By Mike Hersh for Mike F., Donna, Judy, Dr. Bill, Janis, Dan, Deb, Kimberly, and Bryan—Your PDA National Team
Help Progressive Democrats of America (PDA) stand up against violent, hateful right wing extremism. Only empowered progressives can effectively confront the tide of oppression personified by Trump’s cruelty. All conservatives co-sign hate and white male supremacy by not shunning or confronting these ugly tendencies that currently dominate their movement. By enabling and cheering on Trump. By trading in hate, ignorance, and resentment. By blocking needed reform. By fighting modernity. Today’s conservatism is a clear and present danger to humanity.
PDA is joining allies across the USA demanding an immediate end to Trump’s vengeful, counterproductive, disgusting “zero tolerance” policies! TOMORROW, June 30th: Please join PDA demanding justice and compassion for migrants. Find a March or event near you. In DC, join PDA as we support the UDC Law Latino/a Law Students Association, School of Law alumni, and friends in a march for family reunification (more details below).
Even as the right wing hatred escalates, we will not be intimidated or silenced. Time magazine reports:
“Capitol Police arrested nearly 600 people Thursday after hundreds of loudly chanting women demonstrated inside a Senate office building against President Donald Trump’s treatment of migrant families. Among them were a Washington state congresswoman, the lawmaker said on Twitter.
“The protests came as demonstrations occurred around the country over the Trump administration’s policy of separating immigrant families. They offered a glimpse of what might happen on Saturday when rallies are planned coast to coast.
Amid unrelenting daily images of distraught immigrant children separated from parents and herded into fenced enclosures, women sat on the floor of the Senate Hart Office building’s 90-foot-high atrium. Seated around Alexander Calder’s black metallic “Mountain and Clouds” sculpture, they shouted slogans and cheered for a handful of fist-pumping lawmakers—all Democrats—who waded into the crowd.”
Please see: Nearly 600 Arrested in Washington, D.C. During Protests of President Trump’s Immigration Policy, by Alan Fram and Matthew Daly / AP, June 28, 2018.
But hate is on the rise—in part an angry reaction to outspoken women, people of color, LGBTQ individuals and others of us who refuse to back down in the face of oppression. Planet Transgenderreports: Philly transgender group home firebombed in hate crime attack. And CommonDreams reports: “It has been more than 13 hours since Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) announced that she was forced to cancel speaking events due to “very serious” lynching threats, and President Donald Trump—who just days ago warned Waters to “be careful what you wish for”—has yet to issue so much as a tweet denouncing the threats against the life of a sitting member of Congress.
“This is just one in several very serious threats the United States Capitol Police are investigating in which individuals threatened to shoot, lynch, or cause me serious bodily harm.”
—Rep. Maxine Waters
“‘As the president has continued to lie and falsely claim that I encouraged people to assault his supporters, while also offering a veiled threat that I should ‘be careful’, even more individuals are leaving [threatening] messages and sending hostile mail to my office,’ Waters said in a statement late Thursday, specifically blaming Trump’s Twitter attack for setting off the wave.”
Please see: After Warning Congresswoman ‘Be Careful,’ Trump Has Yet to Denounce Lynching Threats Made Against Maxine Waters. Highlighting attacks on Waters by the president and right-wing media, one commentator said of the death threats: “This is exactly what they wanted,” by Jake Johnson, staff writer.
This Trump-led tyranny is not new or isolated and it’s not about “economic anxiety.” It’s nothing other than pure racism and hatred weaponized to terrorize women, people of color, LGBTQ individuals, religious and other minorities as well as anyone who demands the USA live up to its stated ideals. Remember W. Bush issued similar threats against the musical artists The Dixie Chicks—normalizing unpresidential threats of retaliation against any who dared question right wing authority.
The Charlotte Observer reports, “A website tied to a candidate for the North Carolina General Assembly says God is a racist white supremacist and that Jews are descended from Satan.Russell Walker is a Republican candidate running for state House District 48 which includes Scotland and Hoke counties. On Tuesday, the North Carolina Republican Party withdrew its support for Walker.” Please see: “‘God is racist,’ Jewish people ‘all descend from Satan,’ NC candidate says,” by Abbie Bennett, June 27, 2018 / Updated June 28, 2018.
Why had the Republican Party ever supported Walker in the first place? Why do rank and file Republican voters embrace this racism and hatred—not just in North Carolina, but nationwide? Why are conservatives chanting and marching for white supremacy? Why are they applauding sadistic treatment of children at the border? Why are they shooting up and fire bombing newspaper offices, schools, health clinics, group homes, movie theaters, and churches? What about today’s conservatives makes them think this way and act this way? Unfortunately, this is nothing new.
It’s not just Donald Trump. He’s as much a symptom of right wing extremism as its cause. Conservative hatred and violence has plagued America since the first Europeans arrived. The ugly history is repleat with vile horrors: from genocide against indigenous peoples through slavery and continuing with institutional and systemic racism, sexism, homophobia and other injustice and exploitation today.
We who honor peace over conflict, who embrace our diversity, and who know that we are all a big human family must do more to confront and roll back inhumanity. We must rise up! Are you ready to redouble your efforts to make our society begin to live up to our lofty words and ideals? That all people are created equal, with inalienable rights, deserving of justice and all human needs. Stand with PDA to help build the massive movement we need to make it so.
Anywhere in the USA: Find a March or action near you. In D.C. Please join PDA supporting the UDC Law Latino/a Law Students Association, Immigration and Human Rights Clinic Co-Director Lindsay Harris, Professor John Brittain, and School of Law alumni and friends TOMORROW, Saturday, June 30, in a march for family reunification!
We will meet at 10:15 am in front of UDC Law at 4340 Connecticut Ave., NW. We will walk to the UDC/Van Ness Metro and proceed to Lafayette Park to join the Families Belong Together March—see https://www.familiesbelongtogether.org/ Please free free to forward this email.
Justice Or Bust,
Mike Hersh for Mike F., Donna, Judy, Dr. Bill, Janis, Dan, Deb, Kimberly, and Bryan—Your PDA National Team
P.S. We’re here to help you make progress in your state and locality! If you need help organizing a new PDA chapter or energizing your existing chapter, please contact PDA Field Coordinator Dan O’Neal.
Join the PDA Phone Team making easy, effective calls from your own home with Mike “Phone Guy” Fox. No time to volunteer? Then please pitch in $1000, $100, or whatever you can afford. We don’t have billionaire dark money donors. We depend upon your generous support. Please give generously to support our organizing.