Category Archives: Resist!

Indivisible’s two year plan to beat Trump and save democracy

[Editor: Indivisible continues to do a great job – creatively and persistently resisting the Trump administration and building toward a more progressive future.  Find your local Indivisible group here.  My local group is Vallejo-Benicia Indivisible (on Facebook).  Contribute to Indivisible here.  Download the Indivisible 2.0 Guide.  More Benicia Independent coverage of Indivisible.  – R.S.]

How we will beat Trump and save Democracy…

Indivisible’s 2-year plan to beat Trump and save Democracy – 6/6/2019

Close your eyes for a minute and imagine this: it’s 2021. Trump lost and an inspiring progressive takes office. Democrats held the House and retook the Senate.

On day one, the new Congress passes sweeping democracy reforms to roll back decades of Republican attacks on our democracy. We smash voter suppression and expand voter access, end gerrymandering, take on money in politics, admit new states, and take back the courts. In short, we unrig the rules and put democracy back in the hands of the people. Then we turn to a major progressive legislative agenda – immigration reform, climate change, health care, and more.

We can have the inclusive democracy and progressive change we’ve dreamed of. We’re so close. How do we get there?

Indivisible may have gotten started to resist Trump, but we know that the problem we’re facing is bigger than Trump. Everywhere we look, Republicans are trying to rig the rules to stay in power – and to lock the American people out. They know in a real representative democracy they’ll lose – so they’re breaking democracy.

That’s why we have to beat Trump, but we can’t stop there. We have to save our democracy. We can do both, but we have to start now.

How do we beat Trump?

  1. Play defense and weaken Trump. Defend against Trump’s attacks, particularly those targeting immigrants – defunding hate in the upcoming budget in September is the biggest fight against Trump’s agenda of the year (more information here), and anti-immigrant attacks will be a key part of his strategy for 2020. We’ll also push back on Trump’s crimes – and ask Democrats in Congress to begin impeachment investigations.
  2. A constructive primary. We have so many exciting and energizing candidates in the Democratic primary! Together we can ensure the primary candidates offer the strongest possible alternative vision to Trumpism, and that the ultimate nominee is a strong, well-vetted, progressive candidate. Indivisibles (and presidential candidates) across the country have already set the tone by signing the Indivisible Pledge commiting to a constructive primary and to support the ultimate nominee.
  3. Take back the White House (and the Senate!) After the primary, we all need to come together to knock doors, make calls and register voters–if we do the work, together, we can beat Trump.

How do we save democracy?

  1. Set the stage for democracy reform. The anti-Trump resistance must grow into a pro-democracy movement to build support for a game-changing reforms after Trump is gone. We need to get Democrats on the record to support bold reforms now, in 2019, so that they’re ready to move that agenda in 2021. We’ll start by focusing on eliminating the filibuster (see why here!).
  2. Pass our democracy agenda on day one. If we win the White House, Senate and House, we finally have full agenda setting power. The new Democratic congress must eliminate the filibuster in order to get anything done. Then it should immediately pass other democracy reforms, including admitting new states, expanding voting rights, ending gerrymandering, and more.
  3. Make long-term change. With a real representative democracy, we can finally enact other critical progressive legislation, from immigration reform to climate change to health care.

For more information on getting involved with this plan, you can reach out to your Indivisible Organizer here.

Mayors of Vallejo and Benicia join 150 to say no to hate groups

Vigil announcement

A Unity Vigil drew 150 citizens from Vallejo and Benicia on Sunday evening, August 13.  The crowd expressed solidarity and heartfelt outrage following the violent white supremacist, anti-Semitic and anti-gay rally in Charlottesville, VA last week.

Of particular note was the presence of the Mayors of both cities.  Mayor Elizabeth Patterson represented Benicia, and Mayor Bob Sampayan represented Vallejo.

The Benicia Independent stands firm in opposition to the moral depravity of white nationalism, the KKK and neo Nazi ideologies.

• From the Benicia Herald (appearing in the print edition only):

Benicia Mayor Elizabeth Patterson addresses the crowd at an informal vigil Sunday evening in Vallejo’s Unity Plaza. The event was put on in response to a violent white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Va. over the weekend that resulted in – among other things – a car being intentionally driven into a crowd of protesters, injuring 19 people and killing 32-year-old legal assistant Heather Heyer. The event was organized by Vallejo Benicia Indivisible and Benicia Indivisible for Justice and also featured speeches by Vallejo Mayor Bob Sampayan and Vallejo Poet Laureate Genea Brice. A moment of silence for Heyer was held at 7 p.m. | Photo courtesy of Vallejo Benicia Indivisible

• From the Vallejo Times-Herald:

Vigil Held in Support of Charlottesville – Vallejoans fill Unity Plaza to stand against bigotry, hate

Vallejo Mayor Bob Sampayan addresses a group of residents during a unity vigil Sunday evening in Vallejo.
Vallejo Mayor Bob Sampayan addresses a group of residents during a unity vigil Sunday evening in Vallejo. | John Glidden — Times-Herald
By John Glidden, 08/13/17, 10:28 PM PDT 

With the classic “We Shall Overcome” as their rallying cry, Vallejoans took to Unity Plaza Sunday night to take on the hate they had seen on their TV screens over the weekend.

About 150 residents sang the legendary civil rights anthem, denouncing the bigotry ­— and violence ­— that led to tragedy Saturday in Charlottesville, Va.

The gathering was in response to the death of Heather Heyer, who was intentionally hit by a car Saturday while she protested a white supremacist rally.

“Was I mad? Hell yes. Did I put blame? Hell yes. Did I point my finger at certain people in our (presidential) administration? Yes, I did,” Vallejo Mayor Bob Sampayan said, attempting to stifle his tears. “But do I hate? No. Because that, my friends, is what caused Heather’s demise. Hatred.”

Sampayan lauded the ethnic diversity of Sunday’s vigil participants.

“That’s what really makes me proud,” he added.

Benicia Mayor Elizabeth Patterson also spoke, proudly proclaiming that “Benicia and Vallejo stand together.”

Patterson said she has no idea how to stop the type of hate shown in Charlottesville during Saturday’s white nationalist rally which caused bloody clashes with counter protesters.

“I am looking for your help and your ideas because even though it happened across the country, we have to be prepared for what could happen here,” Patterson added. “I’m worried.”

Vallejo activist and Neighborhood Rising founder Hakeem Brown expressed determination that the events in Charlottesville would not come to Vallejo.

“It’s our responsibility to make sure hate doesn’t take root in Vallejo,” he said to applause. Brown said a divided America allowed for the election of President Donald Trump.

“Our division aided his rise,” Brown said.

He urged residents to stand together and vote to overcome the hate he says Trump and his supporters are spreading.

Several in attendance carried signs, calling for unity and/or for love. Those who addressed the audience stood in front of a large American flag.

At exactly 7 p.m., a moment of silence for 32 seconds temporarily stopped the speeches, as those assembled remembered the 32-year-old Heyer.

Genea Brice, the city’s inaugural poet laureate, was incredulous as she spoke about Heyer’s death.

“Somebody died because they were standing for what they believed in,” Brice said. “Somebody used a car as a weapon.”

Brice then read a poem she wrote about unity.

She said the events in Virginia will not happen “because we are standing together.”