Saturday, December 24, 2016

Christmas at Ground Zero, Letter #26

Nagasakibomb.jpg

By Charles Levy from one of the B-29 Superfortresses used in the attack. - http://www.archives.gov/research/military/ww2/photos/images/ww2-163.jpg National Archives image (208-N-43888), Public Domain, Link


12/24/16

Dear Assailant-in-Chief,

The above photo is from the attack on Nagasaki, one of only two nuclear weapons that have ever been used in war, both of course by the United States. Like most people alive today, I grew up under the shadow of that decision, and the constant threat of all-out nuclear war.  It has shaped our policies and decisions for the last seventy-one years.  It especially dictates our relationship with China, our relationship with Russia...basically, all of the things you've decided to shake up. 

In the summer of 1945, President Harry Truman made these observations: 

We have discovered the most terrible bomb in the history of the world. It may be the fire destruction prophesied in the Euphrates Valley era, after Noah and his fabulous ark. Anyway, we think we have found the way to cause a disintegration of the atom. An experiment in the New Mexico desert was startling -- to put it mildly. Thirteen pounds of the explosive caused a crater six hundred feet deep and twelve hundred feet in diameter, knocked over a steel tower a half mile away, and knocked men down ten thousand yards away. The explosion was visible for more than two hundred miles and audible for forty miles and more. This weapon is to be used against Japan between now and August 10.
The thought process in that paragraph is peculiar.  He predicts apocalypse from this weapon, then casually states the intention to use it.  He also declares a stipulation to aim at "military objectives and soldiers and sailors... not women and children" even though the impossibility of making that distinction with a city-destroying weapon should have been clear, was certainly clear. You can see him justifying it to himself by describing the "Japs" as "savages, ruthless, merciless and fanatic"...the same language, more or less, used to justify the internment camps.  A note for you and your spokes-people:  Sane and moral persons generally view the internment of Japanese-Americans as a blot on our nation's honor. Neither the first not the last to be sure, but definitely not something to ever be emulated.  Or mentioned favorably in an interview. 

It's not quite an excuse, but it's possible that the people making the decision to use that weapon just weren't able to wrap their heads around how destructive it really was.  It's the difference between knowing a thing intellectually and knowing it in your gut.  I note in passing that "gut feelings" aren't that useful either when they are wrong.

In any case, now we do know how horrifying those weapons are, and have built many more terrible ones. But we also live in an era where you and others can observe the destruction of Aleppo with a dispassionate eye, and turn away the refugees pouring out of Syria....because ISIS, I guess.  All those Muslims are savages, amirite?  "Ruthless, merciless, and fanatic."  Never mind any distinctions between, say, a weapon-toting actual terrorist and a child.  You have to confuse the distinction between aggressor and victim, because otherwise how can you convince everyone that a Syrian toddler is a security risk, but you playing chicken with the other nuclear powers is just fine? This relies on your audience being stupid or evil; people whose minds can encompass the destruction of a building because they saw it on television, but who can't imagine the destruction of an entire city; or else don't care because the city isn't their own.  Except, it could be, couldn't it?  That's what mutually assured destruction is about.

I'm neither stupid nor evil, and my imagination works just fine. So does my moral compass. 

Truman was a strange man, perceptive and blind at the same time. Speaking of the destruction of Berlin, he had this to say:
What a pity that the human animal is not able to put his moral thinking into practice. We saw old men, old women, young women, children from tots to teens carrying packs, pushing carts, pulling carts, evidently ejected by the conquerors and carrying what they could of their belongings to nowhere in particular....I fear that machines are ahead of morals by some centuries and when morals catch up perhaps there'll be no reason for any of it.
I hope not. But we are only termites on a planet and maybe when we bore too deeply into the planet there'll be a reckoning. Who knows?

Yours sincerely,

Sara Amis
Citizen of these United States of America


From Dorine Jennette:

PLEASE JOIN ME IN WRITING THE ASSAILANT-IN-CHIEF
Please join me in bombarding the Assailant-in-Chief with letters: https://www.donaldjtrump.com/contact. I will write to him every day through his first 100 days in office, maybe longer if momentum holds. I am asking others to write just ONE letter. Let's not just vent our grief to each other--let's speak truth to power together. Please WRITE and please SHARE this plan with your friends. Pass it on!
You do not need to be a woman or an assault survivor to address the Assailant-in-Chief as such. If you are a man who has a daughter, a sister, a wife, a woman colleague or friend you respect, or a mother (hint: that last one is all of you!), then you have something to say to the Assailant-in-Chief. Your letter might be a brief one-liner. That's great! Please send it! Women need our allies now. Here's the link to DJT's contact page--this might take you one minute or less! https://www.donaldjtrump.com/contact
Or, maybe you will start a related project addressing any one of the many groups Trump has already harmed . . .
As we talk with each other, let's break the bubble and also send our complaints straight to the source. He won't read them and won't care if he does, so probably this is a placeholder action while we figure out what we're really going to do . . . but it's something.

