It breaks my heart to see so many friends and loved ones grieving for our country today.
I know many of you, like me, are still processing this tectonic shift and what it means for our country and especially for those most vulnerable to the ugly strains of bigotry, misogyny, xenophobia, and Islamophobia energized by this election.
We need each other at a time like this. We need each other’s support and care to avoid falling into despair.
But we’ll also need each other’s wisdom and tenacity to strategize, organize and take action.
Please share your thoughts and feelings about the election results below in the comments below, or on Facebook. I want to hear how you are feeling, and what you are thinking about the future.
While we grieve the election results today, those of us who fight for peace and human rights are tough and resilient. We’ve had to be.
We fought the divisive fear-mongering of the long Cold War, we fought the high-stakes nuclear build-up of the Reagan administration, we opposed the unilateralist cowboy militarism of the George W. Bush administration. Even during tough times tenacious and targeted grassroots organizing allowed us to secure major victories for peace and disarmament while we blocked some of the hawks’ most harmful initiatives.
Don’t get me wrong. A Trump presidency, a Republican Congress, and the xenophobic elements of Trump’s base all combine to create a unique challenge the likes of which we have never faced. But we must rise to the occasion. We don’t have all the answers today about what strategies will best fit this radically new political landscape. Here at Peace Action, we’re engaged in strategic planning for the coming challenge, and here’s what we’re thinking about today:
- We’ll have to work in solidarity as never before to protect the communities targeted by bigotry. We’ll continue to mobilize for policies that welcome refugees from conflict zones across the world and support them once they are here. We need to fight Islamophobia on Capitol Hill and in our communities to prevent more scapegoating from being carried out in our foreign and domestic policies.
- In the immediate term, we need to mobilize quickly to encourage President Obama to take preventative action now. Trump’s finger on the button is the most terrifying aspect of his presidency. We can continue to push President Obama for changes to nuclear weapons policy which could make it harder for any president — including the President-elect — to launch a nuclear attack. We’ll also ask the president to take steps to lock down diplomatic successes like the Iran deal which Trump has pledged to dismantle.
- We’ll need to amplify a broad-based, public voice in foreign policy debates. The peace movement faces many threats from the Iran deal being gutted to increased Pentagon spending to military escalation in the Middle East. Trumps foreign policy statements have been all over the map. His temperament is chaotic. No one knows exactly how he will approach foreign policy but he’ll be dealing with a base with some anti-interventionist elements. We will mobilize the broadest grassroots movement possible and get our message out in the media to support cooperation and oppose a tilt towards more militarist foreign policies. We will push for vocal pro-diplomacy, pro-peace leadership in Congress, both with progressive Democrats and where possible with less interventionist Republicans.
Again please join the conversation in the comments and on Facebook,and tell us how you are feeling and what you are thinking about the road ahead.