Earlier this week, a group of former congressional staffers released an excellent guide for resisting the agenda of Donald Trump by targeting Congress. If you’re moaning to yourself, “oh no, not another strategy guide,” hold on and read this one. Like you, I’m sick to death of political strategy memos that boil down to scolding the reader for not adopting the author’s policy priorities. If I never read another one of those “messaging” sermons in my life, I’ll have one reason to die happy.
This guide is different. It doesn’t tell you what to believe or insist that you need to hide your ideals; indeed, it respects your honesty and assumes that you know what matters and why. Instead, it shares very practical inside tips on how to forcefully interact with members of Congress to maneuver them into a clear choice:
they must share your agenda of resistance or suffer the inevitable consequences.
- How to start an effective local resistance group with as few as 10 people;
- How to delegate tasks and maintain coordination in an activist group;
- How to find and confront your members of Congress in person;
- How to hold the floor during an in-person meeting;
- How to navigate conversationally past a staffer who doesn’t want to respond;
- How to hold members of Congress to account for Trumpist actions without triggering the charge of incivility or impoliteness;
The advice offered in this document is super and absolutely necessary. But it is not sufficient (no single document ever is). Americans against Trump need to add at their own work in at least two areas:
1) A list of state and local anti-Trump organizations for dedicated individuals who are looking to join the movement. We have started a list here, focused for the moment on Inauguration Day protest activity. If you know of a state or local anti-Trump group that should be added to the list, share a link at the bottom of the list page.
2) Additional chapters having to do with activist work outside of the Congress. The congressional staffers who have written this excellent guide have explicitly asked citizens not only to share the guide, but to “amend it, make it your own.” In that spirit, additional brief how-to chapters should be written by someone (is this you?) on:
- Writing an editorial or letter to the editor for the local newspaper
- Interacting with talk radio shows to shift populist discussion
- Generating original news through citizen research
- How to infiltrate, take over or block and hold accountable local party organizations
- Running for office
- … what else? What do you know that you can share? What do you not know that someone else could tell you? Suggest a new chapter for the guide in the comments section below, and we’ll add it to the list. If somebody should write another chapter, who? Is that somebody you?