says Chris, a DACA recipient and activist with Refuse Fascism. "I was five years old when we crossed the border with my parents and my sisters. There were five of us. I remember riding piggyback on my dad's shoulders. He kept telling me we'd be fine, that everything would be OK if we could make it. He we kept praying with my mom, because we were worried about my sisters being raped." 

 

mcallen-detention-center-05.nocrop.w710.h2147483647-150x150.jpgOver time, Chris had acquired a kind of acceptance of immigration practice. "When I heard about DACA being ended, it didn't really make an impact on my life," he confesses. It took seeing children locked up in cages to decide to do something about it.Pre


The crimes of the Trump/Pence regime are many and varied, from kidnapping children to
sexual-assault policy. The nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court is a concentration of why the Trump/Pence fascist regime must be driven from power.

 

"Any judge that is nominated and confirmed under the authority of this regime will create a pro-fascist majority on the Supreme Court, one that upholds and advances the fascist program and makes it the law of the land," writes Coco Das. "[Brett Kavanaugh] will be a rubber stamp on the policies of this regime and eliminate one channel that the people have used, especially in the past few decades, to guarantee their rights."

 

The Trump/Pence regime has not yet been able to implement their full program. But they are advancing. It might only take a single serious crisis - international or domestic - for this regime to drop the hammer.

 

40285176_537978463308865_4406902660653907968_n.jpgKavanaugh is not a done deal, and neither is this regime. Join us Thursday September 27 to STOP the Appointment of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court! Rally and Speak Out 12:00 noon, One Post Plaza, corner of Montgomery & Market Street, San Francisco.

 

To dress as a 'Handmaid', contact afong@jps.net

 

We Refuse to Accept a Fascist America, in the streets, day after day, week after week. This regime must go, and we must not wait to act.

Say NO! to Climate Genocide

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When Donald Trump belittled U.S. participation in the 21st United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris, he set the stage to open the floodgates to $50 trillion dollars worth of shale, oil, natural gas and coal, recounts British reporter Charlotte Howes. "I think it's ridiculous," said Trump. "We have bigger problems right now... talking about global warming being the biggest problem facing this country is insane." The president and his cabinet prefer to rally around an illusory migration emergency

"The people who say that immigration is the real problem are now from the government of the United States, they are saying that climate change is explicitly not a problem, that it's a hoax," says activist and author Andreas Malm. "What we see with Trump's [election] victory is... a convergence between the xenophobic agenda and the climate change denialist agenda."  

5aa7d4252000007d06eb188c.jpgDonald Trump has proved somewhat of an inspiration for street artist Andrew Colwill. "Trump really opens my mind for me. When I hear somebody being as stupid and ignorant as that man is when it comes to the environment, he makes me want to work even more," says the muralist. "I am the living reaction to what is happening at the moment with these ignorant, right-wing, fascist individuals."

The world is "at a fork in the road," he adds, which could end with either "survival of a smaller, wealthier population" or a sharing of the planet's resources by all of humanity.

"If we were all just a little more active and involved politically, we could change so many things," Colwill suggests. But it will take massive numbers of ordinary people getting involved and doing things that stretch their comfort zones to counter the institutionalized lying and enforced ignorance of existential threats to our planet.

Trump is using climate change as a weapon of genocide, warns Keep Colorado Green founder Matthew Barad. "I have concluded that the coming harm of Trump's climate policies are not the product of ignorance, but intentionality."

In the past, Barad compared Trump to Nero: "His opulence and ignorance seemed reflective of Rome's fall." But today he hears a much more sinister tune. 

Trump's allies, from Richard Spencer to now-ousted Steve Bannon have an unmistakable Nazi streak. Spencer openly calls for a white ethno-state, and unapologetically blames ethnic diversity for the problems facing our world. Even Trump's "respectable" Republican allies regularly blame the poor for their poverty, and have even refused to provide blameless children with healthcare and food. This hatred for the poor and the diverse manifests itself in revocation of TPS for immigrants fleeing natural disasters, neglect of American citizens without homes, hope, or power, and the passage of legislation which systematically steals from the poor for the sake of the rich...

Trump, and those around him, are not only making climate change deadlier, they are ensuring that the "undesirables" are more vulnerable than ever before.

Musician and environmentalist Tim Hollo views climate change and fascism as two sides of the same coin: disconnection. "Climate change isn't 'just' an environmental issue... It will have enormous effects on where and how we live, on already difficult economic and racial justice challenges, on our economies, and much more. One under-appreciated aspect, however, is the impact it is likely to have on our politics."

What Hollo says he never expected was that "the relapse towards fascism might arrive well before the worst impacts of climate change." This reality demands we act now and act boldly. There truly is no time to waste. 

Nothing short of removing this whole illegitimate regime from power will stop the advance of a vicious American fascism that threatens life on this planet.

prison-strike-cervantes-square.jpgThe Florida legal term is akin to solitary confinement, employed as retaliation against prisoners participating in the latest prison strike against a system of mass incarceration that effectively perpetuates the racial caste system of twentieth century Jim Crow law.

Inmate resistance to the "modern slavery" of a prison labor system that forces them to work for as little as four cents per hour is growing. The nation-wide prison strike that launched August 21 (on the anniversary of the 1971 murder of George Jackson), confirmed in at least five Florida prisons, inspires complementary actions in prisons from North Carolina to California, reports Tarpley Hitt for The Daily Beast -- and statements of solidarity from 21 American cities and several foreign countries:

"Today, we extend our solidarity to the prisoners in the jails of the United States participating in the national prison strike beginning on August 21," wrote the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, a group of imprisoned Palestinians in Israel. "Black communities, Latino communities, Arab communities are under attack, facing mass incarceration and a system that seeks to imprison and exploit rather than support and nurture youth and elders."

