Each week, LA Progressive’s editors pick what they regard as a particularly insightful comment from one of our readers, both to draw attention to one particular reader’s thoughts and to encourage more readers to weigh in with their opinions. This week’s pithy "Feedback Friday" response comes from Harvey Bernstein, who commented on the article by Richard Greeman, "As Macron Prepares New Repressive Measures Yellow Vests and Red Unions Strike Together.
Like you, I’m proud that women, people of color, and committed progressives have led the political uprising to resist the racism, the slide toward authoritarianism, the lies and the assault on women’s rights, on the environment, on the free press, on democracy. But authoritarians don’t give up power. And are we ready for an even more threatening attack : the pardoning of Manafort; or the assassination of Manafort; a drummed up war to divert from crimes; the firing of Mueller; the death and replacement of Ruth Bader Ginsberg; pardoning Roger Stone?
We need a more effective non-violent tool to combat the desperate next step of Trump and his supporters.
We must not wait another two years on the assumption that right-wingers will allow themselves to be voted out of office.
We must not wait another two years on the assumption that right-wingers will allow themselves to be voted out of office. Nor even until the next Jan. 20th march(which each year loses numbers and impact) while voter suppression intensifies. Women and their supporters need to warn that they have a new non-violent means to stop the assault on them and on democracy. And it only takes one day to deliver the message.
THIS IS HOW IT WORKS: 4 women/men step out onto the “boulevard” at 7:45 in the morning. 3 of us station ourselves about 100 yards apart-facing the traffic and holding the 45 impeach sign. (No drama or theatrical waving/shouting needed) The 4th person standing another 100 yards further back down the boulevard holds the cardboard clock with movable hands. She moves the hand up to the 45 minute mark. Take an amateur video of the reaction of the pedestrians and the drivers. Next day—post it online in social media.
The goal is to teach everyone—women….and men that that there is a non-violent way to protest immediately, without cost, in place…..wherever there is a gathering. Whenever they see 45 on the clock. Speak impeach. Or honk. Whenever that protest is needed. (Whenever and wherever that protest may be needed). Because it will be needed.
This plan is not my idea. I heard this plan from someone who heard it from a couple of young women who had heard it from someone else. But no one has yet done it. No group need to sponsor it, but instead just say that a few of its members are participating and then ask for a few like-minded women…..and men to participate. Non-violent only. Women and men can show that what has happened in France to confront the government, can happen here without violence. During rush-hours, in the stadiums.
Of course, like Stone Soup, this works better if you have 4 other women or men on the opposite side of the “boulevard” ….. and are out there (still only for one day) but also at 8:45 AM, 4:45PM, and 5:45PM. As traffic goes both to and from work. And, of course, this works even better if there are 4 more participants a mile up the road. The “boulevard” is long and diverse. There are other progressive groups and members of congregations all along the miles of boulevard who are ready to participate and many who have already been tipped off to this idea. (this is why Trump has been referring to the “angry Democratic mob”. He knows that he has no defense for that kind of non-violent resistance)
As an experienced criminal prosecutor I can attest that he should be impeached—if only to keep him from pardoning more racist criminals. But this is not really about impeachment. It is about sending a warning that we have only begun to defend democracy and our rights and the rights of all. When the clock shows 45—Speak: Impeach. Honk—Impeach.