Dorine's posts can be found here:  https://www.facebook.com/dorine.jennette

PS from Sara:  I've taken to just tweeting these at him.  He's not going to read them anyway, but I might as well use the platform that he actually responds to.  *snort*

Friday, December 23, 2016

Amendments and Oppressions, Letter #25


12/23/16

Dear Assailant-in-Chief,

Article 5 in the Constitution describes how it may be amended.  We all know, or we should, that the first ten amendments were proposed and ratified more or less immediately.  But even without those there is an inherent sense of the Constitution as a "living document," one that might require tinkering on from time to time.  I have some thoughts about how it might be altered to address some current problems....The gap between the popular vote and the Electoral College results is actually not nearly as high on my list of priorities as gerrymandering, corporate personhood and money as speech.  I think if any one of those were changed, the others would be easier to fix, and the problems with the Electoral College would either become a matter of consensus or take care of themselves. 

That reminds me.  I saw a clip of Mitt Romney on Jimmy Kimmell and to be honest, I still think he comes off super awkward and as if he's trying too hard to be personable.  I want to like him better since he showed a little personality and backbone but I just can't.  I do know that when he made that "corporations are people" remark that what he meant was that corporations are made up of people...but the problem there isn't actually that corporations are run by alien artificial intelligences, unless he knows something we don't and is holding out on us. (It would explain a lot, honestly). The problem is that some people's free speech shouldn't be unfairly outweighed by that of others.  Most especially, some people should not be able to exert economic pressure on others to vote or donate or support one candidate over another, and that is precisely what the Citizens United decision allows corporations to do...one of its most pernicious, and least well-known, effects.  Being able to achieve your political goals because you have more money than the other guy is fundamentally undemocratic, and the contradiction, unless corrected, is going to tear us apart.

There's a common blind spot among the rightward and libertarian-leaning, in my experience:  They think oppression can and does only come from government.  Whereas in my experience, government mainly leaves me alone and is sometimes helpful but the most oppressive forces in my life have been 1) destructive social norms, especially sexism and heteronormativity, and 2) my employers.  I suspect that is common to many people on the left, and may be the real dividing line politically.  That difference is not irreconcilable so long as both sides grant the validity of the other's point of view...but that kind of good faith from conservatives is in short supply.  And since you are the walking avatar of bad faith on this subject in particular as well as many others, I do not hold out much expectation of improvement.  Like Michelle Obama, I am not hopeful.

Yours sincerely,

Sara Amis
Citizen of these United States of America


From Dorine Jennette:

PLEASE JOIN ME IN WRITING THE ASSAILANT-IN-CHIEF
Please join me in bombarding the Assailant-in-Chief with letters: https://www.donaldjtrump.com/contact. I will write to him every day through his first 100 days in office, maybe longer if momentum holds. I am asking others to write just ONE letter. Let's not just vent our grief to each other--let's speak truth to power together. Please WRITE and please SHARE this plan with your friends. Pass it on!
You do not need to be a woman or an assault survivor to address the Assailant-in-Chief as such. If you are a man who has a daughter, a sister, a wife, a woman colleague or friend you respect, or a mother (hint: that last one is all of you!), then you have something to say to the Assailant-in-Chief. Your letter might be a brief one-liner. That's great! Please send it! Women need our allies now. Here's the link to DJT's contact page--this might take you one minute or less! https://www.donaldjtrump.com/contact
Or, maybe you will start a related project addressing any one of the many groups Trump has already harmed . . .
As we talk with each other, let's break the bubble and also send our complaints straight to the source. He won't read them and won't care if he does, so probably this is a placeholder action while we figure out what we're really going to do . . . but it's something.

