November 2016: Our Fight Begins

American Big Thinking Ecology Litkicks Memes New York City News Politics

I saw the Trump victory coming. I hoped with all my heart it wouldn't happen, but I've known since the day he was nominated that my beloved country had fallen prey to a sickness that would not be easily cured.

I spent election night in New York City, hoping to celebrate a Hillary Clinton win but dreading the uncertainty, and I wandered Times Square as the shock of Trump's likely victory set in. Trump is not popular in New York City, and before last night I'd never seen Times Square so filled with people and yet so desolate, so quiet, so sad.

A little after 1 am, I saw a small group of people sitting down on the long sidewalks and closed roads around 43rd Street and Broadway, as if holding a vigil or starting a new Occupy movement. Some were talking loudly, mouthing off, looking for arguments — others murmuring quietly to their friends. It made me feel good to sit there with them a few minutes, and to imagine that this was the beginning of a new sit-in, a new nonviolent protest movement. Maybe it called me back to the joyful hopes I felt five years earlier during the early weeks of the Occupy movement, which seems so far away now, though the experiences we shared in that protest uprising will surely inform us in the next protest uprising that must now begin.

A couple of days earlier, I had written an article for Pacifism21 titled "If Trump Wins, Our Fight Begins". Dear friends, dear Litkicks readers, dear good people everywhere in the world ... I don't know how we will fight back now that we have made the dumb mistake of empowering a fascist authoritarian to have control over our own lives.

But we will fight back. Women feel incredibly threatened today, and women will fight back. The LGBT community feels threatened and they will fight back. Muslims, Mexicans, Hispanics, Jews and African-Americans all feel threatened. We will all fight back together. I don't know how. But we will take guidance from the great freedom fighters of the past: Susan B. Anthony, Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King. Our fight will be a fight on nonviolent resistance. The fascist candidate won, and our fight for freedom and human dignity has begun.

While I shore up and rethink my burgeoning Pacifism21 website, Litkicks is the biggest megaphone I've got, and I'll be posting a few more times here in the next few days. I've got more to say and more to share. I think you do too. Our world changed yesterday. We're getting our shit together today, and we're beginning our organized resistance to American fascism, institutionalized racism and institutionalized abuse of women today.

I don't know where this fight will end, but I know it's going to be a long and serious fight, and I know we will never give up.

This article is part of the series Big Thinking. The previous post in the series is Big Thinking: Jung and the Electoral Map.
11 Responses to "November 2016: Our Fight Begins"

by Eamon on

You're probably right. This is the beginning.

by mnaz on

It's not really the beginning; it goes back to Rosa Parks, Selma, etc.. Maybe all the way back to the Emancipation Proclamation or even further. It's not the beginning, but it sure as hell seems like a major escalation.

by TKG on

Hi Marc.

Don't feel bad. Don't be mad.

Believe in God's love.

Believe in your Buddha nature

Believe in Christ's redemptive sacrifice

Believe in A way a lone a last a loved a long the riverrun

Believe in the circle being unbroken

Believe in the square

Believe in Mr In-Between

Don't get caught by him

Believe in astronomy, the Stars at night are a hell of a sight

Believe in life

Believe in death

All things shall pass
All is vanity

Believe the line, walk it talk it

Believe in me
Believe in you
Believe in us

Don't despair
Don't give up
Don't sit down
Don't stand up
Enunciate and pray
See it clear
No haze of hate
No anger
No fear
No animosity
Nothing's dead
Life is worth living for
Life is a gift
Life is fun

Forget what you are attached to
See new opportunity
Don't be weighted down
Don't float away

My friend, my friends, my beloved

Oh my goodness...

