It’s only been six days since Trump was sworn in as President. I knew things would start happening, and that it’d be fast, but I couldn’t have imagined how quickly.
Before Inauguration Day, Congress voted on their annual budget, which is normal. However, they re-allocated the ACA budget to miscellaneous. In Trump’s six days of office, he’s signed executive orders to:
- give power to agency and executive department heads to “waive, defer, grant exemptions from, or delay the implementation of any provision or requirement of the [Affordable Care Act]” while he works on repealing it
- pull federal funding from women’s affordable healthcare organizations that provide abortions, ignoring the fact that these same organizations also provide cancer treatment and other healthcare to low-income women, men, and teens
- resume and speed up the Dakota and Keystone Oil pipeline projects, continuing to route them through Standing Rock despite environmental concerns, land treaties, and President Obama’s executive order to halt the DAPL and look for alternative routes
- pull the U.S. out of the United Nations
- withdraw the U.S. from the Trans-Pacific Partnership
- ban refugees from entering the U.S., begin deportations, give police officers power to act as immigration officers, and block federal funding from sanctuary cities
- allow torture of political prisoners, which breaks the Geneva Convention
- begin building a wall between the U.S. and Mexico, which Mexico has refused to pay for; I suspect the ACA’s re-allocated funds will be paying for its materials, and political prisoners will be used for slave labor to build it
- impose a federal hiring freeze
- put a gag order on federal employees from disclosing information to the public or press (Environmental Protection Agency; departments of Commerce, Health, and Human Services; the Interior; and the Department of Agriculture, which was later lifted after public outcry)
- initiate an investigation into illegal votes, which can be used as a reason to affect voting in future elections
(Note: I will edit later and link to each EO; I’ve already spent too long at the computer and my joints are extremely sore.)
A President can sign as many executive orders as he wants, bypassing Congress. Congress can pass legislation to override EOs, but the President can veto them.
If this conflict persists, i.e. if Trump serves full term and/or GOP continues his agenda, US is heading twds de facto "regime collapse."
— Jasmin Mujanović (@JasminMuj) January 25, 2017
Trump said in a 2014 Fox interview that he wanted to wreak havoc.
You know what solves it? When the economy crashes, when the country goes to total hell and everything is a disaster. Then you’ll have a [chuckles], you know, you’ll have riots to go back to where we used to be when we were great.
So did Trump’s Chief Strategist and Senior Counselor, Steve Bannon, in a 2013 interview.
“I’m a Leninist,” Bannon proudly proclaimed.
Shocked, I asked him what he meant.
“Lenin,” he answered, “wanted to destroy the state, and that’s my goal too. I want to bring everything crashing down, and destroy all of today’s establishment.”
Trump has been leveraging our social, political, and working class issues, instigating the blame of our problems on disabled people, black people, Latinxs, and Muslims. He insists that the ACA is being taken advantage of by lazy people who don’t work. People who rely on the ACA and Medicaid for healthcare are veterans, single parents, people with disabilities, cancer patients, retired people, and low-income families. No statistical evidence suggests that any large percentage of people covered through the ACA are “lazy people.”
Trump blames crime on black and Latinx people, saying that killings in Chicago—largely populated by black and Latinx people—have increased, when they have in fact decreased. Chicago has long been a site for regular Trump protests. Yesterday, Trump threatened to send military into Chicago under the guise of preventing any more murders.
Trump is now apparently threatening to send either the National Guard or the U.S. military into a major American city.
Day 5. https://t.co/9AEiKBDJ5h
— leah mcelrath 🗽 (@leahmcelrath) January 25, 2017
He’s destroying our relationships with other countries’ leaders, which may be irreparable.
Mexican president regrets, condemns decision to build border wall; reportedly "considering" canceling US trip. https://t.co/htsgnm2Z8a
— The Associated Press (@AP) January 26, 2017
Though Trump’s authoritarian regime and collapse of the U.S. has begun, there’s still a lot we can do.