Prison Strike 2018 is a response to the April 15 uprising in Lee Correctional Institution, South Carolina. Seven inmates lost their lives in an institution-provoked riot. In addition to condemnation of indentured labor, prisoner demands address living conditions, life without parole, racial discrimination, health and rehabilitation care, financial aid for education, and voting rights. 

"Prisoner demands... are taking their rightful place at the table in all conversations on how to begin to undo the atrocity that is mass incarceration in America," concludes the Prison Strike Media Team. "The prisoners' bold action must be followed up on the outside with policy changes and continuous conversations about living conditions and human rights abuse in the prisons."

2.3 million Americans, disproportionately Black and Latino, are incarcerated.  RefuseFascism.org  indicts the Trump/Pence Regime for White Supremacy, Police Brutality, and Mass Incarceration. Organizers have a plan to stop these and all the crimes of our government. World Can't Wait urges you to join them. A better world is possible.

Bay Area "Handmaids" assembled in downtown San Francisco Monday, August 13, to protest the Trump/Pence regime's theocratic war on women's reproductive freedom. Aggressive moves to criminalize abortion and assail women's right to birth control are key components of the thoroughly reactionary restructuring of society we are determined to stop -- before it is too late.  

Copy of IMG_2489.JPGSixteen volunteers in blood-red cloaks and white modesty bonnets -- costumes inspired by the popular Hulu TV series The Handmaid's Tale, based on Margaret Atwood's novel of the same title -- rallied at the Powell Street cable car turnaround at Market Street and marched, two by two, through Union Square, a major public square in San Francisco, to the 450 Sutter Street Support Circle anti-abortion clinic.  Two Handmaids went up to the clinic, on the 17th floor, which was closed, and posted a statement from Refuse Fascism on the door.  Three "pro-life" agitators failed to disrupt the demonstration. 

Literally hundreds of people took pictures, videos, etc. of the procession of Handmaids through this high-end shopping and tourism part of San Francisco.  Refuse Fascism passed out copies of a statement about the action, which saluted the Handmaids for standing up against the US Supreme Court decision backing the phony abortion clinics, and for women's rights, and situated this in the larger fight to get rid of the whole fascist regime:

The Handmaids call on everyone to reject the normalization and accommodation of what was once considered unthinkable.  They refuse to stand by in silence while the regime: puts children in cages; wages savage wars and makes gangster threats toward even greater and more devastating wars, even nuclear war;  unleashes brutal white supremacy; demonizes Muslims; rips away rights of LGBTQ people; devastates the environment.  

The Handmaids sound an alarm and a warning - of how far things have already gone, and how far they yet can go, if people do not rise up in their millions, in the name of humanity, to drive out this regime.

After visiting the clinic, the Handmaids returned to Union Square, where marchers shed their costumes for a public Speak Out. The plaza audience was invited to view three of seven Indictment Panels produced by RefuseFascism.org .

Participants in Monday's action plan to repeat their street performance, and proposed August 26 Unite for Justice: Bay Area to #StopKavanaugh for a venue. In conclusion, Handmaids "mic checked" the Refuse Fascism 2018 Call to Action:

"We Pledge that we will not stand aside while there is still a chance to stop a regime that imperils humanity and the earth itself.  Join us.  Let's stand together with conviction and courage, overcoming fear and uncertainty, to struggle with all we've got to demand:

THE TRUMP/PENCE REGIME MUST GO!"

He's hardly the only one rejecting 'civil' discussion of Trump's legitimacy. "We've known he's a racist since at least 1989, when he tried to get the Central Park Five killed -- executed for a crime they did not commit," Smith says. "And maybe before that, when he wouldn't rent any of his properties to black people."

10MUYUMBA-jumbo-v2.jpgOn the eve of the 'Unite the Right' rally in Washington, DC,  the Invisible Man, Got the Whole World Watching author slamed the president on national TV over his National Football League tweets against black players. "In seeing the NFL players be insubordinate and not deferential to a white supremacist notion of what country and fealty to country should be, he is calling for them to bend a knee to him, to say to them that they need to recognize their place, to not step out of line, to entertain us, to be the black bodies that entertain us," Smith continued.

The second Unite the Right rally will start in Lafayette Park in Washington, DC, from August 11 to 12, the anniversary of the original in Charlottesville, Virginia; according to the rally's website, the main demonstration is planned to start at 5:30 pm in Lafayette Square on the 12th. Jason Kessler, the main face of the rally, initially wanted to hold the second demonstration in Charlottesville, but the city denied his request, which led him to the nation's capital. -- Amanda Arnold, The Cut

National Park Service documents show confirmed speakers include neo-Nazi Patrick Little, former Ku Klux Klan Grand Wizard David Duke, Suidlanders spokesman Simon Roche, Patriot Prayer follower Kevin Cormier, Revolutionary Conservative editor Avialae Horton, attorney Corey Mahler, and "pro-white" town manager Tom Kawczynski.

Why is this allowed to happen?

RefuseFascism.org counter-protesters have put out a call:

In the Name of Humanity, Join Refuse Fascism in DC to Say NO to White Supremacy and a Fascist America!  
Our actions to stop these fascist white supremacists should build the unity and strength needed to launch a nationwide struggle beginning with tens of thousands in cities across the country that continue day after day and DO NOT STOP until the demand, This Nightmare Must End: The Trump/Pence Regime Must Go!, is met. All who want to fight for a better future need to forge the unity to stop this fascism before it is too late.

