Emergency Meeting Confronts the Danger, Reveals the Potential, Makes the Plans to STOP a Trump/Pence Regime Before It Starts—Interview with Sunsara Taylor
December 20, 2016 | Revolution Newspaper | revcom.us
Atta read the opening of the Call to Action.
Prof. PZ Myers spoke about Trump’s assault on science.
Jeremy Scahill exposed what led up to the fascists Trump and Pence.
Carl Dix broke down the plan to bring forward millions to STOP Trump and Pence.
Sunsara Taylor emceed the evening.
All photos: revcom.us
Editor’s note: A really critical emergency organizing meeting to stop the Trump and Pence regime before it starts took place on December 19 in New York City’s Cooper Union. At least 260 people came out on very short notice. In the wake of the emergency organizing meeting, Revolution talked to Sunsara Taylor, an initiator of Refuse Fascism, and the host/mc of the event, about what was accomplished.
Revolution: You had an incredible breadth and lineup of speakers from many perspectives. People should watch the video of the event! But can you talk about the significance of last night’s meeting and what it accomplished?
Sunsara Taylor: Millions and millions of people feel deep in their gut, deep in their bones, that something terrible has happened with Trump and Pence looming as the incoming regime. But people really need a deeper understanding of just how bad it is—and what we must do, right now, to STOP them before they come to power. So we had a lineup of speakers who brought that alive.
PZ Myers, a science professor in Minnesota, flew out on very short notice. He’s one of the co-initiators of Refuse Fascism. He painted a picture of the outright assault on science and scientific thinking of Trump and Trump's vicious inhumanity.
Fran Luck, the Executive Director of Joy of Resistance Multicultural Feminist Radio at WBAI in New York and a co-initiator of Refuse Fascism, painted a picture of the utter assault on women. Trump, bragging about sexual assault. Pence, with his theocratic determination to obliterate and criminalize abortion and all birth control.
Isabel Cardenas, an immigrant rights leader and co-initiator, sent a video greeting warning people that Trump intends to carry through on his threats and we have to take him seriously and stop him.
Jeremy Scahill, from The Intercept, painted a picture of the war criminals being packed into the Trump cabinet and administration. And the theocrats, like Betsy DeVos who would be head of the Department of Education and utterly destroy it.
Carl Dix spoke about how there has been police terror against Black people. There’s been assaults on women. There’s been attacks on immigrants. But Trump and Pence are putting all that on steroids. And why we call that fascism, and why that must be stopped.
All this, together, was a fuller, deeper wake-up call. And confrontation with truly terrifying truths and the full scope of the fascism this regime is bringing.
Revolution: And the emergency organizing meeting brought out how there is a basis to stop this before it starts, right?
Sunsara Taylor: Yes, this fight is not over! Trump and Pence are illegitimate. They don’t have any right to be running people’s lives, to be running the country, and running the world. They didn’t win the popular vote and even more importantly, they are fascists.
We have 30 days before they’re in office and the way to deal with fascism is to stop it before it starts. To bring forward those millions who are in anguish, who are in outrage, who are in terror right now and translate that into organized resistance. As it says at RefuseFascism.org, “This is not some idle dream but something which could be made a reality if all those who hate what is represented by this fascist regime translate their outrage into firm determination and massive mobilization to create the conditions which make this possible.”
There was the diversity of voices coming together to sound the alarm and sound the resistance. Chase Iron Eyes, another initiator of RefuseFascism, Skyped in from Standing Rock, where he is part of the fight of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe against the Dakota Access Oil Pipeline, and the struggle against genocide of Native peoples.
Immortal Technique, a rapper known for his courageous political stands spoke about what this regime means, including attacks on Blacks, immigrants, and Native people.