Dorine's posts can be found here:  https://www.facebook.com/dorine.jennette

PS from Sara:  I've taken to just tweeting these at him.  He's not going to read them anyway, but I might as well use the platform that he actually responds to.  *snort*

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Republican Forms of Government, Letter #24


12/21/16

Dear Assailant-in-Chief,

I'm baaaack.  I had to take a little time to finish up my grading.  I teach, as I believe I mentioned before, and it's the end of fall semester.

Did you know that one of your alt-Reich fanboys made a "professor watch list" website?  I don't think it's having quite the effect he was imagining, because the general reaction from academia has been "PICK ME PICK ME!"  It turns out we take all that intellectual liberty stuff seriously.  So do climate scientists and the people at the Department of Energy, as you have discovered.  Personally, I feel he's doing us all a favor...because if the kind of puling whiner who gets upset when expected to read or discuss ideas they don't already agree with avoids my classes as a result of me being on that list, I WIN.  College is where you learn things and encounter ideas you may not have been exposed to before.  The process may make you uncomfortable...and in fact, it probably should.  If you can't handle it, stay home.

Surprised to hear this from someone who has zero problem with the concept of "safe space" and trigger warnings?  You shouldn't be.  "Safe" in this situation means "safe from being harassed or assaulted," not "safe from having to think new thoughts."  Trigger warnings are so we CAN discuss very difficult topics in class...like rape, abuse, and other forms of violence...without springing them on people out of nowhere. Conservatives don't like trigger warnings because they think the appropriate place and time to discuss those topics is nowhere and never.

At any rate, I left off with Article 3 of the Constitution.  That bring us to Article 4.  This one contains the "full faith and credit" clause, as well as a following one that says "The Citizens of each State shall be entitled to all Privileges and Immunities of Citizens in the several States."   I always thought that these should mean that if you get married in one state your marriage is legal elsewhere, OBVIOUSLY, but apparently that's something to argue about in some people's minds.  Some dogs growl over mangers, I suppose.

In Section 2 there's a stipulation that fugitive slaves (and indentures, as it covers both) can't escape to another state and be freed; of course we know that they did, as this measure was extraordinarily unpopular in the free states.  But it also meant they had to live in a state of more or less constant wariness...but then, any black person in antebellum America had to be wary, because the free-born might be kidnapped and sold away just as easily.  There are other fossil imprints of the attempt to patch up the fundamental conflict between the slave-owning and free states that remain here and there in the Constitution...such as the Electoral College.

Section 4 says among other things that the Federal government "shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government."   I would like to remind you and other members of your party (especially the ones in North Carolina, but possibly also in Michigan and a few other places) that what is meant here is NOT a government by Republicans, but a government based on "republican" principles...among which are consent of the governed.  One of the ways in which that has historically been asserted is that the majority, rather than unanimity, rules, in order to prevent tyranny by a minority.

Here is another thing to keep in mind:  You are not in the majority.  You did not win the popular vote.  You can lie and claim you did every day from now until the day you are voted out or impeached, and it still won't be true.  You know it, and I know it, and the rest of the world knows it.  Even the people who really want to believe you know deep down that it isn't so. 

“Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored.”  - Aldous Huxley

"In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act." - George Orwell

Also, because I am from Georgia:  "The truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it." - Flannery O'Connor.

Yours sincerely,

Sara Amis
Citizen of these United States of America


From Dorine Jennette:

PLEASE JOIN ME IN WRITING THE ASSAILANT-IN-CHIEF
Please join me in bombarding the Assailant-in-Chief with letters: https://www.donaldjtrump.com/contact. I will write to him every day through his first 100 days in office, maybe longer if momentum holds. I am asking others to write just ONE letter. Let's not just vent our grief to each other--let's speak truth to power together. Please WRITE and please SHARE this plan with your friends. Pass it on!
You do not need to be a woman or an assault survivor to address the Assailant-in-Chief as such. If you are a man who has a daughter, a sister, a wife, a woman colleague or friend you respect, or a mother (hint: that last one is all of you!), then you have something to say to the Assailant-in-Chief. Your letter might be a brief one-liner. That's great! Please send it! Women need our allies now. Here's the link to DJT's contact page--this might take you one minute or less! https://www.donaldjtrump.com/contact
Or, maybe you will start a related project addressing any one of the many groups Trump has already harmed . . .
As we talk with each other, let's break the bubble and also send our complaints straight to the source. He won't read them and won't care if he does, so probably this is a placeholder action while we figure out what we're really going to do . . . but it's something.

