Just under five million people, the vast majority of whom were women, marched in cities and towns, not just across America, but worldwide. Their demands were many but, in essence, that US President Donald Trump goes. The numbers – only one day after Trump’s inauguration’s speech, so full of deceits – were unprecedented.
In Washington, photos of the demonstrators showed they vastly outnumbered those who attended the inauguration ceremony. But this was no ordinary demonstration. It was the beginning of a worldwide revolt against the reactionary values that Trump exemplifies.
Riots and more riots
A continuum of resistance
Women have a long history of fighting fascism, patriarchy and authoritarian tendencies.
In 1936 women in Catalonia (Spain) were at the forefront of the social revolution. They were known as Mujeres Libres – Free Women. They were armed and fought bravely against the forces of Franco.
More recently, the women of Rojava, Rojava, the Kurdistan region of northern Syria, have hit hard at Daesh (Isis, Isil). Their battalions – the YPJ (women’s arm of the Peoples Protection Units), together with their male equivalent, the YPG – have been and still are at the frontline fighting Daesh.
Trump: clear and present danger
Trump, represents all that is reactionary and despicable: his racism, sexism, misogyny, poking fun at the disabled, and on top of that is a climate change denier. He has already signed away universal healthcare provision within hours of taking office.
Or as The Intercept put it:
The White House is now in the hands of a pathological liar and megalomaniac, a mutation spawned of our celebrity culture, a thin-skinned authoritarian whose only real constituent is himself, and whose intentions, to the extent we can discern them, are to destroy a lot of the things that make this country (truly) great.
In short, Trump is a clear and present danger to not only America, but to the world and to progressive values everywhere.
A flawed system
And to those who say his foreign policies, particularly his affinity with Russian president Putin, will see world peace, consider this… Isolationism can be just as dangerous as military intervention, if not more so, for it allows dictators and oppressive regimes to thrive. Indeed, there are already comparisons made between Trump and the Middle East autocrats he so admires, such as President Erdogan of Turkey and President Sisi of Egypt.
Meanwhile, Trump and Putin are intent on carving the world up into mutually agreed spheres of influence – the old ‘power blocs’. This would allow Putin to achieve his imperialistic goals, and Trump to push for even more wealth for the US wealthy.
The American democratic model that saw the grotesque contest between the corrupt Washington political establishment of Clinton and the equally corrupt capitalist elite of Trump, is fatally flawed. Indeed, that model has never been about democracy, but is an insult to democracy and intelligence.
The disenchanted and dispossessed of America will not find a saviour in Trump, or any other political demagogue. Their salvation, their future, lies in themselves.
Trump must go, the sooner the better. If not by impeachment, then by uprising.
Americans must find their revolutionary soul again. The America of the IWW (Industrial Workers of the World), of Joe Hill, of Sacco and Vanzetti, of Emma Goldman, of the Haymarket Martyrs, of the SDS (Students for a Democratic Society) and ‘The Movement’. And millions of others who over the centuries resisted oppression.
Marches and rioting can only be the beginning. Industrial strikes, leading to a permanent blockade of the White House until Trump goes, must be the next objective. To fail may mean years if not decades of regressive policies, hate and division.
The fightback – the resistance – begins now.
Or as Bob Dylan once said: “You don’t need a Weatherman to know which way the wind blows”.