Donate to send Refuse Fascism to DC here

This Nightmare Must End: The Trump/Pence Regime Must Go!   

5472 (1).jpgRefuseFascism.org is gearing up for action against concentrated attacks on female autonomy by Christian fundamentalist allies in government. Handmaid's Tale volunteers will gather and march to sound an alarm and a warning - of how far things have already gone, and how far they yet can go, if people do not rise up in their millions to stop this regime. 

The June 26th Supreme Court decision, NIFLA vs. Becerra, upheld the pro-life challenge to reproductive freedom enjoyed by Californians. As atrocious as that ruling is, it is just a taste of what is coming. And it has national consequences: abortion continues to be increasingly more difficult to access, more dangerous to provide, and more stigmatized than ever. Women are being forced to go to desperate measures to secure abortions--often traveling hundreds of miles, going deep into debt, enduring sexual degradation to come up with the funds, losing their jobs, and more.

So-called "crisis pregnancy centers" coerce women and girls to bear children against their will. At this protest, we will be acting in the spirit of refusing to accept a world in which women are valued as incubators and little more, in an extreme patriarchal society; and we will be refusing to accept a fascist America. We will be contributing to the battle to drive the Trump/Pence regime from office.

Key events for the Handmaids protest:

Thursday August 9, 6:30pm:  Fundraiser and party to raise funds for Handmaids costumes, La Corneta Tacqueria, 2751 Mission Street, San Francisco

Friday August 10, 7:00pm: Sewing/Costume making/Pizza nite, Revolution Books, 2444 Durant, Berkeley

Monday August 13, 1:00pm: Gather at Powell and Market (cable car turnaround) in San Francisco for the Handmaids march through Union Square and to a "crisis pregnancy center."

The Handsmaids are only fictional characters in a Margaret Atwood's "The Handmaid's Tale." Trump, Pence, Kavanaugh and many more now in power are all too real. The Handmaids issue a call: a fully fascist America is barreling down the pike - unless we rise up and drive the regime from power.

Join in providing financial support for Refuse Fascism by pledging to contribute a monthly sustainer: http://donate.refusefascism.org/

You Can't Vote Out Fascism.

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It Must Be Driven From Power.

36451467_10155970419037098_6139941794453913600_n.jpg"I don't want to sugarcoat it: it's not going to be easy, and there are no guarantees of success," writes USC School of Cinematic Arts research professor Perry Hoberman. "But it is possible. Millions of people--almost certainly the majority of Americans--hate this and are agonizing over what this regime is doing to our country, the world and the planet itself...

"The regime's words and actions, insane as they might appear to any rational human being, are not arbitrary, and they're not just bluster. These guys mean exactly what they say. 

"[Refuse Fascism is] the only group that has raised the single unifying demand that The Trump/Pence Regime Must Go! I urge you to read their call, to join, to donate, to talk to your friends, families and colleagues, to be one of thousands now, leading to tens and then hundreds of thousands, and finally millions, taking to the streets--and staying there--until the demand is met: In the Name of Humanity, This Nightmare Must End: The Trump/Pence Regime Must Go!"

"[Fascists] will continue until we force them to stop," concludes Hoberman. "And that's not going to happen through normal channels."

Next World Can't Wait-endorsed Refuse Fascism organizing meeting Tuesday July 24, 6:30pm
Join us at the Sports Basement, 1590 Bryant and 15th Street, San Francisco

"You don't need permission to do what's right," says organizer Coco Das. 

"You don't need permission from elected officials ...
"You don't need permission from the media ...
"You don't need permission from pundits ...

"You don't need permission from lawyers ... your favorite non-profit ... from Canada or Switzerland or the United Nations ... You know what this regime is doing is criminal, so act without permission. Follow your conscience."

Join the movement to drive out the Trump/Pence Regime! 
Meetup 12 Noon
San Francisco Federal Building
7th Street & Mission

indict signs.jpgVolunteers needed to premiere huge, door-sized panels depicting RefuseFascism.org INDICTMENTS of government policy:

  • Crimes Against Muslims
  • Stripping Away Civil Liberties and Criminalizing Dissent
  • Crimes Against People of the World
  • Waging War on Women and LGBTQ People
  • White Supremacy, Police Brutality, and Mass Incarceration
  • Waging War on Truth, Science, and the Environment
  • Terrorizing and Attacking Immigrants and Refugees

As hundreds of thousands are taking to the streets in outrage at the obscene ripping away of children from their families by the Trump/Pence Regime... as fascist court rulings enshrine Christian fascist oppression as law of the land, as the SCOTUS backs disenfranchising black and brown voters and upholds a Muslim Travel Ban...getting these substantive, big and bold indictments out across the country is a potential game-changer.

These posters are traffic-stoppers, literally and figuratively. They confront people with the REALITY, the BIG PICTURE of a FASCIST REGIME imperiling humanity and the earth itself. People all over the world are counting on us to STOP this nightmare.

Donate NOW to fund the only organization with the vision and viable plan to drive out the Trump/Pence regime through non-violent, sustained mass resistance.

trump-has-not-backed-down.pngFor more than two years, Democrats have struggled to box resistance to Trump et al in a "civilized" package of reform for the corrupt and untenable system of global exploitation they propagate. Today's Supreme Court rulings should make us cast aside all illusions that there is a way out of this nightmare through "checks and balances" built into the three branches of U.S. government. Congressional failure to restrain overreach of executive privilege requires a movement by the millions of people who deeply hate what is going on to drive out the Trump/Pence regime.