Dorine's posts can be found here:  https://www.facebook.com/dorine.jennette

PS from Sara:  I've taken to just tweeting these at him.  He's not going to read them anyway, but I might as well use the platform that he actually responds to.  *snort*

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Aid and Comfort to Our Enemies, Letter #23


12/11/16

Dear Assailant-in-Chief,

Article III of the Constitution first describes the Supreme Court, its duties and powers.  That is a matter of concern to me because, after the Republicans held up President Obama's appointment of Merrick Garland...behavior which should have, in a less gerrymandered and more righteous world, gotten them all bounced out on their ears...that means there's still a seat open.

I have tried to reassure myself by thinking, "How bad could it possibly be?"  Then I look at the team of miscreant plutocrats, scoundrels and "plunder-monkeys" (thank you, Stephen King) that are your Cabinet picks and I fear for my country.

..About that. Section 3 goes on to define treason against the United States as consisting in "levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort."

And look here, it turns out that Russia meddled in the election in your favor, and it has become something of a matter of discussion just now.  The question to my mind isn't really whether treason has been committed, but by how many people, and how treasonous is it?  When considering an antidote, it's important to know the strength of the poison.

First, I hesitate to over-broaden the definition of war, as that is what leads to defining criminals as "enemy combatants" and deciding that no rules apply to their treatment whatsoever.  Wiser scholars than I can argue over whether interfering in our elections is an act of war; in any case, they certainly weren't doing it for our benefit.  They are enemies in that sense.  But as Kuns argues in the article I linked to, this isn't new.  Birds gonna fly, fish gonna swim, Russia gonna Russ, and the more important question is how we react to it.  Spoiler alert:  Collusion is the wrong answer.

Are you treasonous?  I don't know, but you do.  Were you just the beneficiary of actions the Russians took to influence our election, or did you coordinate with them?  Circumstantial evidence suggests the latter, considering how you repeated Russian state news' talking points sometimes before they even posted them.  There's also your noted fondness for fake news...and the evidence that a lot of that fake news was produced by, you guessed it, the Russians, for the purpose of confusing people about the truth and influencing the election.  But the definition of treason requires not that they helped you, but that you gave aid and comfort to them.  The Republican platform was certainly altered in their favor, for whatever that's worth.  What else? That's something that would need proving, and the Constitution requires two witnesses to testify against you.  (Watch your back).  Impeachment, I note, is less difficult to try than treason, since the definition of what makes it impeachable is at the discretion of Congress.  Well, that makes it less difficult or more difficult, depending.

There are two people I am more concerned about actually.  Mitch McConnell evidently blocked the information presented by the CIA, NSA, and other intelligence agencies from being made public, because it would affect his political fortunes...and James Comey, knowing it, decided to go public not with that information but with a trivial examination of Anthony "Coincidental Last Name" Weiner's laptop that had some of Hillary Clinton's e-mails on it. 

That is to say, those two men, having been presented with evidence that a hostile foreign power was attempting to influence an American presidential election, decided to do what they could to make sure that it worked.

Yours sincerely,

Sara Amis
Citizen of these United States of America


From Dorine Jennette:

PLEASE JOIN ME IN WRITING THE ASSAILANT-IN-CHIEF
Please join me in bombarding the Assailant-in-Chief with letters: https://www.donaldjtrump.com/contact. I will write to him every day through his first 100 days in office, maybe longer if momentum holds. I am asking others to write just ONE letter. Let's not just vent our grief to each other--let's speak truth to power together. Please WRITE and please SHARE this plan with your friends. Pass it on!
You do not need to be a woman or an assault survivor to address the Assailant-in-Chief as such. If you are a man who has a daughter, a sister, a wife, a woman colleague or friend you respect, or a mother (hint: that last one is all of you!), then you have something to say to the Assailant-in-Chief. Your letter might be a brief one-liner. That's great! Please send it! Women need our allies now. Here's the link to DJT's contact page--this might take you one minute or less! https://www.donaldjtrump.com/contact
Or, maybe you will start a related project addressing any one of the many groups Trump has already harmed . . .
As we talk with each other, let's break the bubble and also send our complaints straight to the source. He won't read them and won't care if he does, so probably this is a placeholder action while we figure out what we're really going to do . . . but it's something.

