Initiatives such as the Sanctuary Cities and the Women’s March, in response to the Donald’s rhetoric, have been characterized as hysterical by some people– with progressives being blamed for working the populace into a fearful frenzy. If this type of criticism came only from Trump supporters, it would not matter much, but it is also being made by people and friends who also dislike Trump.
Disagreements among political friends are expected and welcome, but they could be more productive when they are based on facts and not only on our ideological, political outlook. It is bad enough that we disagree on the issue of climate change, which is harder to prove than whether Trump provoked the frenzy.
Unless you only watch Fox or RT news, it is a fact that Trump mocked a disabled person, encouraged violence in his rallies, spoke of my Mexican brothers on extremely derogatory terms, threatened to deport millions of undocumented persons, threatened to ban Muslims, painted the black community in disparaging terms, displayed a behavior against women worse than Bill Clinton, added to the uncertainty as to what will replace Obamacare , scrambled our understanding of the conduct of international relations, won the support of the KKK and White Nationalists, and the list goes on.
Some of us felt an “existential” threat, and have been hoping that the divisiveness and hate of his campaign will not materialize into actual policies. We have counted on the reasonable Republicans to exert a calming and rational influence on his administration. But the signals so far have not been reassuring, starting with the appointment of a White Nationalist as a senior adviser. The position taken by some of our local friends, questioning the validity of our concerns as hysteria and frenzy is not reassuring neither.
The most consequential expression of this position at the city level so far, was the one taken by the recently elected first Latina council-person. Either due to her own personal political conviction and/or responding to the pressure of some conservatives in her district, she was the only one at the council who opposed considering even a mild watered down resolution protecting immigrants, in spite of our large Latino and Muslim population.
An earlier indication was the reversal of Mark Lopez position on the sanctuary cities. In a Curt Pringle style operation, the OCGOP pressured Mark to send a robo-call retracting his position. They chose to ignore that Disney had likely given the OK : Brandman had stated, at the last candidate forum, that he would support the concept of sanctuary.
Many of us have been patiently waiting for the immigration policies that Trump may implement. We have not made a priority issue yet, it may not have to, of pursuing sanctuary status. We have kept our focus on the local political reforms, to the point that demonstrations against Trump inauguration occurred in Santa Ana and Irvine, but not in Anaheim!
It is not necessarily a bad sign that we did not have our own anti-Trump demonstration, but we may have to become more “truchos” — assertive — and have some help from our reasonable Republican friends to address our concerns. If we can do so, the next district election may be the worst nightmare of our local Steve Bannon from Orange.
If we live in alternative realities, sisters like the one who attended the OC Women’s March will take care of business.
It is time to break the silence.