US Podcasts: Is It Right to Protest Against Trump?

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As the protests grow over Donald Trump’s ban on US entry for citizens of seven mainly-Muslim countries, I spoke with radio outlets on Tuesday about whether it is right to demonstrate inside and outside America.

Discussion ranges includes whether Trump should be given the honor of a State visit to the UK and what challenges his Presidency poses to American values.

See also US Podcast: The Power Grab by Donald Trump and His Advisors Bannon and Miller

Listen to discussion on BBC World Service

I’ve been in the UK for more than 30 years, but my friends and family are back in the US and you never quite leave where you were born.

I grew up with these ideas of freedom, dignity, tolerance, and respect for each other, and I’m witnessing not just a President but also his close advisors who really don’t treat people with respect, who really don’t show dignity, and who are pushing through orders which are probably unconstitutional and illegal — but are trying to steamroller them through.


“A Critical Moment”

I spoke with Phil Upton of BBC Coventry about the situation around Trump’s Muslim Ban and the protests over any State visit by the US President to Britain. That led to an exchange connecting the “power grab” by the Administration (see separate podcast) with the need to speak out.

Listen to discussion

Trump and his advisors are going to try and intimidate their own agencies. They are going to try and intimidate the courts. They have already declared the media an enemy and said it should shut up. They are going to try and quash any idea of questioning of their policies.

This is the most important period since the 1960s and the Civil Rights Movement. Do we allow a group of men to dominate the American system and carry out policies which are damaging to the environment, to race, to gender, to America’s standing in the world? Or do we respond?

In 1963 Martin Luther King went to Washington not to divide people but to say, “I have a dream.” Not for some people. Not for a few. But for all. And I think we are at a moment when Americans are going to reclaim that.


Taking on Trump

I also had a spirited 15-minute discussion with right-wing “shock jock” Jon Gaunt, taking on the declaration that “Trump Protesters Are Crybabies!”

How to handle that? Start with the realities of how the Trump Administration is grabbing power, dissect the chaos and the disinformation over the Muslim Ban, and strip away the casting of blame on the media and “protesters”.

Listen to chat from 34:40 on Talk2Me Radio

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7 COMMENTS

  1. In a free country, you have the right to protest peacefully about anything you feel strongly about. Neither Britain nor the USA are as free as they were, but I think this still holds.
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    You should be free to protest even if you are the only one protesting.
    .
    The civil war in Syria was originally about this right.

  2. No, it betrays a less than total allegiance to the Pentagovernment, which is what Der Trumpenführer stipulated in his inaugural commandments is now obligatory on all Yankistanis and vassals abroad.
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    Do not attempt to sap and impurify the precious bodily fluids of the Trumpian Revolution by crying over trivia, such as a few eggs being cracked to make a tasty omelette, instead get your mind right and join in the glorious MAGA-vision, that ye might be spared alive on the day of His Wrath!

  3. The famous checks and balances of American democracy have failed already one by one.

    1. Failure of the Party:
    The Republican party allowed Trump to run on their ticket without proper vetting. This is not surprising, because the party is greedy for power beyond imagination and would sell its own mother to gain power.

    2. Failure of democratic voting system:
    The election brought a candidate into office who has enormous conflicts of interest the extend of which are unknown because he refuses to publish his tax returns. The security apparatus failed in discovering his ties to Putin’s circle of oligarchs. It is likely that Putin can blackmail Trump. Possibly a deal with shares in Russian oil company has already been done. No telling, because Trump refuses to disclose any information pertaining to his companies.

    3. Failure of the court system:
    Trump is in breach of the constitution while renting the Old Post office as his hotel (just one example). A group has sued him but the case will most likely be thrown out, because the group has no standing = cannot show that Trump has damaged them specifically in any way.

    4. Failure to contain power:
    In the first week in office, Trump has rule by executive order, some, if not most of which are unconstitutional. In particular the order banning entry for people from 7 Muslim majority countries is clearly unconstitutional. The State Department had been gutted of all ranking officers, who would have opposed the ban.
    The acting attorney general Sally Yates, studied the order and came to the conclusion that the Justice Department will not defend it. restrictions for water air and soil protection.
    One hour later she was sacked and replaced by a lapdog of Bannon who reversed her directive. The constitution failed to protect the attorney general in her sworn duty to the constitution. American democracy died on that day (Jan 30. 2017)

    5. Failure to control Homeland Security and Border Control agencies:
    Now these agencies control territory within the US that is virtually off limits to the law. Nobody knows how many people they are holding, nor what their names are. The agencies defied a court order apparently because Bannon ordered them to do so.

    • 1. Failure of the Party:
      The Republican party allowed Trump to run on their ticket without proper vetting.

      What was there to vet? As for greed, the reason the Dems got routed is because of pandering to corporate interests and losing touch with their base.

      2. Failure of democratic voting system:
      Are you suggesting enormous conflicts of interest Hillary Clinton has was not a factor?

      The security apparatus failed in discovering his ties to Putin’s circle of oligarchs.

      Isn’t it amazing how the security apparatus failed to discover what you somehow claim to know?

      It is likely that Putin can blackmail Trump. Possibly a deal with shares in Russian oil company has already been done.

      Really? According to Clapper, there is no evidence to show this. Surely, the FBI and DOJ would have been able to trace the such a large transaction.

      3. Failure of the court system:

      Over a case you yourself admit was thrown out of court?

      4. Failure to contain power:
      In the first week in office, Trump has rule by executive order, some, if not most of which are unconstitutional. In particular the order banning entry for people from 7 Muslim majority countries is clearly unconstitutional.

      According to what authority? I hear that as repugnant as it may seem, the order was legal.

      Yates took a stand based on moral reasons, not constitutional or legal reasons.

      5. Failure to control Homeland Security and Border Control agencies

      6. Failure of the international community. Instead of clearly stating their opposition to Trump’s destructive policies with one voice, single countries are reduced to beg for “special exceptions”.

      Exemptions from what?

      7. Failure of the media:
      A totalitarian regime functions because its subjects cannot distinguish between fiction and fact (Hannah Arendt).

      The US media is a joke. The Wapo has posted all manner of fake stories like the one about Russia hacking the Vermont Electrical Utility.

      The whole Russian hacking BS began as a diversion tactic by the Hillary camp to change the subject from the content of the leaked emails.

  4. 6. Failure of the international community:
    Instead of clearly stating their opposition to Trump’s destructive policies with one voice, single countries are reduced to beg for “special exceptions”. One by one these exceptions are granted, and they fall silent, even though there is absolutely no guarantee that the administration will even uphold its promises.

  5. 7. Failure of the media:
    A totalitarian regime functions because its subjects cannot distinguish between fiction and fact (Hannah Arendt). The Trump regime is consistently engaged to create chaos and diversions, twisting facts, outright lying, contradicting every sane argument by turning it back on itself. The media proved unable to contain and clearly call out this avalanche of falsehood. Most people in the US seem to think that the Muslim ban was necessary to protect the nation against terrorists, when every single security expert has said that this is in no way the case.

    8. The Republican majority in both houses has already used the distractions and confusions to quietly pass legislation to sell 3.3 million acres of federal land, and to roll back some of the most basic environmental restrictions for water air and soil protection.

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