Dorine's posts can be found here:  https://www.facebook.com/dorine.jennette

PS from Sara:  I've taken to just tweeting these at him.  He's not going to read them anyway, but I might as well use the platform that he actually responds to.  *snort*

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Article II of the Constitution, Letter #22


12/10/16

Dear Assailant-in-Chief,


Article II of the Constitution outlines how a President is chosen, what the various duties and powers of the office are, and the reasons for which a President may be removed from office.  I recommend that you read it carefully. 

The tradition of the Electoral College harks from a time when instant communication was not possible; the use of delegates for such things as framing the Constitution in the first place had already been established.  Originally the idea was to send people you trusted to make a sensible choice; the rise of party politics has led to the present situation where party loyalty is held to be the most important qualification. Notably, nothing in the Constitution holds the states to a particular means of choosing electors; the current "winner takes all" method is common but not universal practice.  I point this out because, as we all know, if the Electoral College hewed more closely to the popular vote, not only would you not be the President-elect, but we would have probably had President Gore rather than President Bush.  I know you've made the assertion that if the system were different you would have campaigned differently and won anyway, but you also claimed that millions of people voted illegally.  That is, since you have established that you are full of shit, I don't place any credence in anything you have to say at any point.

There are, you will find, consequences to being a baldfaced liar.  I suppose you've never been held to account very much, what with being born with enough money to cushion you from most anything.  But you are about to step into a role where lying to the public has consequences, lying to your political allies (and enemies) has consequences, and most especially lying to other heads of state has consequences.  I know this is a little hard for you to believe, because it has worked out so far.  But, see...your base might believe you no matter what, but they are not in the majority.  Don't forget that.

Because while laws are not your job, treaties are.  And nobody with any sense is going to believe you when you say you are going to do something.  So that kind of puts you at a disadvantage in the whole treaty-making endeavor.  For much the same reason that nobody trusts you in business (which is why you license your name rather than actually build anything any more), nobody is going to trust you to make deals for this country.  The biggest thing you ran on, like most of the other promises you made, is a thing you can't do.  Not in this case because it's not within the President's responsibilities, but because it's not within your character.

Likewise, your power as President to "recommend" action to Congress, and to appoint judges, ambassadors, and the rest, relies in great measure upon other people's faith in you.  All of the warnings that you weren't fit to hold the office weren't just people being mean; it's also a realistic assessment of how your, shall we say, combative and mercurial style is going to actually work.  That is aside from the epic disaster and transparent corruption of your actual choices.  I don't know whether I should hope that we minimize the damage, or that you fuck up so spectacularly that people will get up off their asses and do something about it. The far edge of that latter scenario worries me quite a bit, as there's no particular guarantee that "doing something" will automatically mean "doing better."  But since President Bush was not a sufficient imperative even though the world economy nearly ran off a cliff, if you must be the herald of transformation, so be it, I suppose.  May we all survive, especially the defenseless and downtrodden...preferably them.  The field mice of this world have my sympathy.  The likes of you, not so much.

All of this would be funny if it weren't so dire.  I love my country.  To paraphrase a friend, I didn't realize how much until presented with the spectacle of a bunch of jackals trying to destroy it.

Yours sincerely,

Sara Amis
Citizen of these United States of America


From Dorine Jennette:

PLEASE JOIN ME IN WRITING THE ASSAILANT-IN-CHIEF
Please join me in bombarding the Assailant-in-Chief with letters: https://www.donaldjtrump.com/contact. I will write to him every day through his first 100 days in office, maybe longer if momentum holds. I am asking others to write just ONE letter. Let's not just vent our grief to each other--let's speak truth to power together. Please WRITE and please SHARE this plan with your friends. Pass it on!
You do not need to be a woman or an assault survivor to address the Assailant-in-Chief as such. If you are a man who has a daughter, a sister, a wife, a woman colleague or friend you respect, or a mother (hint: that last one is all of you!), then you have something to say to the Assailant-in-Chief. Your letter might be a brief one-liner. That's great! Please send it! Women need our allies now. Here's the link to DJT's contact page--this might take you one minute or less! https://www.donaldjtrump.com/contact
Or, maybe you will start a related project addressing any one of the many groups Trump has already harmed . . .
As we talk with each other, let's break the bubble and also send our complaints straight to the source. He won't read them and won't care if he does, so probably this is a placeholder action while we figure out what we're really going to do . . . but it's something.