We must not underestimate the determination of fascists to effect a thoroughly reactionary restructuring of society. "We are horrified and angered at the shocking damage already done to lives here and around the world by the Trump/Pence regime," reads the preamble to Refuse Fascism's 2018 Call to Action. "We recognize that they are poised to do far worse... Therefore, WE RESOLVE that nothing short of removing this whole illegitimate regime from power will stop this nightmare."

Recent attempts at shaming institutional Democrats are lambasted by establishment-aligned party officials --  and hailed by a new guard of disobedience (direct action) leaders united in creating the kind of political situation where the Trump/Pence regime is driven out. We must shake millions awake, to confront the reality that the world as we have known it is being torn asunder. RefuseFascism.org has a way.

World Can't Wait members and friends are invited June 26 and following Tuesdays to weekly planning meetings, 6:30pm on the third floor of Sports Basement, 1590 Bryant (at 15th Street), San Francisco. 

BE the Trump Resistance

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"I'll never forgive Trump and I won't stop talking about it," says Mike Mills, founding member of the alternative rock band R.E.M. "It's not just who he is and what he represents... It's what he's done to the American political process. He has allowed stupidity to be the coin of the realm, he has allowed thinking that has been and should always be marginalised and on the edges to become almost part of the mainstream...

"So it's not just his policies, it's not just his stupidity - it's what he's done and what he's allowed to happen."

As opinion columnists like Thomas Friedman capitulate to the Democratic Party for relief from "trumpence" in a wistful fit of magical thinking, people of conscience confront the failed policy of "lesser evil" politics that strangle any meaningful resistance to the outrageous crimes of their government.

Congressional endorsement of state-sponsored terror, most recently demonstrated by approval of a torture advocate to head the Central Intelligence Agency, confirms what we already knew: the tripartite system of U.S. governance is not going to be reformed from within. Gina Haspel's commitment to defending the unlawful actions of her colleagues guarantees a repeat of the U.S. prisoner abuse exported to Guantanamo and beyond.    

CIA veterans lobbied for the nominee, calling Haspel a competent, experienced and highly qualified intelligence professional. "That's why she's a terrible choice," said John Feffer at the Institute for Policy Studies. But unscrupulous, unquestioning obedience to criminal directives is a highly regarded quality in the fascist circle attending the White House. President Trump chose the C.I.A. director precisely because of her past, celebrating Haspel's role in the "enhanced interrogation" program that included the controlled drowning of detainees.  

Haspel's confirmation by the U.S. Senate in no way absolves CIA complicity in America's wars of terror. Nor does it relieve congressional oversight responsibility to hold public officials accountable for criminal actions. But it should compel the rest of us to take up the call to stop the crimes of our increasingly fascistic government, before it is too late.  

This week, Franklin Graham, son of the late Billy Graham, brings his "Decision America" tour to Berkeley to take a stand against California's "blue wall." Billed as religious "revivals", Graham's campaign-style rallies across California and the Pacific Northwest advance opposition to abortion and same-sex marriage. 

 

fgtourprotest2-1.jpgJoin Refuse Fascism  
Friday June 1, 6:00 pm
University Ave & Sixth Street 
Berkeley

Graham's sponsorship of Donald Trump's program of white supremacy, misogyny and xenophobia is billed as a religious revival, but make no mistake: "Decision America" is about mobilizing a blind, obedient, and fervent fascist base for the Trump/Pence regime.

Trump's call to "Make America Great Again" gets misrepresented as regression to an earlier, less compassionate America, warns The American Prospect columnist Adele Stan. But what we're facing is much more than a pendulum swing of American values. "Taken together... these assaults... add up to groundwork laid for the imposition of a much harder form of authoritarianism likely planned for the near future. You just have to step back far enough from the onslaught of outrageous actions to view the pattern."

White evangelical support was essential to the election of Donald Trump in 2016, and continues to facilitate expansion of the organized repression and terror characteristic of his rule. By no means monolithic (endorsement of the president occasions much discord among religious groups), Trump's "Make America Great Again" program represents a particularly American version of fascism, substantiated in modern day application of Manifest Destiny and End Times theology.

"It would be a mistake to be dismissive of End Times believers," says humanist David Niose, "because their influence in American policymaking is far from marginal." "End times," or "end of days" eschatology is embraced by numerous employees of the Trump/Pence regime, including secretary of state Mike Pompeo. Donald Trump's evangelical Christian Cabinet threatens to "bring an unsettlingly theocratic attitude to America's foreign policy," warns Vox staff writer Tara Isabella Burton. 

"For many evangelicals, apocalyptic 'good versus evil' battles, particularly centered over the 'Holy Land' of the Middle East, are signs that the longed-for end may be at hand," adds Burton. The widespread fixation among evangelicals with the end times helps to explain their outspoken defense of a president who holds little regard for the future of humanity -- or the planet.

L-OPSM-Opening-Blessing-720x540.jpgFreelance art critic Christian Frock demands exposure of Israeli Apartheid:

"American media needs to be held accountable for reporting on what happened in Gaza and on what is happening to Palestinians every day.

"Americans also need to understand our complicity in this violence and to do our part, as consumers, to lift up journalism that tells the truth about rising fascism worldwide and to crowd-correct journalism that avoids ugly truths...

"Arts coverage is not life or death, but it can hold a mirror up to much larger systemic abuses."

