I have been reading a large number of people who planned to join the million women march on Facebook. I am also now reading a number of posts from people who apparently are believing that Donald Trump can really close off the different monuments in Washington DC for long periods of time around the inauguration, before and behind.
Folks, Donald Trump does not have the authority to do that. Nor do the police, the National Guard, nor would the National Park Service. But I wouldn’t even ask for a protest permit.
What I am trying to tell you is that if thousands and thousands of you show up, they are going to have a very difficult time trying to arrest the whole lot of you – there is power in numbers, as I hope a lot of you have learned since the faux elections. And if you see one person being arrested, then instead of running away screaming, just SIT DOWN, right where you stand. At this point, whoever is trying to keep order, and keep you away, are just going to say there are too many – we cannot do anything (unless, of course, someone is found with a gun).
I was twenty years old in December of 1960. I turned 30 in December of 1970. So I literally spent my whole decade of my 20s during the 60s. And I saw a lot of stuff.
I saw a beloved president murdered. I saw the music revolution brought about by the Beatles and MoTown and the psychedelic musicians. I saw a lot of protesters too. They were not afraid of going to jail for standing up for their rights – not to go to Vietnam, and equal rights for every human being. I don’t think anyone thought they would die during a peaceful protest. Certainly not that young man at Kent State, in 1970.
But the majority of those peaceful protestors stood their grounds for something they believed. No running and screaming from any one person who thinks he is god and Solomon and king and dictator.
However, if you see anyone harassing someone near you, just SIT DOWN. I remember seeing the young peaceful protestors being carried out with a policeman at his/her arms and another one at his/her feet. Anyone is going to be cowed by numbers. Even Trump would be afraid if he was facing thousands of people who simply don’t like him, or want him in the president’s seat. Will he bring on his own personal army to take you on? I suppose it is possible, but remember, if there are thousands of you there, you can, in numbers, overwhelm them. Still, I would just sit down, and force them to decide if attacking me is a smart thing to do. I should think it would just cause more of us to stand up to him. Isn’t that what happened when the Kent State student was killed by a trigger-happy national guardsman.
I guess it is up to you to decide if you are so adamant about your rights that you would be willing to get killed, knowing it is a thing that is not likely to happen. Are they going to stand back and start shooting into the crowd, and hope a shooter can not be identified? Or are you going to be scared away by a single man’s bluster?
Peaceful protest is still the strongest way to defeat this man. Standing up in numbers against him, publicly, is the best way to defeat him.
I have heard of people getting death threats, and I am sorry for you. But a death threat is not going to stop me from standing for my rights. Or sitting for my rights.
Be honest with yourself. Are you willing to live under the dictatorship a Trump presidency will bring you? Are you willing to ignore all the illegal things he is guilty of. By rights, he is not eligible for the presidency. By my beloved Constitution, he is not eligible for the presidency. Are the other countries who live under the dictatorships in their own homes happy about their lives? How did they get there, other than refusing to fight for their rights, and running scared enough to lose everything?
Don’t leave it to the “other” guy to do something. If you are afraid of being the only one willing to speak out, s/he may be just as afraid as you are. Join him/her. One turns to two, then two can turn to four, then four can turn to eight, and before you know it, you will have hundreds willing to take the same risk, and after that it will grow into thousands before you know it.
Just do it. Because if you don’t, you and your friends may find yourselves standing in lines begging for bread, or sitting inside glumly because you are afraid to go outside.
Carol Stepp, Austin