Dorine's posts can be found here:  https://www.facebook.com/dorine.jennette

PS from Sara:  I've taken to just tweeting these at him.  He's not going to read them anyway, but I might as well use the platform that he actually responds to.  *snort*

Friday, December 9, 2016

Article I of the Constitution, Letter #21


12/9/16

Dear Assailant-in-Chief,

I am going to continue my comments about the Constitution, because I've noticed a lot of right wing people like to talk about the Constitution a great deal, even though none of them seem to have read any of it except for the Second Amendment, and only the last bit of that.  Your apparent ignorance of the Constitution goes well beyond the norm, of course; it is a matter of speculation and astonishment. So while I am no Constitutional scholar, except in the sense that every American thinks they are, neither are you.  There is a Constitutional scholar handy, though; it's the guy sitting in the Oval Office right now.  Perhaps you should ask him about it.

Article I of the Constitution describes the makeup of Congress, how representatives and senators are to be chosen, and the powers of said Congress.  It contains the historical quirk of the "three-fifths compromise," which was the agreement that got hammered out between the slave-owning states who wanted slaves to be full citizens when counting up population for the purposes of representation but in no way otherwise, and the free states who said "nuh uh."  I note in passing two things:  the argument that you could have a citizen without a citizen's rights would have held even less water than it did if women hadn't been barred from most citizenship rights as a matter of course, and also that historically, attempts to disenfranchise or deny the franchise altogether to citizens do not end well.  They may gain ground temporarily but end in ignominy and infamy.

Congress may, among other things, grant letters of marque and reprisal and "define and punish...felonies committed on the high seas."   That is to say, they get to decide who is a pirate and who is just working freelance for the government by boarding other people's ships and taking their stuff.  That part should appeal to you but it's their job, not yours.  Sorry.

Speaking of things that are their job and not yours, laws.  They get to make laws, pass laws, levy taxes (including lowering and raising them).  They also set a budget.  So many of the things you have asserted you will do as President aren't actually things the President does, except by way of suggestion.  I thought you should know. Of course, we live in a country where people think the President could take their guns away, and they keep falling for that stupid line every four years more or less, so you're not the only one who needs to realize that.

Here's the part that has been in the news a lot lately:  "No title of nobility shall be granted by the United States: and no person holding any office of profit or trust under them, shall, without the consent of the Congress, accept of any present, emolument, office, or title, of any kind whatever, from any king, prince, or foreign state."

That means you can't accept goodies from foreign powers.  Including favorable treatment on business deals. The way things are going right now, you will be in violation of the Constitution as of 12:01 pm on January 20, 2017. I don't expect you to stop, honestly, until somebody makes you.  Whether or not Congress will do so probably depends on how much you annoy them and/or how much they think their own fortunes will be affected by action versus inaction.  They probably won't do the right thing until somebody makes them, either.

That is where We the People come in.  As always.

Yours sincerely,

Sara Amis
Citizen of these United States of America


From Dorine Jennette:

PLEASE JOIN ME IN WRITING THE ASSAILANT-IN-CHIEF
Please join me in bombarding the Assailant-in-Chief with letters: https://www.donaldjtrump.com/contact. I will write to him every day through his first 100 days in office, maybe longer if momentum holds. I am asking others to write just ONE letter. Let's not just vent our grief to each other--let's speak truth to power together. Please WRITE and please SHARE this plan with your friends. Pass it on!
You do not need to be a woman or an assault survivor to address the Assailant-in-Chief as such. If you are a man who has a daughter, a sister, a wife, a woman colleague or friend you respect, or a mother (hint: that last one is all of you!), then you have something to say to the Assailant-in-Chief. Your letter might be a brief one-liner. That's great! Please send it! Women need our allies now. Here's the link to DJT's contact page--this might take you one minute or less! https://www.donaldjtrump.com/contact
Or, maybe you will start a related project addressing any one of the many groups Trump has already harmed . . .
As we talk with each other, let's break the bubble and also send our complaints straight to the source. He won't read them and won't care if he does, so probably this is a placeholder action while we figure out what we're really going to do . . . but it's something.

Dorine's posts can be found here:  https://www.facebook.com/dorine.jennette

PS from Sara:  I've taken to just tweeting these at him.  He's not going to read them anyway, but I might as well use the platform that he actually responds to.  *snort*

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Schoolhouse Rock, Letter #20


12/8/16

Dear Assailant-in-Chief,

You are much older than me, but back in the 1970s when you were busy trying to be a "playboy," there used to be a series of short educational cartoons in between regular programming on Saturday mornings.  They are still available via the Internet, of course.  You should really check them out, especially since your knowledge in some areas appears to be spotty and you reportedly  don't like to read.  You might find them illuminating.  For example:




It's the Preamble to the Constitution, in catchy singable form, friend to high school history students everywhere in America.  I'd like to point out a few things.

