Running with the Resistance—on the Ground in DC, Daily Dispatches from Sunsara Taylor
January 10: “No Trump! No KKK! No Fascist USA!”—26 Arrests Protesting Fascist Jeff Sessions; Connecting at Howard University
by Sunsara Taylor
January 11, 2017 | Revolution Newspaper | revcom.us
Day three in DC started very, very early. There's just ten days left till the inauguration that must not happen, so we have a lot to pack in.
Before 6:30 am, Carl Dix and other volunteers were lined up outside the Russell Senate Office Building, waiting for entry into the confirmation hearings of KKK-sympathizer Jeff Sessions, along with activists from the NAACP, immigrant’s rights, Code Pink, Democracy Spring and Howard University.
By 9:30 am, every major network had their cameras rolling inside. Sessions hadn't even made it to his seat before the disruptions began. Two men dressed in fake KKK outfits jumped up and shouted greeting to Sessions: “We're here for you, boy!” As the police roughly dragged them off, in mock shock, they exclaimed, “What? You can't arrest me, I'm white!”
Republican Dixiecrat Richard Shelby gave nauseating testimony about what a “good guy” Sessions is. Susan Collins used a mention of her disagreements with Sessions to buttress her claim that he wasn't a racist dog that everybody knows him to be. She dredged up the fact that Arlen Spector—the pig who gleefully took up the task of skewering Anita Hill 20 years ago on behalf of the Republicans—regrets only one vote in his career and that is when he voted against Sessions in the 80s. With character witnesses like that...
Unable to contain herself at the obscenity of all this inappropriate praise, a woman burst out laughing. Police ejected her from the proceedings. Yes, they banned laughter.
Sessions gave special recognition to the many law enforcement officials he had personally invited. “Law and order” is a code word for state-backed terror and murder against Black people and Brown people, and the sight of all these high-level enforcers rising was chilling. Except, the moment was not theirs. Along with them, a cannabis activist rose and was quickly dragged away by police.
Just as Sessions had returned to his script, naming his family members and doing his best to appear less like the Grim Reaper, Carl Dix's voice rang out: “No Trump! No KKK! No Fascist USA!” Over and over, Carl shouted this, calling on people to flood into the streets of DC starting January 14th to stop the Trump-Pence fascist regime from taking power. All the cameras caught it and this lasted long enough to get the website, www.RefuseFascism.org, in several times.
Within minutes, people began tweeting their recognition and love:
I see you @Carl_Dix! Thank you for standing strong against Jeff Sessions brother. We see you!— Shaun King (@ShaunKing) January 10, 2017
Proud to say I briefly represented Carl Dix in court in NYC Stop & Frisk case. Here he is speaking truth to power at Sessions hearing. https://t.co/CX7QtbScCT— Tom Hillgardner (@TomHillgardner) January 10, 2017
Eventually, the hearing was pulled back to order and Sessions resumed. For about 40 seconds. Then the air was pierced once again with the chant, “No Trump! No KKK! No Fascist USA!” A young woman was being dragged out, but her voice continued calling out the website RefuseFascism.org and calling for people to stop the Trump-Pence regime before it starts.
All day long this went on. Across the hall, students from Howard University and members of the NAACP sat in at Sessions office. Later, a group of immigrants’ rights protesters jumped up and got arrested. In total, we have reports of 26 people arrested—most of them held outrageously long, getting out around midnight and later. One of them is still detained until at least tomorrow afternoon. Two more interruptions from members of the Revolution Club volunteering with RefuseFascism.org to STOP Trump and Pence before they come to power.
Even as many of our people were in jail and some were outside waiting and pushing for their release, we dispatched a small team to go out to a nearby university. They went inside and made announcements in about 10 classes, some that were extremely supportive and responded with applause. Others were discouraged by their professor's negative reaction. I'll be learning and reporting more about this tomorrow, but here is a few video from some of these students:
This evening, Wesley Lowery, author of They Can't Kill Us All, spoke at Potter's House. A couple volunteers went out there with some signs, hundreds of flyers, and other materials. They listened and, during the Q&A they told people about Carl Dix and others still being in jail and called on people to flood into the streets of DC starting Jan 14th and building every day from there. One woman donated $150 on the spot to support those who had suffered arrest.
Meanwhile: The conflicts among the rulers continue to sharpen up and reveal themselves in various ways.
But, as RefuseFascism has emphasized in its FAQs, none of this goes anywhere good without millions rising up to refuse and resist the imposition of a Trump-Pence fascist regime. While this is not where we are yet at, and while this will require a tremendous leap after tremendous leap in a few short days and unrelentingly continuing after that until we prevail, today's robust protests and arrests at the Sessions hearing are good harbinger. They both reflect a rising mood of rebelliousness and refusal among the people, and they can help usher in and broaden out such a mood very quickly.
Now is the time to seize this new momentum, as well as the major full-page ad in tomorrow's Washington Post, and really galvanize, organize, and mobilize hundreds... into thousands... and millions in the coming days... to STOP this FASCIST, and therefore ILLEGITIMATE, regime before it comes to power.
All but one of the protesters has now been released. It is outrageous that anyone is still being held and we will post numbers to call to support him tomorrow. To close out tonight, let me give you Carl Dix, speaking right as he stepped out of jail:
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