From the publisher … Holding on, and being ready

The Trump Train has left the station, and the trip is not gonna be pretty.

Yesterday (4/7/17) came the news of 59 Tomahawk missiles launched into Syria, and the confirmation of Neil M. Gorsuch to the Supreme Court, bypassing the 60 vote requirement. Today we had Jacksonville police allowing a disruptive agitator to continually provoke a peaceful protest, then, when the agitator succeeded in provoking someone, cops jumped in and arrested six people.

We as a society have lost the skill and patience of diplomacy and negotiation. The people who think in terms of winning instead of cooperation have seized the controls and we are steaming down the tracks.

Writing this Publisher’s Note—as the reality of Trump’s win becomes less a shock than just a horror that is here to stay—finds me in a rhetorical trap.

I think of saying things I  have already said, about not burning yourself out, of picking issues to work on that directly concern your life, about not trying to do it all, about not giving up hope. I have great gratitude to all who have stepped up in the resistance. But that is not everyone.

Many people (some still paying attention to what’s going on) and others (paying less attention because it seems so overwhelming), are rightly busy just continuing with their lives, whether working, studying (or working AND studying), dealing with family or health issues, to have changed much of the pattern of their lives. That’s fine, it will be a long haul of recovery. Just please pay attention and do what you can.

That said, the resistance in Gainesville seems to be alive, especially as is true everywhere else, powered by women; younger women with a challenged future laying ahead of them, and older women who are getting back into action after a downtime with other responsibilities, family or otherwise.

When Lynn Jamieson submitted the article we ran last month on the solar energy workshop, she said, “I haven’t done anything like this in 30 years.” Exactly. The Women’s March and the Women’s Strike were important in elevating a consciousness of power, and as well, the hope is for men to understand and support that work, and get with the program themselves. It will be years of struggle, as I said last month, to “resist, reclaim and move forward,” but that is where we are at.

Kudos to Alachua County Sheriff Sadie Darnell for refusing to cooperate with the Trump administration’s call for detaining non-citizens who have been arrested for scrutiny by immigration officials. It is an action which netted our county a reprimand from Washington, but it was an illegal request and her leadership on this probably led to other sheriffs around the state also resisting.

But then there is the situation of Ali Jamoos, a Palestinian UF junior agriculture student with a stellar reputation who went on a Spring Break cruise to Mexico only to be detained in Miami upon his return, turned over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement,  jailed and prepared for deportation We may live in a vibrant Blue Dot, but one of our own just got snatched away. Is this how it starts?  A couple good friends are friends of his. To me that make him a friend too. An online GoFundMe raised thousands of dollars for his defense, which is nice, but it did not free him — he is still awaiting deportation. This is not acceptable. This must not be normalized.

2018 will be our next chance to affect the power structure by trying to retake Congress.  Voter suppression must be ended, and restitution of voting rights is a key to this. All this bluster about Russian interference is nonsense. A heck a lot of what was “leaked” was true but inconvenient stuff. Women are stepping up, scientists are stepping up. I think a fair amount of Trump voters are going to be open to a change in direction, too.

Opportunities will come, we need to be ready.

Comments are closed.