Actually? We DO Need to Be in the Streets ... NOW!

Trump and MAGA-Thugs Not Backing Down or Going Away.
The Fascist Forces Have a Plan to Steal the Election, and They Are Working It...



Editors’ Note: While this article was published before Biden's Electoral College victory was called by news outlets, we are reposting it because the basic theme remains as relevant as ever in terms of what is urgently needed.

Trump is not quitting. The fascist forces under the command of Trump and Pence—in the government and in the streets—are not quitting. If the election showed anything, it has shown that these forces are deeply dug into this society and will not be vanquished without a huge struggle. Fighting all the way through to drive out this regime is going to be a huge part of that struggle.

They have been stealing, and they are continuing to steal, this election: this is hardly a secret. As it appears, they have a two-pronged plan, and they have been working on it and they are doing it right in front of our faces.

Part one: Suppress the vote. Prevent the votes of hundreds of thousands of people, disproportionately Black and Latino people from the cities, from being counted. Tie up the results in the courts that they have packed, all the way up to the Supreme Court, and the state legislatures that they have gerrymandered... create confusion, doubt, delay, and chaos... and then use holes and ambiguities in the law to overturn the results. (And by the way, this didn’t just start—go here to find out how they have been suppressing the votes of Black, Latino and other people of color for months, and throughout history. See here and here.)

Part two: Dominate the streets and public squares with their fascist-MAGA goons and thugs. Already, they have been mobbing the people who are counting the ballots in Detroit, Philadelphia, and Phoenix—and brandishing automatic rifles to threaten vote-counters in Phoenix. These are the ones who waved around their assault rifles when they came into state legislatures in the spring, and who used those rifles (or their cars) to kill unarmed demonstrators against police murder and racism in the summer... rampaging with escalated brutality since the Republican National Convention. As we go to press, Trump is tweeting “Stop the Count!” He aims to both suppress the vote, and mobilize his thugs who he had earlier ordered to “stand by” in a presidential debate.* Left unopposed, the fascist MAGA forces aided by the police will aim to create so much intimidating violence and chaos that key power centers and institutions decide to back, or go along with, Trump’s theft of the election.

That’s their plan. Totally illegitimate; utterly fascist; and likely to work... if not opposed by massive nonviolent action in the streets.

Think the fascist plan can’t happen? Read some history, and see how George W. Bush became president in 2000, with considerably less threat and mayhem than Trump routinely summons forth. Or more recently, remember how the cops and fascists used violence to suppress the beautiful rising against police terror and white supremacy, redefining terms from the horrors of white supremacy to “law and order,” with Trump using this to come close to actually winning the election outright.

The Idea That We Should NOT Be in the Streets Is Suicidal

Some political forces have told people to stay out of the streets in order not to “play into Trump’s narrative of confusion, chaos and uncertainty.” On that basis, they pulled out of or did not build the already-called-for demonstrations of last night. They had previously called for these protests post-Election Night to prevent Trump from stealing the election.

Reality check: Biden has not assumed the presidency. As of Thursday morning, Biden has not even won the vote. Meanwhile Trump and Pence have not given up, and now they’ve sent their dogs into the streets and lawyers into the courts, aiming to seize the initiative and dictate terms.

NO! Recognizing the dire threat posed by this fascist regime, we cannot afford to play a “waiting game.” We need to come in and stay in the public square NOW, growing every day and night, in massive demonstrations that are nonviolent, sustained, and refuse to back down till this regime is gone. That—massive, sustained, nonviolent demonstrations—is the key way that we can reset the terms of debate, exposing the illegitimacy of the fascists and their moves, winning public opinion to the righteous and legitimate side of driving out the regime. This was done at the beginning of the summer in the beautiful rising against police terror and institutional racism, in a beginning but significant way that showed the potential power of this path; we need to do that again, against this monstrous regime that threatens the future itself.

WE need to be making the case—that the voter suppression, the threats (and carrying out) of violence, and all the rest that Trump, Pence, and the rest of them have already done and  are continuing to do right now is illegitimate ... that the white supremacy, the patriarchal theocracy and the fascism are even more illegitimate... and that this regime must GO.

If you think we should rely on the norms and institutions of this system and not rock the boat, please ask yourself: how did that work when you put your hopes in the Russia investigation? In the blue wave? In the impeachment? It didn’t—and now we really can’t afford not to learn the lesson, especially with the fascists in control of state legislatures and key sections of the judiciary.

We Need Massive, Sustained, Nonviolent Action NOW, Demanding Trump/Pence Out Now!

Can’t work? The civil rights movement of the ’60s did it up against the forerunners of these goons and thugs of today. The moral and political force of the tens of thousands standing up to that inspired people here and worldwide. The process they started raised sharp questions about the legitimacy of this country and its system at home and around the world... and by doing so they changed the terms of debate in society, they forced the institutions and power centers of society—from Congress to the courts—to behave “differently,” to bend and concede to their demands. Something similar is necessary and possible right now, through mass political resistance, with the demand and outcome being the removal of this regime.

Conclusion: If we don’t get rid of this regime NOW, when we can... if they come back stronger and force their way into another term... then shame on us. Some progressive people are already talking about “all the work we can begin after the election.” That rings hollow indeed in the face of this genocidal racist staying in power! The first and crucial step—the work we need to do now—is to finish the job of driving out this regime, with mass sustained non-violent protests.

That is the most pressing and absolutely necessary task right now in the badly needed top-to-bottom transformation of a society so rotten that it could produce a Trump... a dangerous, inhuman fascist who won one election and is too damn close to winning or stealing another.

We’ve got to finish THIS job: removing this fascist regime. Humanity is counting on us.


* During the first presidential debate, when asked if he would condemn the white supremacist fascist group the Proud Boys—a group which has been behind violent attacks on protests around the country—Trump directly addressed them from the stage, telling them to “stand back… and stand by.”  [back]

Trump told the Proud Boys to “stand by.” Here, Proud Boys in the streets of Portland, Oregon, September 26, 2020. (Photo: AP)



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