Andy Zee, spokesperson for Revolution Books, laid out the power of No! What it means for millions to say “No!” To spread the image and the word and the slogan NO! into every corner of society. How this can and must build until there are millions refusing to leave DC in the days leading up to the scheduled inauguration. Gloria Steinem sent a message. Pastor Doris Johnson from South Queens made a statement on behalf of the Christian community. She talked about how a Trump regime would increase the immiseration of people already living on the edge.
And Imam Aiyub Abdul Baki, of the Justice Committee of the Islamic Leadership in New York, spoke about the terror against Muslims in the wake of this election. And he summoned people to stand together and resist.
So you had quite a diversity of voices. It was emblematic of what is needed, even as it needs to reach far broader. And this was livestreamed through refusefascism.org, and the Huffington Post put it on their Facebook live. Tens of thousands of people tuned in for some portion of the evening. That showed a huge appetite among people for hearing these truths spoken in unvarnished terms, and finding out how to stop this before it starts.
Revolution: So now let’s get into the plan to stop this.
Sunsara Taylor: The main message of the evening was to let people know, look, if you’re horrified, and you’re feeling terrified about this regime of fascism, you are not alone. And frankly, there are millions, and tens of millions of people who feel the way you do. And the mission and the charge for people right now need to be to find their courage and to act decisively, and not prepare to survive or attempt to survive the fascism that is coming, but to act now with every fiber of our being and with everything we’ve got to stop them from coming to power. And so this was being charged, the one overriding theme.
Over the holidays, religious people, secular people and others, need to act. Have salons, fundraising, discussions, and gathering money for the effort to defeat fascism through the holidays.
New Year’s Eve needs to be defiant, outcries in the streets at Trump properties, in Times Square, or at public gathering places across the country, candlelight vigils, mass protests, marches in the streets, drumming, defiant and loud, whatever you have, people come together and steal the headlines. Announce this new year as a year of defiance and resistance. No Fascist New Year!
It is very urgent that we raise thousands, tens of thousands, millions of dollars because January 2 and 3 we want to publish the Call to Action, In the Name of Humanity, We REFUSE To Accept a Fascist America in publications across the country. People who are out there, isolated, by themselves, all alone, feeling that they’re outraged, and they know somebody… and they’re scared, who’s gonna be the first to act. If they know that they’re not alone. And we have a plan. We have a way to act. Take the initiative in whatever way they can. The message is NO! And this is the message on New Year’s Eve, too. NO! No Trump & Pence. No roundups, no deportations, no torture, no sexual assault, no registry, no war crimes, No Trump! No Pence! No Fascism! It’s the power of NO! And this message will go out to the publication ad, the Call to Prominent People on January 2 and 3.
And then we will have two weeks of rolling decentralized protests and resistance, everybody who is active, whatever organization you are part of, religious community, or secular community, atheist community which you are part of, or every student group, or community group. Find your own way to act, everybody saying NO. People should paint NO on their bodies and on their clothes, on posters, lawn signs, bumper stickers and windows. So NO is all over the place.
On January 14 and 15, MLK weekend, people begin to amass in Washington, DC. Especially with the greatly heightened terror that Trump and Pence are threatening against Black people in this country, there needs to be outcry with everybody against that, MLK day weekend in the streets of DC and across the country.
Then January 17, 18, and 19 growing numbers of people flooding DC and not leaving. Marches of millions and millions, day after day, and people staying through the night, and people who can’t be there marching on their state capitols, or their local town squares across the world, we say NO. And the aim is to translate the anguish and the agony and the fear and the outrage into action and defiant resistance, refusal to back down, and the creation of such a massive demand in the streets that everyone in power has to respond to our demand.
Revolution: And people can just start organizing, and they can connect through the refusefascism.org site, right?
Sunsara Taylor: Yes! Go to www.refusefascism.org right now – or call the number: (917) 407-1286. Set up a protest or a vigil right now in your town for New Year's Eve—start wearing and spreading the No! Everywhere, and get everyone you know involved. Donate—give everything you can and be part of raising more funds. Everyone has an urgent and very needed role to play—now is the time to act.
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