Scenes from around the country
From the NYC Chapter of Refuse Fascism |
Important protests were held across the country on the eve of Congress’s vote on impeachment. In many cities, RefuseFascism.org mobilized contingents to strengthen these protests and to bring in the challenge — and organize people into — the #OUTNOW Movement whose mission is to drive the Trump/Pence regime from power through mass nonviolent protests in the streets. Here is a sampling of photos from around the country, and a report from the New York City chapter of RefuseFascism.org on the night of protest.
Several thousand people gathered in Times Square and marched thru Manhattan manifesting their hatred for what Donald Trump represents and their desire to see him removed from power. The march was organized to support the Democrats’ attempt to impeach Trump and remove him from office for endangering the security of the country with his actions involving the Ukraine and abuse of power by refusing to recognize the legitimacy of the impeachment process. But many people were out there for much more than what is concentrated narrowly in the articles of impeachment. People were also there because they have a deep sense of the danger of letting this Trump presidency go forward, and that there are larger problems that are not included in these articles of impeachment.
This was made clear by their response to the #OUTNOW contingent. 15-20 of us marched into the middle of the growing crowd at the beginning chanting: “Danger, Danger! There are fascists in the White House; It’s up to us to drive them out!” “Don’t Tell Us It Can’t Happen Here, Don’t Tell Us Wait Another Year; Trump/Pence, Out Now!” and “This system is outrageous, it puts our kids in cages! Trump, Pence, Out Now!” Then we did a mic check and got dozens of people amplifying the words of Sunsara Taylor as she laid out that: 1) This was about way more than Donald Trump-there’s a whole fascist regime that we were up against; 2) That the crimes of this regime go way beyond Ukraine. There’s the concentration camps on the border, the Muslim ban, attacks on the right to abortion & LGBTQ rights, the unleashing of naked white supremacy and more—there’s a whole fascist agenda that needs to be stopped; 3) Things are on a trajectory for impeachment to be squashed in the Senate and Trump to remain in power-but this can be changed by people pouring into the streets and staying in the streets in massive, sustained non-violent protest, like people did in Puerto Rico and are doing in India, Hong Kong and many other countries; and 4) that people need to join with #OUTNOW! to inspire and mobilize this kind of outpouring.
It is RIGHT to be in the streets tonite! But don’t let it be just 1 day.
Mass protest in Puerto Rico, South Korea, Hong Kong… in India now against Modi.
Americans: stop being so f*cking lazy! Stop waiting 4 a savior!
— Trump/Pence Must Go NOW—#OutNow (@RefuseFascism) December 17, 2019
As we continued chanting while people waited for the march to begin, many, many people began to take up our chants. At times other chants were raised. Some of them, like “Country over party,” reflected a bad direction that people’s willingness to be in the streets could be taken in. The impeachment battle is in essence a fight at the top of society over two sharply different approaches to accomplishing the same goal – keeping US global domination in effect. Calling for “Country over party” amounts to saying to people who hate what Trump represents that they should act in support of an alternate approach to maintaining US domination instead of acting in the interests of humanity. We responded to this chant with “Humanity First, Not America First.”
Other chants included: “What do we want? Impeachment. When do we want it? Now!” and “Impeach and Remove.” Many people took up both these chants and the chants #OUTNOW! was leading. When the march took off, if became clear that the #OUTNOW! chants resonated with a lot of the people who were in the streets. As we moved thru different sections of the march getting the #OUTNOW! flyer for January out, we heard different groups of people doing our chants on their own.
It was important that the protest in NYC drew thousands of people and that many who came really did want to hear, and responded to what Refuse Fascism was saying. But things have to go beyond what was manifested in this march. The numbers need to grow, and rather than people coming out once and going back home or coming out when called to support what the Democrats are doing, people need to come into the streets and stay in the streets. As Sunsara put it in a mic check we did at the end of the march: “People need to stop being so lazy and do like people in Puerto Rico, India and other countries have done and are doing.” She also called for people to join with the #OUTNOW! movement and be part of forging the massive sustained non violent protest that can create the kind of political protest that’s needed to really drive the Trump/Pence regime from power.
— Katie Holten 🌱 (@katieholten) December 17, 2019