I didn’t send any Thank You Thursdays this week. I’ve been too distracted, enthralled, and mesmerized by the James Comey hearing! (Sidenote: If you haven’t read his opening statement, it really is worth a read. It’s terribly entertaining and well-written. Click here.)
Some of you comrades seem to be down in the dumps and pessimistic about all the chaos and drama. Don’t be! I’ve found that if I step way back and take a very big picture view of it all, there’s a lot about the turmoil that is hopeful. Yesterday, I came across this rambling and inspirting post from some people I don’t know. I’ve edited and cleaned it up a bit. But full credit goes to: Rebecca Solnit, Annabel Park and Bob Fulkerson
Post from Facebook:
You know, it’s a truly frenzied roller-coaster of a time, and I understand that it is making a lot of people dizzy and sick and the change fell out of a lot of peoples’ pockets. But it’s also pretty amazing. This morning the president got nailed as a liar and obstructor of justice while the whole world watched. A bunch of Mormon women are actively working on behalf of undocumented immigrants (and some have changed party affiliation). Indivisible’s 6000+ chapters are building the foundation for big change in the midterms. The world is uniting to move forward on climate change without the US federal government; inside the USA, states and cities, 279 cities representing almost 60 million people at last count, are also going along with the Paris accords. France elected a climate-conscious guy. The United Kingdom is rejecting the Tories [update: Corbyn called on May to resign]. The judiciary system keeps rejecting the Muslim ban and a number of Republican voter-suppression and gerrymandering schemes have been overturned. A lot of government employees are quietly acting on principle.
Kamala Harris, the second black woman ever in the Senate, is laying the groundwork for going after Jeff Sessions, who’s caught in his lies, as is Jared Kushner. Whatever you think of the Democratic Party as a whole, a bunch of them are doing good work right now. Nevada sent the first Latina senator ever to the pallid senate, and Catherine Cortez Masto is standing up for everything from reproductive rights to public land. Maxine Waters isn’t a queen; she’s an empress right now, speaking so much fierce truth to so much corrupt power (and nudging giant white boys outta her way with panache). Elizabeth Warren–well, she persists with strength. There are some real heroes out there. People who are in the limelight and everyday people doing their work quietly. People who see the old suffering that was already there–my amazing cousin in her nineties just wrote me about bringing kits of kindness to kids in the L.A. foster care system. People who are trying to ameliorate and eliminate the new suffering.
And it’s turning out to be not as much fun to be right wing as they thought it would be. They haven’t yet destroyed the Affordable Care Act and they’re finding out just how unpopular trying to do that is. Senator Al Franken says Republicans are scared, caught in a lot of dilemmas, and with today’s extraordinary hearings, they may be more so, not sure how to align themselves with a crumbling administration. Jared Kushner is in hot water. There are about seven investigations into this Russian/collusion business, and we don’t have to waste time on people who think it’s imaginary any more. Creepy congressman Jason Chaffetz saw the writing on the wall and quit, and a bunch of Republicans are on the lam from their constituents, afraid of being held accountable, afraid of democracy.
Meanwhile in right-wing media, Bill O’Reilly was forced out. Hannity lost a ton of his advertisers when his bullshit about Seth Rich fell on his own head (that’s what it’s like on rollercoasters). Roger Ailes died in disgrace after being forced out by a bunch of women supporting each other in testifying that he was a grotesque monster and Fox was a gulag-brothel. Breitbart has lost 90% of its ad revenue thanks to brilliant activism. Trump and his son got caught siphoning off money meant for children with cancer this epic week. What the Republicans once managed to at least hide under drapery is out in all its squalid nakedness now: the lies are naked, the cruelty is naked, and the destructiveness is naked. That’s helpful; we’re done having to make the case that they serve the 1% and don’t give a damn about the planet, or the poor, or most of us. It’s all clear in this moment.
This is a historic moment. I keep hearing people predict the future, often glumly, with the false certainty that is pernicious to any real engagement. Here’s what you have to remember. The future is not written; it’s ours to make, but if we do nothing we will get nothing or worse than nothing. In this moment of utter turmoil, civil society must be the counter to a rogue administration. A crisis, says one dictionary, is “the point in the progress of a disease when a change takes place which is decisive of recovery or death.”
Together we have the power to shape the future; together we are more than a counterweight to the crumbling power of the Trump administration that fails to understand the nature of power. I see a lot of beauty in the principle and the passion of the people around me and beyond right now; I see a citizenry (and that means everyone who lives here whatever their status) rising up. I don’t see the future, but I see extraordinary possibilities.
By Rebecca Solnik, Annabel Park and Bob Fulkerson