"WE THE PEOPLE" is how it starts out.  That is, the entire business rests on the principle that government derives legitimacy from the consent of the governed (cf the Declaration of Independence), both explicitly as spelled out in the Constitution itself and implicitly.  That is a matter you should consider both when contemplating the very wide margin by which you lost the popular vote and the way you are breaking promises to your own voters at a rapid clip.  The consent of the governed here surely lies in what people actually voted for.

"...in order to form a more perfect Union..."   That's to your address, right now.  A lot of people shed a lot of blood to hold that Union together, one way and another.  The eyes of our ancestors are on you, and if you continue to rip us apart for your own short-term advantage, they...and our descendants...will judge you for it.

I hear the White House is haunted.  No wonder you don't want to sleep there.



"...establish Justice, ensure domestic Tranquility..."  Those go together.  No justice, no peace.  That last is a chant, coming soon to a street demonstration near you.  Don't think that attempting to block permits is going to stop anybody.  It may force us to be more diffuse...which, you will discover, is not actually to your advantage.  Would you rather have one big demonstration in Washington and smaller demonstrations elsewhere, or much bigger demonstrations all over the country, plus looking like you're afraid?  You're about to find out. 

"...provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare..."   Those too go together, and I believe by intention.  Defense, not aggression, is the purpose of our military as imagined by our founders; I do not think that they would be in favor of our current globe-spanning empire and its attendant costs in both money and moral standing.  At any rate, we currently focus far more on the "defense" part of that while giving the "general Welfare" part short shrift, and I think that is exactly the opposite of right. 

"...and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity..."  Liberty is the point of all this.  Not just for some of us, but for all of us...past, present, and future.  That's what Posterity means; those who will follow after.  We, the people from whom the authority of government derives, get to march around, say what we want, worship as we please, and generally conduct our business as we see fit so long as it isn't infringing on anybody else.  What you like or don't like doesn't enter into it. 

What's good for our posterity does, however.  I'll tell you one thing that isn't good for them:  sea level rise.  Famine. Drought.  Wildfires.  Increasing storms.  Any curtailment of their Liberty, including your craven threats against the press and the First Amendment.  (I'll get to that in more detail in a later letter.)

"...do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America."  "Ordain" is an interesting word.  It means to decree something or put it in proper order, but it also means to imbue with holy authority, as in ordaining a minister.

Barring an outbreak of daring patriotism and common sense among the Electors, on January 20th you will hold up your hand and vow to defend the Constitution.  I hope that the words you speak have some power to make an impression on you. But in the end, the Constitution is bigger than you, and it is up to us, the People, to hold you accountable.  That we shall do.

Yours sincerely,

Sara Amis
Citizen of these United States of America


From Dorine Jennette:

PLEASE JOIN ME IN WRITING THE ASSAILANT-IN-CHIEF
Please join me in bombarding the Assailant-in-Chief with letters: https://www.donaldjtrump.com/contact. I will write to him every day through his first 100 days in office, maybe longer if momentum holds. I am asking others to write just ONE letter. Let's not just vent our grief to each other--let's speak truth to power together. Please WRITE and please SHARE this plan with your friends. Pass it on!
You do not need to be a woman or an assault survivor to address the Assailant-in-Chief as such. If you are a man who has a daughter, a sister, a wife, a woman colleague or friend you respect, or a mother (hint: that last one is all of you!), then you have something to say to the Assailant-in-Chief. Your letter might be a brief one-liner. That's great! Please send it! Women need our allies now. Here's the link to DJT's contact page--this might take you one minute or less! https://www.donaldjtrump.com/contact
Or, maybe you will start a related project addressing any one of the many groups Trump has already harmed . . .
As we talk with each other, let's break the bubble and also send our complaints straight to the source. He won't read them and won't care if he does, so probably this is a placeholder action while we figure out what we're really going to do . . . but it's something.

Dorine's posts can be found here:  https://www.facebook.com/dorine.jennette

PS from Sara:  I've taken to just tweeting these at him.  He's not going to read them anyway, but I might as well use the platform that he actually responds to.  *snort*