Angels in America

Blessed are the protesters. And the attorneys. And the mayors and governors…

Remember when the right-wing malcontents went after Michelle Obama in 2008 when she declared, “[F]or the first time in my adult lifetime, I am really proud of my country”? Well, for the first time since January 20, 2017, Americans of conscience and compassion can be really proud of this country, thanks to the millions who have stood up in firm opposition to Mr. Trump’s agenda.

We’re bigger and better than Trump. His actions are borne of a small mind and a smaller heart; he is a 70-year-old child, throwing tantrums to attract the world’s attention. Those who have stood up–in churches, synagogues and mosques, in city halls and state houses, on busy streets and in corporate suites–are the real leaders of this country, men and women with far more integrity and intelligence than the current resident of the White House.

Ohio Governor John Kasich, the supposed last voice of centrism in the GOP, once wrote a book entitled Courage is Contagious. It’s ironic that the Republican governor’s words will apply to elected House and Senate Democrats; it is the courage of the activists that will spread to the opposition party on Capitol Hill, giving those men and women in the fortitude to say “Hell No!” to the bigoted billionaire.

More and more Americans now recognize the profound immorality of this man. They know he is unfit for command, that he will bring this country to its knees if his agenda is not halted with political force. They know that his judges–including Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch–will contaminate our courts. They know that he will bring injustice to the Justice Department. They know his wars–and they will surely come–will wound, maim and kill innocents.

History will honor these resistors–the men and women who comfort their Muslim neighbors, who align with the ACLU, who reach their Representatives and signal their Senators to let them know that they want change that disempowers the deranged. They will be lionized the way we lionize the abolitionists, the women’s suffrage movement, the Greatest Generation. There is no greater honor than standing up to extremism in your time.

Two years ago, I praised Wen Stephenson’s bookWhat We’re Fighting for Now Is Each Other, a compelling chronicle of the nascent climate movement in the United States. The title of Stephenson’s book could also describe the forces of resistance to Mr. Trump’s agenda. The fight against Trump is a fight for us–for our democracy, for our freedom, for our planet, for our dignity, for our humanity.

The spirit of America can be found in the resistors. They are the embodiment of patriotism, not the current of the White House. The creed of these resistors is a simple and familiar one:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

These resistors will bring an end to this era of extremism. They will win. It’s only a matter of time.

D.R. Tucker

D. R. Tucker is a Massachusetts-based journalist who has served as the weekend contributor for the Washington Monthly since May 2014. He has also written for the Huffington Post, the Washington Spectator, the Metrowest Daily News, investigative journalist Brad Friedman's Brad Blog and environmental journalist Peter Sinclair's Climate Crocks.