The Time To Protest Trump Is Now.

The response to anti-Trump protestors that goes, “Why didn’t they vote?” is bullshit.

First of all, any number of them did vote.

Secondly, democracy doesn’t only happen on election day. It happens year round.

Thirdly, though I find proud non-voters and third party voters infuriating, I would rather encourage them when they do what I agree with (e.g., use the other channels of democratic influence) than try to guilt them into compounding their self-disenfranchisement even further. We can argue about their other civic responsibilities when they’re relevant again.

Fourthly, as vital and irreplaceable as votes are, people who persuade others’ votes (including elected officials’ votes) influence a given election, and any number of aspects of our eventual governance, more than someone who only registers their one vote but influences no one else.

Fifthly, Trump needs to be stopped and to get the numbers to accomplish that, we don’t need purity tests on whose support and efforts we’ll accept.

Sixthly, the world is watching and it’s vital to global perception that Trump not be seen as univocally representing the American people with all his dangerous bluster. We need to be visible in the streets conveying that this nation is not complacent about the threat to stability at the top.

As long as they’re moral, as long as they uphold democratic institutions rather than undermine them, as long as they’re civil and non-violent, and as long as they’re against Trump, I’m not criticizing them for speaking their mind, protesting against what Trump represents, and showing solidarity with those who are marginalized.

The idea that we must “give Trump a chance” is simply a joke. He has already crossed lines that are disqualifying for a leader of the United States of America. There is no trusting him at this point. Obstructing him is not rooting against America. It’s rooting for America. We should be actively pressuring him to compromise with us so that what he does can actually benefit America (or, at least, harm it less badly than his rhetoric promises). He has openly and explicitly declared his authoritarian view of how power is to be wielded. Sending a message to a would-be autocrat that he will be obstructed if he tries anything that violates the rights of the people is asserting our rights to retain our democratic republic and not descend into the madness of despotism that he’s threatening. his is a time for negotiation, not coronation.

If we wait until minute two of his presidency to start being suspicious and criticizing him again, we will already be two months late. In many ways, we’re already a year and a half late as it is.

Your Thoughts?

Patheos Atheist LogoLike Camels With Hammers and Patheos Atheist on Facebook!

About Daniel Fincke

Dr. Daniel Fincke  has his PhD in philosophy from Fordham University and spent 11 years teaching in college classrooms. He wrote his dissertation on Ethics and the philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche. On Camels With Hammers, the careful philosophy blog he writes for a popular audience, Dan argues for atheism and develops a humanistic ethical theory he calls “Empowerment Ethics”. Dan also teaches affordable, non-matriculated, video-conferencing philosophy classes on ethics, Nietzsche, historical philosophy, and philosophy for atheists that anyone around the world can sign up for. (You can learn more about Dan’s online classes here.) Dan is an APPA  (American Philosophical Practitioners Association) certified philosophical counselor who offers philosophical advice services to help people work through the philosophical aspects of their practical problems or to work out their views on philosophical issues. (You can read examples of Dan’s advice here.) Through his blogging, his online teaching, and his philosophical advice services each, Dan specializes in helping people who have recently left a religious tradition work out their constructive answers to questions of ethics, metaphysics, the meaning of life, etc. as part of their process of radical worldview change.