Yelp reviews here

Climate scientist Ben Santer fights 'alternative facts'. He's not alone. The consequences of global warming denial affect every person on the planet. Santer advises human actions must be part of the solution:

"You jump through hoops. You do due diligence. You go down every blind alley, every rabbit hole. Over time, the evidence for a discernible human influence on global climate becomes overwhelming.

IMG_1421.JPG"You tell others what you've done, what you've learned and what the climatic 'shape of things to come' might look like if we do nothing to reduce emissions of heat-trapping greenhouse gases. You speak not only to your scientific peers but also to a wide variety of audiences, some of which are skeptical about you and everything you do. You enter the public arena and make yourself accountable."

Donald Trump is more hostile to modern science than any previous president, adds history of science professor Robert N. Proctor. "We now live in a world where ignorance of a very dangerous sort is being deliberately manufactured, to protect certain kinds of unfettered corporate enterprise." 

We can't afford to wait years for a change in management. We must create a political situation where the Trump administration's program is repudiated, where Trump and Pence are driven from office.

"The Trump administration has promised vast changes to U.S. science and environmental policy," headlines the National Geographic. "The stakes are enormous." Writers Michael Greshko, Laura Parker, and Brian Clark Howard are tracking them as they happen. Their list is pretty damn comprehensive, and well worth a read.

"For a society so worried about things that can kill us, we've focused very little of our attention on the thing that surely will," observes Tom Engelhardt, author of The United States of Fear. "Warming of the planet -- thanks to the fossil fuel system we live by and the greenhouse gases it deposits in the atmosphere -- is already doing real damage to our world.

"When we speak of weapons of mass destruction (WMD), we usually think of weapons -- nuclear, biological, or chemical -- that are delivered in a measurable moment in time. Consider climate change, then, a WMD on a particularly long fuse, already lit and there for any of us to see."

War and militarism fuel climate change. "The Pentagon is the single greatest institutional consumer of fossil fuels," notes Environmentalists Against War Gar Smith. "Oil barrels and gun barrels both pose a threat to our survival. The amount of oil burned -- and the burden of smoke released -- increases whenever the Pentagon goes to war."

But "the real danger is that the way we live our lives as Americans, no matter our optimism about the future, is no longer sustainable," warns Eddie Glaude Jr., chair of the Department of African American Studies at Princeton. 

"We can't continue to live with the current level of income inequality. Hard working people are working longer hours for less pay. And politicians and their benefactors continue to argue for trade policies that have decimated the working class in this country. We can't continue to lock up black and brown people or watch them killed in cold blood by people sworn to protect us or fail to publicly educate all of our children. We can't continue to bomb people around the world into oblivion." 

We should not cower in fear, counsels Professor of Theology and Culture Mark Lewis Taylor. "Privileged citizens and residents need to bare their rage at the structures of abuse. . . we need to renew our commitments to the political movements on the ground and at work in contesting both the right and the 'lesser evil' of today's corporate and imperial state." But "any fresh vanguard for revolutionary change, must come from the most vulnerable themselves, from the communities long targeted by racist and misogynous power in the history of U.S. capitalism's structural violence. It is these communities' movements that put material pressure on the more privileged and protected to resist the corporate state. 

"Those most vulnerable to a Trump regime are not powerless. They are not primarily -- surely not only -- victims. They are also resisters with powers for throwing off oppression, building movements for justice and to redress wrongs and imagine new political life. All the while they can also extend at times astonishing acts of love and human dignity."

We must not let ignorance win. People all over the world need for us to succeed. Read, share, add your name to the new Refuse Fascism Call to Action that diagnoses the existential threat to humanity posed by Donald Trump's war on science and the only way to stop it: The Trump/Pence Regime Must Go!

 

"There's a lot of people hoping that Democrats somehow intervene," says Refuse Fascism organizer Raphael Kadaris. Or that a successful conclusion to special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election will force Donald Trump's resignation or impeachment. But "the idea we that we can rely on people in the FBI or Democratic party is a dangerous illusion." And we should not be dissuaded by political pundits (Madeleine Albright for example) whose real mission, in calling out fascism, is to preserve U.S. imperialism. 

RefuseFascism.org refreshes its Call to Action next week, Wednesday April 11, with a 30 minute livestream from New York City (3:45 pm west coast time) that will include a dramatic reading of the call and a presentation of the national plan to drive out the Trump/Pence regime. RSVP to access the livestream

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We must not reassure ourselves that fascism couldn't take hold in the U.S.  Trump's "Make America Great Again" is a 21st century program of Manifest Destiny - "America First" - a program of white supremacy, misogyny, and xenophobia.

People all over the world are counting on us to end this nightmare. The fascists in the White House have not yet been able to implement their full program. There is still time to stop its advance, but not a lot of time.

 

"The Trump/Pence Regime poses a catastrophic danger to humanity and the planet," reads the Call, and "it is our responsibility to drive them from power through non-violent protests that grow every day until our demand is met. This means working and organizing with all our creativity and determination to bring thousands, eventually millions of people into the streets of cities and towns, to demand:

This Nightmare Must End:
The Trump/Pence Regime Must Go!"

Join us Thursday April 12, 6:30 pm for review and discussion of the video
Sports Basement, 1590 Bryant (at 15th Street), San Francisco

"There are few people more likely than Mr. Bolton is to lead the country into war. His selection is a decision that is as alarming as any Mr. Trump has made so far," asserts The New York Times Editorial Board. "Coupled with his nomination of the hard-line C.I.A. director, Mike Pompeo, as secretary of state, Mr. Trump is indulging his worst nationalistic instincts." 

w460.jpgIt's Time to Panic Now 

While the appointment of Mr. Pompeo, former president of Sentry International, an oilfield equipment company partnered with Koch Industries, must be deliberated by an frighteningly acquiescent Congress, John Bolton faces no such vote of approval. The national security adviser job doesn't require confirmation.

