On the night of 8 November, 2016, in the wake of the stunning election of Donald John Trump to the presidency of the United States, an idea was started by a Facebook post and grew from there to proportions hitherto unheard of.  The idea?  A march, to react to the new presidency and insist on a maintenance of rights, for women, for LGBTQ folks, immigrants, legal or not, in short for anyone who stands to be minimized at least or injured at worst by the new administration.

Two and a half months later, on 20 January, 2017, Donald Trump was sworn in as President of the United States, certainly a significant moment.  The day after, however, was no less so.  On that Saturday, the idea of a march came to fruition with a vengeance, as a crowd of women and men descended on the Mall, the likes of which hasn’t been seen in a very long while, if ever.  Signs abounded, expressing support for women, for blacks, for the LGBTQ community, for blacks, for immigrants who may be in the US under less than ideal legal conditions, in short: for those people who see themselves in a problematical relationship with the new chief executive.  Many of the crowd wore pink stocking caps, joyfully dubbed “pussy hats,” a defiant declaration against a recent suggestion by a certain orange Neanderthal that being unceremoniously grabbed not only would be a non-starter but would be affirmatively and vigorously resisted.  Speakers, from Gloria Steinem to Madonna to Tammy Duckworth, addressed and encouraged the crowd to stand up and assert themselves against what they rightly see as a potentially dangerous transition in American history.

Doubtless you have heard about the “sister marches” which spawned from the Washington, DC event.  There were quite a few of them, including:

 

New York City, NY

Chicago, IL

Boston, MA

Seattle, WA

Phoenix, AZ

Los Angeles, CA

Austin, TX

Denver, CO

Philadelphia, PA

Park City, UT

Trenton, NJ

Atlanta, GA

 

And the activities were hardly limited to the United States.  Similar rallies, some of them sizeable, sprung up in:

 

Berlin, Germany

London, England

Melbourne, Australia

Brussels, Belgium

Wellington, NZ

Durban, South Africa

Sydney, Australia

Madrid, Spain

Barcelona, Spain

Helsinki, Finland

Belgrade, Serbia

New Delhi, India

Ahmedabad, India

Kolkata, India

Rome, Italy

Marcelle, France

Accra, Ghana

Budapest, Hungary

Paris, France

Amsterdam, Holland

Lisbon, Portugal

Warsaw, Poland

Prague, Czech Rep.

Santiago, Chile

Ottawa, Ontario

Mexico City, Mexico

Macau

Tel Aviv, Israel

Brasilia, Brazil

Athens, Greece

Buenos Aires, Arg.

Sofia, Bulgaria

 

And even onboard a research ship near Paradise Bay, Antarctica.  Estimates for attendance at the DC march are unofficial and vague at best, but there is wide agreement that the crowd vastly exceeded the half-million expected.  The total participation worldwide, excluding Washington, run into the millions, marking this as an unprecedented event, not just in American history, but in the history of the planet.  If there has ever been another such organized, coordinated effort in human history, I am not aware of it.

All of this happened because of a transfer of power in the United States which apparently has a great number of people concerned … and from where I sit, properly so.  More than once I have wondered at the level of social activism and civil disobedience which would be necessary to get The Donald to sit up and take notice.  The one tweet he issued regarding the march sounded disturbingly dismissive, as he wondered if the participants voted.  Doubtless they did, just not for him.

This isn’t over, either.  An immigrants’ march and a scientists’ march are currently being organized and other similar actions by other groups pending.  Reactions to the president’s cabinet nominations and to his choice of Neil Gorsuch as the next Supreme Court justice have been swift and uncompromising.  Yet Donald Trump apparently cannot be bothered to at least attempt to communicate substantially with or acknowledge the opposition and their discontent.  Possibly he thinks the election settled the matter.

It did not … and we’re not done by a long shot.

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Comment by eric stone on February 8, 2017 at 1:59pm

One important fact that we are forgetting: our economic impact.  We atheists tend to make more money than the religious right.  We should do a little more  spending.  I use Amazon frequently but I have just heard that they are continuing to do business with Trump's businesses.  We should boycott them until they cease and desist, No?

Comment by eric stone on February 8, 2017 at 1:53pm

Just read this on Daily-Kos about how McConnell tried to use a little known senate censure rule to try to silence Elizabeth Warren. The man is a disgusting fascist. Please share.

Share this article
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell silenced Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) on the Senate floor in the debate over the nomination of Jeff Sessions to be attorney general. Warren was reading a portion of Coretta Scott King's letter to the Judiciary Committee from 1986, when Sessions was up for a federal judgeship, which he was denied because he was too much of a goddamned racist.
Warren responded to McConnell’s objection incredulously: "Mr. President, I am surprised that the words of Coretta Scott King are not suitable for debate in the United States senate. I ask leave of the senate to continue my remarks." "Object."
As if trying to shut up Warren will work:
McConnell is using Senate Rule 19 against Warren, a rarely used means of censuring—and trying to silence—a colleague. The rule says senators are not allowed to “directly or indirectly, by any form of words impute to another Senator or to other Senators any conduct or motive unworthy or unbecoming a Senator." She was reading someone else's words at the time, in fact not just Scott King's, but also the late Sen. Ted Kennedy, quoting his statement that "referred to Sessions as a 'throwback to a shameful era' and a 'disgrace' to the Justice Department."
Stupid move, McConnell. You take on one the lightening rods of the resistance—Elizabeth Warren? And Coretta Scott King? Over the nomination of this "throwback to a shameful era"? You will rue this day. And you are reminding the whole world that Scott King says Sessions is a racist. Let's just put the words that McConnell is trying to suppress out there again, where everyone can see them.
I write to express my sincere opposition to the confirmation of Jefferson B. Sessions as a federal disctrict court judge for the Southern District of Alabama. My professional and personal roots in Alabama are deep and lasting. Anyone who has used the power of his office as United States Attorney to intimidate and chill the free exercise of the ballot by citizens should not be elevated to our courts. Mr. Sessions has used the awesome powers of his offie in a shabby attempt to intimidate and frighten elderly black voters. For this reprehensible conduct, he should not be rewarded with a federal judgeship.

