This week’s belated post comes in two parts. The first part is a summary of the fallout from, and amazing activism inspired by, the Charlottesville home grown terrorist event and the administration’s inadequate and inappropriate response to it. It has been difficult keeping up with the tsunami like wave of condemnation and actions and I am sure I missed many but I am listing some of the big ones.
Part Two is all the other good things that happened because I don’t want them to get drowned out in the tsunami because we are fighting this war on so many fronts.
PART ONE –
THERE WERE THE PROTESTS AND OTHER AWESOME FORMS OF ACTIVISM – FIRST, Thank you to the thousands upon thousands of brave and loving people who came out in solidarity rallies in city after city and of course those at Trump Tower and Bedminster. The good people of Charlottesville came out by the thousands for a candlelight vigil at UVA. And as the NY Daily News describes it “plenty of fire and fury” greeted 45 along Fifth Ave. in Manhattan when he made his first visit home since he took office. Days after activists toppled a statue in North Carolina, hundreds of residents lined up at the jail to turn themselves in for the crime in support of three activists who were arrested for the removal.
THE DEFECTION BY CORPORATE AMERICA – CEO’s began to drop like flies from associating with 45. The first to resign from the president’s American Manufacturing Council in protest was the CEO of Merck. Then came the CEO’s of Intel, Under Armour the president of the Alliance for American Manufacturing, and the AFL-CIO. As the resignations grew, the remaining members of the council decided to disband, and then the administration decided to disband the council. Then came the disbanding of the planned Advisory Council on Infrastructure, before it could even start. Billionaire Carl Icahn then stepped down as a special adviser to the president on regulatory reform.
TELEVISION, MOVIES AND OTHER ARTS ABANDON TOO – All 17 members of the President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities resigned saying “We cannot sit idly by, the way that your West Wing advisors have, without speaking out against your words and actions. Ignoring your hateful rhetoric would have made us complicit in your words and actions” At the end of the letter, the members call on him to resign if his values do not align against white “supremacy, discrimination and vitriol,” and the first letter of each paragraph throughout the letter spell out RESIST. After at least two honorees said they would not attend, 45 announced that he would not be appearing at this year’s Kennedy Center Honors.
THE REMOVAL AND PROPOSED REMOVAL OF CONFEDERATE MONUMENTS – The number of confederate monuments being removed around the country grow by the minute and The New York Times is keeping an updated list. Some of the early ones to announce they were seeking to remove statues were Jacksonville Florida, Lexington, Kentucky, and Baltimore, Maryland. Protesters in Durham, North Carolina, decided not to wait on the government and found the courage and strength to topple a Confederate Monument on their own. In the dead of night, Baltimore removed 4 confederate statues from public spaces Baltimore and activists placed a statue stylized as “lady liberty of black power” in its location. An Arizona monument dedicated to Jefferson Davis, was tarred and feathered. The Maryland State House Trust voted in favor of removing the statue of Taney, who was the author of the Dred Scott decision that upheld slavery, which was then removed immediately afterwards. Six Flags amusement parks announced they would no longer fly the Confederate Flag as one of its six flags.
THE CANCELLATION OF OTHER PLANNED RACIST/NAZI EVENTS- Texas A&M University cancelled an upcoming white supremacist rally on its campus, citing concerns of a “major security risk” and was also probably influenced by the bipartisan pressure from the Texas’ Legislature. A white nationalist organizer tried to hold a press conference in Charlottesville but was chased away and drowned out by hundreds of protesters. White Nationalists called off a protest at GOOGLE. The very small “Free Speech” rally in Boston disbanded quickly when upwards of 40,000 counter protesters showed up.The mayor of Phoenix called on the Racist in Chief to cancel a planned rally in the city saying it is not welcome at this time.
THE CONDEMNATION FROM HIGH RANKING REPUBLICANS AND OTHER CONSERVATIVES – Five of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff from The Navy, Marines, Army, Air Force, and the National Guard all denounced white supremacy and racism in rare public statements on national politics.Former Presidents H.W. Bush and W. Bush issued a joint statement, condemning “racial bigotry, anti-Semitism, and hatred in all forms.” Paul Ryan, and Senators John McCain, Jeff Flake, Orrin Hatch, and so many other members of Congress denounced 45’s response. And the strongest of all was Senator Corker who said “The President has not yet been able to demonstrate the stability nor some of the competence that he needs to demonstrate in order to be successful, some even questioning his competence to govern.”
DONATIONS TO GOOD CAUSES – Arnold Schwarzenegger donated $100,000 to the Simon Wiesenthal Center a Los Angeles-based group fighting hate and Twenty-First Century Fox Inc. CEO said he was donating $1 million dollars to the Anti-Defamation League to “stand up to the nazis” after ripping the racist-in-chief response.
CONSEQUENCES FOR INDIVIDUAL HATE GROUP MEMBERS – To name just a few, the president of Washington State University’s College Republicans was forced to resign for attending the nazi rally in Charlottesville after the College Republican National Committee condemned his participation. The Doña Ana County Republican Party chairman resigned after posting support for the Charlotteville killing of a counter-protester on the county party’s Facebook page. Another white supremacist who attended was fired by Top Dog, a fast-food restaurant in California after discovering his participation on social media. @YesYoureRacist is trying to publicly identify all those who attend the hate rallies.
TECHNOLOGY AND SOCIAL MEDIA STEP UP TO BLOCK THE HATE – Many companies are banning hate groups from using their services, including Apple, Google, PayPal, MasterCard, Spotify, GoDaddy, WordPress, Squarespace, OKCupid, GoFundMe, and Facebook.The white supremacist site the Daily Stormer was booted first from GoDaddy, then Google, and then Russia’s domain RU-CENTER, all in the past week. You have to be pretty low for Russia to boot you?
TRUMP PROPERTIES TAKE A BIG HIT TOO – After activists spent months of trying to get non-profits to stop holding their fundraisers at Trump properties through boycotts and emailing campaigns organized by grabyourwallet.org to no avail, we finally found their line in the sand – nazis and their killing of innocent people. At last count there were at least nine charities cancelling galas at Mar-A-Lago, which started with The Cleveland Clinic, the American Cancer Society and American Friends of Magen David Adom American Red Cross, followed by The Salvation Army and Susan G. Komen have. It will be the first time in at least eight years that some of these charities have not had an event at a Trump Property.
You can read Part Two here.