National Security Advisor-designate (his term commences on April 9) John Bolton crusades for the launch of U.S. pre-emptive war against North Korea. He laid out "The Legal Case for Striking North Korea First" for The Wall Street Journal on February 28, positing that "it is perfectly legitimate for the United States to respond to the current 'necessity' posed by North Korea's nuclear weapons by striking first." Bolton disparages diplomatic channels, including the President's planned summit with Kim Jong-un in May, suggesting such talks would be worthless.

And, if Trump fails to sign the sanctions waiver on Iran in mid-May, in violation of the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement, he could trigger a second crisis in the Gulf. Despite the State Department's admission that Iran is "in technical compliance to their commitments," the President seems determined to withdraw from the arms deal, in sync with prescriptions for war by his most belicose admirer. 

"A close look shows [Bolton's] genuinely one of the most extreme, irresponsible, and dangerous voices in the country," said Adam Mount, weapons expert at the Federation of American Scientists. 

A Hawk Among Hawks

As a senior adviser to George W Bush on issues of arms control and international security, Bolton championed the U.S. invasion and occupation of Iraq. He advocates an "aggressive military interventionist program around the world, coupled with staunch anti-immigration rhetoric," wrote Jamiles Lartey at The Guardian.

The new National Security Advisor feels no humanitarian obligation to accept Syrian Refugees: "The U.S. can refuse to allow Syrian refugees entry 'without in any way violating our humanitarian obligations'" Bolton told Fox News host Jeanine Pirro in 2015, as millions were fleeing the American-sponsored war. What gets lost in this exchange is the reality that people are fleeing in large part because of American foreign-policy decisions. And the myth of American exceptionalism, that the U.S. wages war in the interests of humanity, that what's good for the U.S.A. is good for the world.

The Trump/Pence Regime Won't Collapse of its Own Accord

There's still time to drive out the Trump/Pence regime. But not a lot of time.

There will be no appeasing Donald Trump or his supporters. "It is useful for Americans to recognize that we are facing something entirely new and different in American history," comments professor Peter Dreier. "Certainly none of us in our lifetimes have confronted an American government led by someone like Trump in terms of his sociopathic, demagogic, impulsive, and vindictive personality (not even Nixon came close). . .

"Our stance must be one of resistance and opposition."

Students of Marjory Stoneman Douglas (MSD) High School are vocal about the need for gun control. Never Again has amassed more than 61,000 followers. Some members of the movement are refusing to go back to school until gun legislation is passed. Students and young people have always played a critical role in every major movement for justice and positive change. This is needed now more than ever, says refusefascism.org:

When those in power tried to write the Parkland massacre off as just another mass shooting, students answered NO. Students drew a line and made clear that we are not going to allow shootings to be "normal" anymore. Now we need to do the same thing in challenging the legitimacy of the Trump/Pence regime because we can't and we won't allow ourselves to become normalized to fascism. The future is a true nightmare if this regime is not stopped and ONLY the people, rising up in mass sustained nonviolent protest, can stop this nightmare by driving this regime from power.  

Walkout_1200.jpgPost-inauguration of Donald Trump, an abundance of political and social issues have become topics of everyday conversation. From Muslim travel bans to his proposed armament of teachers, the President has inspired a wave of fresh protest against massive exploitation (and destruction; this week marks the 15th anniversary of the start of the Iraq War) of human life. Students of all ages have contributed hugely to visible resistance to authoritarian regimes around the world.

"Student activism catalyzes societal change," argues Sarah Simon at The Hullabaloo. "The true meaning of the anti-Trump protests is to display that we the people do not consent to this government, and we value the marginalized groups in this nation who will not feel valued under the Trump administration." 

We must not allow, we must be determined to stop, the advance of white nationalist agenda in our name.

March Against Gun Violence In Our Schools

#MarchForOurLives

Bay Area Solidarity Rallies

Frank H Ogawa Plaza, Oakland 

Saturday March 24, 10:00 am

Civic Center, San Francisco

Saturday March 24, 1:00 pm 

Note from organizers: The Oakland event will 

just be a rally leading up to the San Francisco 

march. At the end of the Oakland rally, we will 

all BART to San Francisco to join forces. At 

the end of their program (around 2:45), we will 

all march together. For the Oakland rally, we 

will hear from our students, advocacy groups, 

and our representatives.  

We stand in solidarity with 700+ events 

around the country. We have scheduled our 

event at this time on purpose so the entire 

Bay Area can march together.

The French term for targeted arrest of wartime Jews was rafle; in Denmark and the Netherlands, the practice was called razzia. The Polish lapanka can be translated as "to catch." By any name, the German tactic of enforced deportation was illegal and immoral, condemned as a war crime under international law. 

2018_0228scotus.jpgThe Holocaust did not begin with the gassing of "undesireables"--the Final Solution was not approved by senior Nazi leadership until January 20, 1942 at the Wannsee Conference outside Berlin--but evolved over time, "beginning with systematic persecution aimed in part at encouraging Jewish emigration from Germany to other countries." And death of "illegal aliens," while too often the consequence of US government border policy, is not necessarily coincident to President Trump's expulsion orders. What is common to ICE's mission and the history of Hitler's genocide is the phenomenon of ethnic cleansing.

