside from news reports, are largely anecdotal. The SPLC did follow up with a majority of user submissions in an effort to confirm reports. As we reported earlier, many incidents involved direct references to the Trump campaign and its slogans.
Most of the reports involved anti-immigrant incidents (136), followed by anti-black (89) and anti-LGBT (43). Some reports (8) included multiple categories like anti-Muslim and anti-immigrant. The “Trump” category (41) refers to incidents where there was no clear defined target, like the pro-Trump vandalism of a “unity” sign in Connecticut. We also collected 20 reports of anti-Trump intimidation and harassment.
According to Mother Jones, many of these incidents involve the targeting of school age children.
The SPLC has been sounding the alarm for months about the so-called Trump Effect in America’s schools—the rise of classroom bullying and harassment driven, at least in part, by the antagonistic rhetoric of the presidential campaign—and more than one-third of the incidents it has tracked took place at K-12 schools or universities.
These reports coincide with the release of the FBI’s annual report on hate crimes in America. The new federal data, out Monday, showed a roughly 6 percent increase in assaults, bombings, threats, and other hate crimes in 2015. Anti-Muslim crimes jumped nearly 67 percent from 2014; the 257 incidents were the most since 2001, when there were 481 such attacks. Black people faced the most race-based attacks, with incidents up 7.6 percent, and anti-Jewish crimes, which remained the highest among religious-based attacks, went up about 9 percent.
Meanwhile, the right-leaning editors at Reason are dismissing these reports as fabricated or exaggerated.
Black Lives Matter Post-Election Statement
Those of you whose knowledge of the Black Lives Matter movement is limited to what you’ve heard from the mainstream media may be shocked by how leveled-headed their response is to Trump’s election.
Snippets from Mic.com:
On Tuesday, national leaders of Black Lives Matter Global Network said their mandate was unchanged after “the election of a white supremacist to the highest office in American government.”
In a statement released exclusively to Mic, BLM said it would continue to demand an end to police brutality and to fight for the socioeconomic and political empowerment of black people through ongoing organizing efforts….
“…Donald Trump has promised more death, disenfranchisement and deportations. We believe him. The violence he will inflict in office, and the permission he gives for others to commit violence, is just beginning to emerge.
In the face of this, our commitment remains the same: protect ourselves and our communities.
But we ask ourselves — how do we reconcile our vision for future generations’ prosperity with the knowledge that more than half of white voting Americans believe a white supremacist can and should decide what’s best for this country?
Here’s what we know: Civic engagement is one way to engage democracy, and our lives don’t revolve around election cycles. We are obliged to earn the trust of future generations — to defend economic, social and political power for all people. We are confident that we have the commitment, the people power and the vision to organize our country into a safe place for black people — one that leads with inclusivity and a commitment to justice, not intimidation and fear.”
On This Day: 1927 – A county judge in Punxsutawney, Pa., granted an injunction requested by the Clearfield Bituminous Coal Co. forbidding strikers from speaking to strikebreakers, posting signs declaring a strike is in progress, or even singing hymns. Union leaders termed the injunction “drastic.” 1959 – The musical “The Sound of Music” opened on Broadway at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre. 1985 – Colonel Oliver North was put in charge of the shipment of HAWK anti-aircraft missiles to Iran
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“Alt-Right” is too mild a term for these people. Let’s open the floor for some better title suggestions.
bob dorn says
The FOOTWT – Fraternal Order Of The White Right.
Doug Porter says
Gotta share a poem I saw on Twitter:
Boot laces are red,
KKK hoods are white,
They’re called Neo-Nazis,
Not the fucking “alt-right”
Desde la Logan says
Simply call them what they are, bigots and racists, rather than what the espouse.
That’s “political stance they espouse.” :-)
Anna Daniels says
What we can do right here in San Diego, right now, is organize to pass the Local Civil Liberties Protection Act outlined above. A priority should be contacting the new candidates elected to the City Council- Barbary Bry, Georgette Gomez, Chris Ward– and City Attorney elect Mara Elliot.
Let’s do it!