Tie vs Trump: A broad coalition is preparing the fightback in the US


Numerous progressive movements are organising to resist Trump from his first day in office

US PRESIDENT-ELECT Donald Trump will have to struggle against a growing movement of opposition to his hard-right policies, including some inspired by progressive Scottish movements.

Andrew Moody who visited Scotland last year and was inspired by the campaign for LGBT+ inclusive education in Scotland’s schools, was one of hundreds of thousands of young people to protest against the election of the white-nationalist billionaire, who ran his campaign on xenophobic and intolerant rhetoric aimed at women, muslims and Mexicans among other groups.

Mike Pence, Trump’s running mate and soon to be vice President, has said that marriage equality for the LGBT+ community in the US could lead to “societal collapse”.

Moody wore the emblem of the Time for Inclusive Education (Tie) campaign when he joined a demonstration against Trump’s election at the state house in Indianapolis. Tie demands that students at school age be educated about the range of sexualities and sexual and gender identities at school, in response to the bullying, abuse and isolation of LGBT+ young people.

Speaking to CommonSpace, he said he thought Tie demands were “sorely needed” in the US, where in many states the LGBT+ community faces overt discrimination.

“Despite the results of the election, the majority of Americans do not support Donald Trump’s rhetoric of intolerance and regressive policy objectives.” Andrew Moody, US Tie supporter

He said: “I chose to protest today to stand in solidarity with at-risk communities and to show support for measures that seek to protect the LGBT+ community from discrimination at the federal level. I protested to show that despite the results of the election, the majority of Americans do not support Donald Trump’s rhetoric of intolerance and regressive policy objectives.

“I support the Tie campaign because their goal of educating on LGBT+ specific issues is a particularly salient objective in the otherwise divisive politics of the day; something that is sorely needed in the United States. There are many gaps in education, federal funding, and understanding among voters, and there’s evidence that indicates a lack of understanding on the part of many as to the plight of the LGBT+ community in America.”

One of many mass protests to take place in the US in recent days, this one in Chicago

Responding to the show of international solidarity, a Tie Spokesperson said: “We met Andrew last summer in Edinburgh, when we gave a talk to him and his fellow students from Purdue University. He is someone with whom we share many principles, and we struck up an instant bond. Since that initial meeting Andrew has consistently stood in solidarity with Tie and now in a time of complete uncertainty for all minority groups across America we stand in solidarity with him and all of those who fear that their rights may be rolled back and safety may be jeopardised following the election of a Donald Trump.”

Since his shock election victory last week (Tuesday 8 November) there has been a spike in attacks on groups targeted by Trump and his supporters, including on the LGBT+ community.

But ordinary people are already preparing the fightback against Trump.

The fightback

What’s already happened?

As many as a million people have protested in the six days since the election. Practically every major city has seen protests, but hotspots include New York, Chicago, Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Oakland. These protests have seen a convergence of exiting and well organised protest movements such as Black Lives Matter and groups of people who have never protested before. A mass walk-out by school students in San Francisco led to a march on the local seat of government.

Police have responded to protests in some cases with rubber bullets and CS spray.

What’s being planned?

There are at least two huge mass mobilisations against Trump being planned. On Thursday 10 November, in the swell of protests across the US, Seattle socialist councillor Kshama Sawant announced plans to hold a mass demonstration to “shut down” Trump’s inauguration on 20 January.

The day after the planned inauguration, a mass march of women on Washington will take place. Tens of thousands of women have already said they will attend what could be a historic demonstration on the day. Trump made numerous misogynist comments during the campaign.

Pictures: Andrew Moody, Pete Ramand

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