And how is it we've begun? With resistance and the organizing of resistance. To quote Rebecca Solnit's report on the first week in the Guardian:
The word resistance is everywhere. Former labor secretary Robert Reich gives a daily address on Facebook Live called the Resistance Report. The group 18millionrising.org, which represents Asian and Pacific islanders in the US, has launched a “100 Days of Resistance” campaign. The Working Families party reports that on Tuesday more than 10,000 people went to congressional offices to protest against Trump. Climate and human rights groups launched Unstoppabletogether.org to link human rights, racial and environmental justice. Greenpeace hung a gigantic banner off a crane next to the White House: it said “Resist”. Organizers tell me that hordes of people who have never been active before are looking for ways to plug in. People whose immigration status, religion or healthcare needs mean they may be directly threatened are terrified, and in many cases mobilized.For me, the picture of the US today is one of dawning hope. Congress has been chipping away at us for years, doing incremental damage that many people either did not recognize or simply stomached in silence. The sitting PotUS, in all his unhinged, ill-informed, self-deceiving outbursts, puts a single face on the demand for privilege in all its possible manifestations, visible as it's never been visible before. Maybe 34% of the US public is in accord with his sentiments, but that's as much support as he's going to get. The rest of us know we don't want to live in his reality. I hear that Orwell's 1984 is selling like hotcakes. May I suggest a more heartening choice of reading, one that refuses despair and has a more realistic view of change and possibility? Rebecca Solnit wrote Hope in the Dark back in the chill, gray days following the 2004 election. In it she notes how quickly resistance to power is forgotten, how insistently power crafts narratives that obliterate how often and significantly resistance brings about change. Change begins first in the imagination. And I don't mean in Orwell's imagination, either.