"ICE's deportation zeal stands in contrast to a particularly shameful chapter in its history," reminds historian Jared McBride. When it was known as the US Immigration and Naturalization Service, from 1945 to 1979, "it repeatedly failed to investigate and remove European war criminals from the US. And that included Holocaust perpetrators." 

Disappeared by the State  

The Supreme Court recently ruled that US immigration officials can detain immigrants within the US indefinitely reports Kelly Hayes for truth-out.org, without offering periodic bond hearings. Immigrants with permanent legal status and those seeking asylum would not be exempt from this policy: 

Being "disappeared" by the state is hardly a new concept amongst undocumented people. Alejandro Rodriguez, the lead plaintiff in Tuesday's case, is a legal permanent resident who lingered in detention for three years, without access to a bond hearing, due to a misdemeanor drug offense. The ACLU ultimately took up Rodriguez's case, scoring a victory in the circuit court, wherein the court ruled that immigrant detainees were entitled to bond hearings every six months. The Obama administration appealed that ruling, arguing that the United States government has the right to detain "criminal and terrorist aliens," and the Trump administration predictably opted to continue the case. But while the case and controversy predate the Trump administration, this decision comes at a particularly frightening time for undocumented immigrants, who are already living in the crosshairs of the Trump administration.

Choose a Side

Holocaust survivor Ervin Staub believes that bystanders play a far more critical role in society than people realize: "Bystanders, people who witness but are not directly affected by the actions of perpetrators, help shape society by their reactions.... Bystanders can exert powerful influences." 

Primo Levi challenges the notion that "Good Germans" were not aware of the horrible atrocities being committed by the Nazis:

In spite of the varied possibilities for information, most Germans didn't know because they didn't want to know. Because, indeed, they wanted not to know....In Hitler's Germany a particular code was widespread: those who knew did not talk; those who did not know did not ask questions; those who did ask questions received no answers. In this way the typical German citizen won and defended his ignorance, which seemed to him sufficient justification of his adherence to Nazism. Shutting his mouth, his eyes and his ears, he built for himself the illusion of not knowing, hence not being an accomplice to the things taking place in front of his very door.

The very future of humanity demands we not make the same mistake. RefuseFascism.org offers a vehicle to stop the nightmare of the Trump/Pence Regime: If we understand and come to grips with the character of the problem we face, we can find and work on the solution. We will have our differences, which we should acknowledge and engage; such differences, however, can NOT prevent us from uniting and acting together in the larger interests of humanity.

Beware the Evolving Nature of Genocide

Social ostracism, abrogation of legal rights, and organized physical violence advance in stages towards the "ultimate war crime,"  defined by the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg as an illegal war of aggression against a sovereign nation. US Senator Jim Risch warns that war on North Korea would be "one of the worst catastrophic events in the history of our civilization." Trump now has his finger on the nuclear trigger. During his campaign, he asked a foreign policy expert three times: If we have nukes, why can't we use them? National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster announced Trump has ordered the military to "prepare all options because the President has made clear to us that he will not accept a nuclear power in North Korea."

Revolution Newspaper has called out the real aggressor: "The US has been--for 70 years--and remains the real aggressor here, starting with the Korean War of 1950-53, and ever afterward. And it must not be forgotten that during the Korean War, the US carpet-bombed and eventually burned down every town in North Korea, and that an estimated three million Korean civilians, the great majority in the North, were killed in this war...

"It is a fundamental outrage that we live in a world where the survival of humanity rests in the hands of someone like Donald Trump; that the people of the Korean peninsula, and humanity, are held hostage to his acts and speech."

Now is the time for everyone to come to the defense of those first and most viciously under attack and strengthen the movement to drive the fascist Trump/Pence regime from power.  

Youth Reject a Lockdown Future

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Children are in the crosshairs. UNICEF identifies the most dangerous places for children--schools in war-torn areas of the globe--with stories of brutality incomprehensible to most Americans. In the scarce schools available, those students face exploitation as human shields and cannon fodder. And while US schools are relatively free of bloody confrontation, an appalling new threat is emerging: teachers trained to shoot students.

Students are 'fed up' going to school scared for their lives and demand a ban on domestic military grade weapons. The AR-15 rifle used to spray bullets inside and outside Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in last week's massacre has no legitimate use in any community, said junior Ashley Santoro: "There's no real reason for anybody to own these."  

4e0 copy.jpg

"He [Nikolas Cruz] was a very good shot," said Aaron Diener, member of the same Army Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (JROTC) marksmanship team as the gunman in the Parkland, Florida, shooting, supported by a grant from the National Rifle Association (NRA). "He had an AR-15 he talked about... He would tell us, 'Oh, it was so fun to shoot this rifle' or 'It was so fun to shoot that.' It seemed almost therapeutic to him, the way he spoke." 

The Buckeye Firearms Foundation fund offers so-called "Faster" programs, three-day training sessions for teachers from around the country. In addition to target practice, one day of the training is devoted to "mindset development." Trainees are asked to "close their eyes and imagine the student entering the classroom with a gun" and then are taught how to find the necessary "grit" to kill that student.

"If this isn't the end of civilization, I don't know what is," wrote The Nation columnist Patricia Williams. "Unless we wrap our bodies perpetually in Kevlar and travel in bomb-resistant tanks," the problem remains: there are simply too many guns in circulation.                   

"Gun reform is no substitute for real justice and the necessary abolition of a death-dealing and cruel economic and political system that is the antithesis of democracy," says McMaster University professor Henry Giroux. "There is no defense for putting the policies of the NRA ahead of the lives of children." 