I regret that a long-standing commitment prevents me from appearing in person to testify against this nominee. However, I have attached a copy of my statement opposing Mr. Sessions confirmation and I request that my statement as well as this letter be made a party of the hearing record.
I do sincerely urge you to oppose the confirmation of Mr. Sessions.
Sincerely, Coretta Scott King
How about we let McConnell know how we feel about this? Here are his D.C. and Kentucky office numbers:
• (202) 224-2541
• (270) 781-1673
• (502) 582-6304
• (859) 224-8286
• (606) 864-2026
• (859) 578-0188
• (270) 442-4554

Comment by Loren Miller on February 5, 2017 at 9:53am

@ k.h. That's what Dan Rather suggested, and I'm in 100% agreement with him.

@ Compelled Drumpf seems to think he can act autonomously in all instances, that he is near an autarch in position rather than a president.  He is, of course, badly mistaken in this assumption, and the more he tries to press that opinion, the closer he brings himself to impeachment proceedings.  It's possible that Drumpf got at least a part of this notion from the fact that the GOP holds both houses of Congress and, potentially with Gorsuch on the Supreme Court, sway in the Judicial branch as well, and that all may be true.

The problem remains the American people.  This presidency is starting out with the lowest approval ratings in the poll's history, which dates back to Eisenhower's first term.  In addition, no one on the Democratic side of the aisle has forgotten that Drumpf came to office with a minority of the popular vote and an electoral victory which in no way, shape, or form resembles justification for claiming a mandate.  Yet as you observe, he thinks he can adopt a "take it or leave it" attitude in his decision-making process.

Yet the biggest wake-up call coming to him is less about the above than it is the nature of the position he has arrived at.  The US government is not a business, but a service.  Its job, whether Drumpf knows it or not, is NOT to make a profit, enhance his status, or play to his ego but "to establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity."  That message has been lost with the sizzle of the campaign and Drumpf's own swagger and insistence on his own importance.  He keeps on talking about supporting the "little people," yet I wonder how many such people feel stepped on in his first two weeks in office and how many more will join them in their feelings in the weeks and months to come.

As I have said before, Drumpf got into this business not recognizing what the job entailed.  To date, I remain convinced that he still doesn't really have a grasp on it ... and he is in for one hell of a shock when the realization finally dawns.

Comment by Compelledunbeliever on February 5, 2017 at 6:16am

One great problem we face with Trump is he does not seem to have the attitude that he is a representative of the people or has certain "mandates" as Presidents in the past. He does not seem to feel accountable to the people.
Instead he seems to have a Corporate executive attitude that he has been brought in to fix a failed corporation. Thus his only mandate is to do and change things however he( in his great wisdom) sees fit. He does not need to listen to anyone else or take advice(as he sees it) because the establishment were the ones to screw things up. It is a very different outlook on the Presidency. " Its my way or the highway" is not something that Americans may be prepared for not is it likely to be productive or beneficial for our nation as a whole.As a.cooperate executive he really does have a top down outlook on running an organization as opposed to being accountable to constituents as normal politicians do.

Comment by k.h. ky on February 4, 2017 at 10:56pm
Why not just call a lie a lie :(
Comment by k.h. ky on February 4, 2017 at 6:48pm
But, but, LOREN I was at the bowling green massacre!
There were thousands, maybe, hundreds of thousands of Muslims cheering from the rooftops. Lol
Comment by Loren Miller on February 4, 2017 at 6:25pm

The thing is, too, that the parade of massive faux pas not only hasn't stopped but may be accelerating, whether it's Conway's reference to a non-existent "Bowling Green massacre" or Drumpf's insistence that the stay of the "Muslim ban" will be overturned.  At some point or other, I fully expect a full-bore, head-on collision between Donnie and the Constitution.

And I don't expect it to be pretty.

Comment by The Flying Atheist on February 4, 2017 at 4:06pm

You're right, Kathy.  I also heard there were many other marches held in small cities and towns, not just the major population centers.  

There definitely is a momentum to these protests.

Here in Chicago we have the following event planned:  Mass Mooning Planned For Chicago Trump Tower.  It's also being reported in the major media:  ABC News Chicago.  This is the type of event that is ripe to be reported on the national nightly news.  Let's hope so!  

Comment by k.h. ky on February 4, 2017 at 3:51pm
At last I'm seeing a glimmer of hope.
Comment by The Flying Atheist on February 4, 2017 at 3:38pm

Trump is behaving like the typical corporate executive who lives in an ivory tower and is generally inaccessible to lowly subordinates and the media.  That's why during the few times he has met with the media he has threatened to suspend their access if he's uncomfortable with their questions and scrutiny.  He has also passed that talking point to his inner circle.  He feels he has no obligation to be a democratic "people's president" or to be challenged by opposing views.  He hides behind his Twitter account because he's too afraid to face the public.  Pathetic.   

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