We at Peaceworks, like progressives around the country, are still in the process of exploring how we can most effectively oppose and stop those aspects Donald Trump’s program that fly in the face of our efforts to create a more peaceful, just, prosperous and sustainable future. We are particularly concerned about his stated intentions to accelerate investment in fossil fuel infrastructure while abandoning efforts to address the Climate Crisis, engage in a major military buildup, appoint reactionary justices and judges to our courts, and take actions that threaten communities under siege, including Muslims, undocumented persons and their families, people of color, LGBT people and women.
We also are deeply disturbed by those he has appointed to top level positions in his administration. While many positions are yet to be filled, to date he has appointed a cast of far right ideologues, bankers, billionaires and privatizers. This does not bode well for healthcare, including Medicare and Medicaid and those helped by the Affordable Care Act, Social Security and public education.
In order to effectively respond to the crisis Trump’s presidency presents, Peaceworks has begun a process of reaching out to approximately three dozen other progressive groups to see how we can collaborate and coordinate our responses. We held an initial meeting this week and will be continuing this process in the weeks ahead. Some things we can share at the moment include:
• We will be supporting efforts to turn people out in Washington, DC for the Women’s March being held on Saturday, Jan. 21. Info on the national march can be found HERE. Missouri page for the March is HERE. Those in the mid-Missouri area who are interested in attending can also contact us here at Peaceworks, by e-mailing us CLICK HERE or calling us at 573-875-0539 and sharing your contact info (phone & e-mail) so we can let you know about bus and other arrangements.
• We will also be working with our local allies to put on events here on January 20-21 that those who aren’t going to DC can participate in to demonstrate our concerns and, as Donald Trump is being inaugurated, help inaugurate a new era of progressive activism here at the grassroots. Stay tuned to these e-mails and our Facebook page for details as we move this forward. And please let us know if you’d like to help with the organizing.
• Contact your elected officials to let them know of your concerns. You can find contact info for your congressperson and senators HERE. There are many, many concerns that would be good to share with these officials, but perhaps the most timely is to urge our senators to reject Trump’s egregious cabinet appointments, all of whom must be confirmed by the Senate. It is worthy of note that the Democrats cannot, by themselves, vote down Trump’s appointees, but they could filibuster which could lead to at least some of them being rejected. It would be good to request this of both our senators, but especially to emphasize this with Sen. Claire McCaskill. You can find a list of Trump’s appointments announced to date HERE.
• Join in visible demonstrations opposing the Trump agenda. For the past 15 years we have maintained a weekly presence every Wednesday, 4:30-5:30 p.m. for a Rush Hour Peace Demonstration at Broadway and Providence. It is our hope and intention in the months ahead to expand this presence in both numbers of participants and issues addressed. We invite you to join us any Wednesday, for any portion of the time we are out there. We also need help making new banners and would really welcome help in this department as well. Please e-mail us HERE or contact Mark at 573-875-0539 if you’d like to help with banner making.
• Help us redouble our educational efforts. Ultimately, our ability to move our country in a progressive direction depends upon more of our fellow citizens embracing our shared vision of a peaceful, just and sustainable future, one of cooperation, caring and sharing. This includes many component pieces, but our efforts in the months ahead will be addressed largely to informing our neighbors throughout the mid-Missouri region as to the urgency of dealing with the Climate Crisis and as to the availability of solutions if we can muster the political will to enact them. If you would like to help with this process, your participation would be most welcome. We also are looking for opportunities to address the climate issue before organized groups including houses of worship, civic and fraternal organizations, classes, professional organizations, unions and more. If you belong to any such group and would like to have a presentation, please contact us and we will be happy to arrange a presentation.
• This process of mobilization is just beginning. We will be keeping you updated as to other ways to participate in the weeks and months ahead. We do wish to emphasize that, as dismal as the prospects of a Trump presidency appear, this is no time for resignation. Rather, it is a time for unity, mutual support and empowerment. You are needed in this process. This is not a time to take a vacation from activism. Rather, it’s a time to redouble our efforts and for those who’ve been sitting on the sidelines to recognize the urgency of engagement.