"We are still in the early stages of an authoritarian regime change," warns Salon writer Chauncey Devega. "We still have an aspiring authoritarian leader. Many people have gotten to the point where I was a year ago, which is recognizing that this situation is uncertain and the outcome depends upon us. Matters are not hopeless but they are dire. The stakes are very high."

23130615_383701095403270_6232484761537580188_n.jpgIn his 2017 book On Tyranny, Yale historian Timothy Snyder gave the American people one year to stop Donald Trump from shredding traditional democratic rights. Without speculating on a national emergency (like Nazi Germany's "Reichstag fire") staged in order to consolidate power, we can safely predict an upsurge in governmental repression and control in response to the resistance we've mustered to date. "I think what people have done in the last year has made a tremendous difference," says Snyder. "Things are bad and they're going to get worse before they get better, but if it weren't for the marches, local activists, lawyers defending people's civil rights, citizens calling their representatives and investigative journalists doing their jobs, things could be a lot worse than they are." But "if we all get tired and say we can't do it anymore, then things will go south very quickly."

Chauncey DeVega concludes that Americans must react better than the Germans did in 1933. He is surprised at the lack of realization that a mainstream (Republican) party "is allowing something extraordinary to happen in America. But after a while there will not be mainstream parties anymore. The analogies are clearly there."

There was enough of a base for Hitler to stay in power, roughly the same size of Trump's following, roughly a third of the population. But "it's not a situation where if Donald Trump has 25 percent of the public, we are safe, and if he has 35 percent, we are doomed," adds DeVega. "The ways Americans interact with each other as members of a shared community" will demonstrate our determination to refuse to accept a fascist America.  

The Changing Nature of Tyranny

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Whether Trump/Pence is a direct replica of the Nazi regime has little relevance compared to the serious challenges he poses, argues Henry Giroux at Truthout. When people with power and influence remain silent in the face of "lies and ruthless polices" of the Trump administration, they sanction state violence characteristic of authoritarian regimes: racial cleansing, unchecked militarism and class warfare. "The first casualty of the Trump era is truth, the second is moral responsibility, the third is any vestige of justice, and the fourth is a massive increase in human misery and suffering for millions."

Trump is an ominous threat to democracy and lives, observes Masha Gessen, staff writer at The New Yorker. "Merely mitigating the damage done by the endlessly ascendant anti-immigrant right" just doesn't cut it. She frames the issue of immigration in moral rather than economic terms (that immigrants are good people who benefit the economy). Gessen's approach would address "American responsibility in a world in which tens of millions of people have been displaced by war, famine, and violence...

"This would mean talking not only about the Haitian or Salvadoran refugees who are being deported from the United States but also about the hundreds of thousands of Syrian and Yemeni refugees who have no hope of entering the one country in the world best situated to give them shelter. It may address the future of a planet that is slowly becoming unsuitable for human habitation, and the American responsibility to those who lose their homes as a result. It may even question the premise that the dumb luck of having been born in the United States gives a group of people the right to decide who may enter the premises."

British historian Richard Evans notes that there is more than one way to destroy a democracy (sending troops into the streets, storming radio stations, and arresting politicians). "Even if Hitler wasn't directly elected to power, his appointment as Reich chancellor was legal and constitutional." Donald Trump's intent to shred political and social norms  was clear from the start -- "In the first weeks of the Trump/Pence regime they have begun subverting the separation of powers, the separation of Church and State," reads the RefuseFascism.org Call to Action:

"..[they] called for a new nuclear arms race, demonized the press, dismissed the very concept of truth substituting their own fabricated 'alternative facts'.  It can already be said of Trump/Pence that 'first they came for' the Muslims, then the Mexicans, then all refugees, then women, then Black and Latino people, LGBTQ persons, the environment, and anyone who doesn't conform or submit to their vision and plan for a nation cohered around white supremacy and a political form of Christian fundamentalism, that should rightly be called Christian Fascism."

z.jpgToday fascist and neo-fascist movements are on the upswing, warns social studies educator Alan Singer. To those who profess fascism "can't happen here," he reminds us that the domestic threat to the United States prior to World War II was all too real: on February 20, 1939, an estimated 22,000 American fascists held a "pro-German, pro-Nazi rally" in New York City's Madison Square Garden. Photographer John Gutmann recorded an even earlier assembly at San Francisco City Hall in 1935 (photo). Similar rallies occurred across the country.

During World War II the United States War Department issued a memorandum called "Fascism!" which declared "Fascism is not the easiest thing to identify and analyze; nor, once in power, is it easy to destroy. It is important for our future and that of the world that as many of us as possible understand the causes and practices of fascism, in order to combat it."

"What makes it possible for someone like Trump to attain power and hold it is the acquiescence of people, both voters and politicians, who aren't white supremacists, who sort-of kind-of believe in the rule of law, but are willing to go along with racists and lawbreakers if it seems to serve their interests," wrote New York Times columnist Paul Krugman in an opinion piece on the conviction (and subsequent pardon by the President) of white supremacist sheriff Joe Arpaio.

The authoritarian policies we currently suffer aren't static; Fascism advances in stages. Accommodation, conciliation, even collaboration serve to normalize the crimes against humanity perpetrated in our name. "Even as the Trump/Pence Regime is moving fast, they have not yet fully consolidated their regime, or, as yet, been able to implement their full program," says RefuseFascism.org. "But, this is their objective and it is very possible. It might only take a single serious crisis -- international or domestic -- for this regime to drop the hammer. We do not have much time."

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