6 ways progressives can fight back against Trump
Election night 2016 left progressives shaken. America elected a bigot as president of the United States. Despite the results, we can still fight Donald Trump’s hateful, reckless agenda.
At CREDO, where I serve as CEO, we are executing an aggressive response to Trump that focuses on protecting vulnerable communities at risk, delegitimizing an unqualified candidate who was opposed by a majority of voters, obstructing Trump’s hateful and aggressive agenda and going on the counterattack wherever possible. Our community of more than 4.7 million CREDO activists is mobilized and already fighting Trump. We know firsthand that individual actions can avalanche into large-scale transformation.
We also contribute more than $150,000 every month to progressive nonprofits from revenue generated by CREDO Mobile, our progressive phone company. That adds up to more than $1.6 million this year and over $81 million over our 30+ years in business.
My top priority is to protect America’s least-privileged and most-vulnerable people. In many ways, I feel like I’ve lived the American dream. I grew up poor with a single mother of four kids. She fought every day to put food on the table and build a better life for us. Thanks to her, I was able to achieve success in engineering and the telecom industry.
That path allowed me to see my own privilege and understand how doors that I walked through in the past were less open for those of different races and ethnicities. I am afraid that even those small openings are slamming shut.
At CREDO, we have to fight back against Trump on multiple fronts. Here’s how:
1. Do Not Wait and See
Some progressive say that we should “wait and see” what happens. Haven’t we already seen what’s coming?
Trump has already named Breitbart News Chairman Steve Bannon, a white supremacist cheerleader, as his chief strategist. Trump’s other appointments thus far have demonstrated a lack of support for veterans, a willingness to destroy Medicare, intolerance of immigrant rights, civil rights and LGBTQ equality, dismissal of a woman’s right to choose and a wholesale disrespect for the Constitution and the will of the people.
The Trump agenda is clear enough. Let’s anticipate the worst and take preventative actions.
2. Protect the Vulnerable in Your Daily Life
That means forcefully speaking out against racism, xenophobia and sexism whenever and wherever we witness it. It’s often easier to bow our heads and quietly ignore an incident in front of us, believing it’s better not to get involved. That is no longer acceptable. Now is the time to engage. This fight needs your voice and your courage. Stand up for coworkers, classmates, friends and, especially, strangers.
3. Take a Stand on Immigration
Pressure your local government to provide sanctuary to undocumented immigrants. Contact your officials directly or petition to make your hometown a “sanctuary city.” Sign CREDO Action’s petition calling for mayors and city councils to stand with immigrants against Trump’s hate and get involved locally to protect immigrants in your community. City and state governments need political pressure to do the right thing.
4. Tell Congress to Fight Trump
On the national level, Democrats in Congress need to stand up to Trump. Some of our elected leaders have indicated a willingness to make deals and legislate with him. This only normalizes his racism and the bigotry of his supporters. Not only will this harm people we care about, but it will also inevitably lead to progressive defeat at the ballot box. Contact or petition your congresspeople: Tell them not to compromise.
5. Make Personal Donations to Progressive Nonprofits
Under a Trump presidency, the work of progressive nonprofits will be more important than ever and more at risk, so they need your support more than ever. This month at CREDO, we’ve identified three progressive causes of vital importance right now: Advancing the movement for black lives, fighting for climate justice and standing up to Trump’s hate. In December, we’re going to donate $300,000 (roughly double our normal monthly donation) to 15 nonprofits handpicked for their impact on these issues.
- Black Alliance for Just Immigration
- BlackOUT Collective
- Black Youth Project 100
- Center for Media Justice
- Southerners on New Ground
- Appalachian Voices
- Climate Solutions
- Honor the Earth
- Louisiana Bucket Brigade
- Florida Immigrant Coalition
- Muslim Advocates
- National Day Laborer Organizing Network
- New Orleans Workers’ Center for Racial Justice
You can vote on how we distribute the funds this month or consider a personal donation to these groups.
We won’t stop there, though. Every month, we nominate three progressive causes for CREDO Donations in the areas of women’s rights, civil rights, voting rights, economic justice, peace and environmental justice. If you’re interested in more great progressive groups to support with a personal donation and want to know who CREDO has supported over the last few years, we’ve got the full list, which includes Planned Parenthood, Rainforest Action Network, 350.org, LGBTQ Task Force, Color Of Change, United We Dream Action, Social Security Works and Amnesty International.
6. Be the Media
The 2016 election showed that we can’t count on traditional corporate media to do its job. The desire to chase profit invariably wins out over the responsibility to inform the public. Together, we must be the media and push our message out, both online and offline. When you discover injustices that mainstream media has ignored, share them. Landmark fights, like the Dakota Access Pipeline battle, spread among activists first and major news organizations later.
We need to voice our message over, under, around and through the hate-filled rhetoric we have come to expect. Push back on the mainstream media organizations that will work to normalize this dark time in our history.
We Can Do This
Use every tool at your disposal to fight Trump’s hateful agenda and counter acts of violence. We have a tough four years ahead, but I am confident that together we can make a positive difference. Together, we can fight back against hate and win.