Advice on contacting your reps. This advice can apply not just to Dems but to independents and others opposing Trump admin policies pic.twitter.com/McjsPFJITN
— Sarah Kendzior (@sarahkendzior) January 25, 2017
Kendzior also says, via several tweets:
There’s a lot to do. I advise working locally. Know your community. Pick an issue or two you care about and commit for the long haul. And understand that as horrifying as this all is, millions stand with you. Find common ground, stand up for others—and know the enemy.
Senator Markey and Representative Lieu have introduced legislation to prevent Trump from launching a nuclear first strike without a Congressional declaration of war.
Shit is real here in the U.S., my home. Most of the people I know are either completely oblivious, in denial. They don’t see how dire things are. I’ve been following all of this and urging family and friends to pay attention. They won’t. I think, honestly, most of them just can’t believe anything like this can happen. They believe that our Constitution and government will protect us. The Constitution can only protect us if our government upholds it. Right now, our government is fighting amongst themselves. There’s little opposition from the Democrats against the Republicans and Trump’s Cabinet.
This is really happening.
We’re really living this.
It’s not exaggeration or alarmist to say that we’re living in an authoritarian crackdown. It appears that Trump is compromised, by both the Nationalists he’s put into his Cabinet and Putin.
This is really happening.
Alexandra Erin says that even Trump might not understand what he’s doing; he’s being told what to do (click the tweet to read thread).
So, here's a thing about Trump and his competence/mental state. I'm gong to list three things that have happened since he was elected.
— Alexandra Erin (@alexandraerin) January 24, 2017
It’s possible that we mere peons cannot even begin to understand what’s happening to us. We just know that we don’t want it and we don’t deserve it.
I’m at a loss here myself. I read each executive order with growing cynicism and horror. To be honest, I didn’t want to believe Kendzior’s and others’ apocalyptic predictions before and around Election Day. I thought that by urging electors to vote against Trump would be enough, but now it seems that we were fighting the wrong battle. We should’ve been urging our senators and representatives to pass legislation to block all of the things that Trump promised during his campaign, protecting all of the people that Trump is trying to harm.
It might be too late.
I’m not giving up. I’m terrified, to be perfectly honest. With every executive order that I read, I find it harder and harder to focus on anything; writing and working as normal seems pointless in the face of what’s happening. When this has happened in other countries, millions of people died. It seems like a cleansing has begun: women, disabled people, non-white people, queer people, Muslims.
I am three of those groups.
I said that the best resistance is existence, to keep creating art and living in spite of what’s happening. I urged people to donate to the organizations that fight for us. I pulled out an old YA novel that I wrote in 2011 about two lovestruck seventeen-year-olds fighting Nazis and told myself that I should put all of my angry, anxious energy into revising it.
I still believe in fighting for our freedom. I come from a family of veterans and I will never dishonor their sacrifice and memory by giving up those freedoms. I will keep writing. I will send letters to the White House. I will put aside my phone anxiety and call my state Senator and Representative, and ask them to fight. I will start attending town meetings and make my concerns heard.
My first ever letters to the POTUS. This is in support of the #ACA; someone on Twitter shared an idea, asking everyone who depends on the #affordablecareact / #obamacare—as well as everyone who doesn't—asking Trump to not make America sick again. The point is, if all 53 million who rely on the ACA send letters, a mountain of mail will arrive at the White House—which he can't ignore. See link in my bio for the tweet/info. #resistance #notmypresident #civilrights #womensmarch #chroniclife #chronicillness #chronicpain #spoonie #arthritis #cripthevote
and this, from my father pic.twitter.com/wvkY2uuLkY
— zoe kazan (@zoeinthecities) January 25, 2017
I will be brave by keeping on, even when I’m scared and overwhelmed. Even when people around me diminish my concerns. Especially then. Too much is at stake.