by Alan on

Here’s my idea. It’s very simple, as all good propaganda should be.
1. Take a clean sheet of paper and write/type the word NO in capital letters, as large as you can make it. Or write/type NO several times, as in NO NO NO NO NO NO NO, etc.
2. Take that sheet of paper and photocopy it hundreds of times.
3. Take those copies and staple, tape, paste them everywhere you go—on walls, Dumpsters, lampposts, fronts of newspaper stands, backs of city busses, next to ads for Budweiser, inside elevators, on bulletin boards, put them in your windows, everywhere.
4. That is my simple idea. A nation that says NO.

by puddintane on

Kerouac would've voted for Trump.

by Marc Eliot Stein on

Absolutely not, Puddintane. Kerouac was a Buddhist. He always emphasized the importance of "sympathy", and of sticking up for the little guy. He would never, ever have suffered a bully. He would have wanted to punch Trump in the face. It's true that he was alienated from liberals in the 60s, because he saw them as abusing their power and disrespecting American traditions. Trump abuses power and disrespects American traditions. Kerouac would have despised Trump.

by mnaz on

Right, Puddintane. Kerouac, the man who haunted jazz shacks on "Negro streets;" who lived and loved and worked among migrant Mexican agricultural laborers; who was all about transcending a stilted slow death of mind constriction in general. Sure, he would have voted for Trump, just as sure as David Duke and his ilk did. Right.

by mnaz on

I suppose one could make a case that Kerouac might have voted for Trump based on Kerouac's alleged "misogynistic" attitudes about women, but I think that would be reaching. And even if one granted this possibility, I think it would still be a case of voting against Hillary and not for Trump (Trump's misogynistic leanings aside). And frankly, in this election I think a lot of people were in this boat, voting against Hillary, or the status quo in DC in general. Really, Hillary was a weak candidate-- not at all dynamic, and too much baggage.

by kwack on

Kerouac went conservative because he was alienated (rightly or wrongly) by the aggressive chauvinism of the Liberal/Civil Rights movement. He had some good points (criticism of the Left) other points were a bit outlandish (read: conspiracy theories). He also entertained racist (read his letters after he got thumped in a black bar for trying to jitter bug) and anti-semitic sentiments (same letters. Volume 2. it's very sad reading). I think the aggressive chauvinism of the anti-Trump movement would have pushed him into the arms of the conservatives. Especially PC culture, I mean look how he's treated now for his portrayal and treatment of women (again, rightly or wrongly) and I don't see him taking too well to CULTURAL APPROPRIATION nor any attempts to censor his work or thought. I bet he would have supported a guy like Trump (he supported Joe McCarthy) but he probably wouldn't have voted either way. Anyway, he didn't like to be 'used', so he probably wouldn't like to have his name associated with any candidate or movement. God, I wish he was with us and sober.

by Jason Carman on

My. It's good to post here again. Too bad it is about Trump.

I'm terrified my nation has given both blindly and happily into authoritarianism. I feel the eye upon me.

Nevertheless I am trying to be heard.

I love the NO idea. That should happen. But where do we really fight the fight? With each other. Resist when others do not this idea that we are divided and have no say. Make the noise that refuses racist appointments and the lack of investigation of foreign tampering and the like with everyone you meet who drops the ball, gives in, has no doubt they have no say, is defeated--terrified.

Growl your poetry, but tell your co-workers, lovers, friends, strangers you meet, the facts of the matter in simple terms when they repeat the propaganda put out by the very people who are becoming Trump's cabinet.

Do not let your liberties wither one bit, one second--That is how they are taken.

by michael.norris on

I am writing my congressmen, congresswomen and all other influential democrats to among other things force the resignation of Steve Bannon and filibuster any Trump nominee to the Supreme Court. The minute Trump cynically put forth Bannon as his chief adviser, the time to "give Trump a chance" is dead. The Democrats have had eight long years of obstruction by the right. Hopefully they learned a thing or two. This is not about a peaceful transition. This is about protecting our American republic. Remember, the day after Obama was elected the Tea Party was born, and the republicans vowed to obstruct every item on Obama's agenda. Now is the time to start working on defeating the right in the 2018 mid-term elections

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