Month three of the Trumpocalypse

Donald Trump inauguration

Welcome to my third roundup of Trump news and commentary. The Trumpocalypse has officially begun. Donald Trump is an American business, television personality, and 45th President of the United States.

The inauguration of Donald Trump as 45th President was held on Friday, January 20, 2017. We’ll get to that, but first let’s look at some significant events leading up to the inauguration.

#GoldenGate

#GoldenGate dominated the news in early January. There are two parts to this story. The first is that CNN reported that four senior intelligence officials briefed both Trump and then-President Barack Obama on Russian interference in the election. The report also contained a two-page synopsis of a 35-page compilation of memos that made serious allegations about Trump’s connections to Russia and about his behaviour while visiting that country. The source of these documents, a former agent for the British security agency MI6, was believed to be credible.

The second part of this story came from BuzzFeed, which published the memos that formed the basis for the briefing. BuzzFeed’s decision polarised the media industry. Some media executives and journalists said it was irresponsible to publish unverified allegations. Others defended BuzzFeed arguing that journalists publish unverified allegations all the time if they believe the source is credible and it’s in the public interest, and if the allegations were serious enough to be the basis of an intelligence briefing for Trump and Obama, then they were credible enough to be published.

If you’re wondering why this segment is called #GoldenGate, it’s because the unverified dossier claimed that Trump hired Russian prostitutes to urinate on a bed previously used by President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama in the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Moscow. The salacious details were perfect for memes, various related hashtags, and late-night monologues. It made the sex-positive community speak up for the pissplayers while largely ignoring that this act doesn’t show Trump is kinky. It just shows he’s an asshole. Allegedly.

Trump’s first press conference

In early January, Trump held his first press conference since July 2016. His delusional supporters thought he slayed it. The rest of us not living in Bizarre World, saw it for the combative and bizarre trainwreck it was. You can see it and read the entire transcript here.

One of the highlights was the props. Trump stood next to stacks of manila folders that the press was not allowed to look at. These were “some of the many documents,” Trump explained, “that I’ve signed turning over complete and total control [of the Trump Organization] to my sons.” Lawyer Sheri Dillon looked and sounded lawyerly as she tried to hypnotize viewers into believing there’s something legitimate going on here.

Trump January press conference.

Papers! Important papers! Image: Don Emmert/AFP/Getty Images.

To be fair, Trump was right when he said he could run his business and government at the same time. He has no legal obligation to detach himself from his businesses and financial interests. However, it is possible that he is constrained by a clause in the Constitution about income from foreign governments. As president, he will have to comply with financial disclosure requirements, but the disclosures are not as detailed as federal tax returns.

Unlike all presidential nominees since 1980, Trump has not released his tax returns. He was asked about this and replied sarcastically, claiming that Americans don’t care about his tax reports despite all the polls, including one from Fox News, that show otherwise.

Another highlight was Trump’s lashing out at the media. He stated that he doesn’t give press conferences because the media reports on him inaccurately. He rejected the allegations in dossier, calling BuzzFeed “a failing pile of garbage” and went on to attack CNN, refusing to a take a question from CNN senior White House correspondent Jim Acosta, and calling CNN “terrible” and “fake news”.

Following the press conference, Esquire reported that the Trump administration was considering a plan to evict reporters from the White House. Journalists have been granted space in the White House since the William McKinley administration (1897-1901). Since the 1970s, reporters have worked in the West Wing. The White House press room is on the first floor between the presidential residence and the West Wing. It gives reporters convenient access and their presence has been viewed as a symbol of a president’s willingness to be held accountable.

In response to the alarming report, Kyle Pope, Editor in Chief and Publisher of the Columbia Journalism Review, penned an open letter to Trump on behalf of the U.S. Press Corps. Pope outlined what Trump can expect over the next four years and closed by reminding him that presidents come and go:

“Best-case scenario, you’re going to be in this job for eight years. We’ve been around since the founding of the republic, and our role in this great democracy has been ratified and reinforced again and again and again.”

Reince Priebus was asked about this on NBC’s Meet the Press and ABC’s This Week, but was not entirely clear on whether the plan is to move reporters to a larger space and whether that might extend to evicting them from the White House.

NPR also had something to say about legal and personal attacks on journalists.

“These issues should matter to all citizens regardless of their political perspective. We at NPR have strong points of view when it comes to freedom of the press and we will make those views transparent to you in pieces such as this. We also see it as our responsibility as the public’s media to provide a platform for discussion of these issues and the airing of differing views. There are valid discussions to have. That is the kind of debate the framers envisioned.”

The White House has continued giving CNN the cold shoulder.

What was the GOP doing?

These news don’t have the attention-grabbing power of Trump’s Twitterstorms and pink pussyhats. Sometimes the subject matter is also obscure. This helps shield these GOP efforts from public scrutiny. It’s not sexy, but federal legislation is really important. It’s how significant change happens.

They tried to gut an independent ethics committee

Without warning, House Republicans voted in a private meeting in early January to strip the powers of the Office of Congressional Ethics (OCE). The OCE was established by House Democrats in 2008 following the Jack Abramoff corruption scandal as a nonpartisan, independent entity charged with reviewing allegations of misconduct in the House of Representatives.

This move was immediately met with criticism by Democrats and Republicans, their constituents, watchdog organisations, including Judicial Watch, the conservative group that has led efforts to release former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s emails, and even Trump who tweeted that Congress had more important issues to take up, like tax reform and health care. Less than 24 hours later, House Republicans reversed the measure.

They’re fining Congress members who try to show what’s going on

House Republicans managed to approve new fines for photographing, audio or video recording, or livestreaming. House Democrats livestreamed and snapped photos of a daylong gun-control sit-in protest in June 2016. Under the new rules, lawmakers can be fined up to $2,500 for using their phones to take pictures or shoot videos on the House floor. Rep. John Larson (D-Conn.), called it “unprecedented and unconstitutional.” Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.) told Politico, “I’m not afraid. I’ve been fined before. Many of us have been fined before. We cannot and will not be silenced.”

They’re working towards firing federal workers they don’t like

Republican majority in the House of Representatives revived the Holman Rule, which allows Congress to cut any individual federal worker’s salary down to $1. In 1943 the Holman rule was used to justify the proposed elimination of the salaries of thousands of federal employees targeted for being too leftist. It’s not far-fetched to imagine the Trump government using it to get rid of federal employees whose work is not aligned with the administration, such as Energy Department scientists who worked on climate change.

They’re working to undermine government regulations

The GOP has also been quietly working on a campaign against regulation. This comes chiefly in the form of two bills. One is the “Regulations from the Executive in Need of Scrutiny Act of 2017,” or REINS Act, which passed the House in early January. If enacted, it would prevent an agency from issuing a new regulation.

The other is the “Regulatory Accountability Act of 2017,” or RAA, which passed the House on January 11. It would create so many more preliminary procedural requirements to make the existing, already cumbersome process endless.

Why is this important? Because government regulations do things like:

  • give civil rights protections and guarantees equal opportunity for people with disabilities
  • set limits on certain air pollutants
  • provide for the protection and conservation of threatened and endangered plants and animals as well as their habitats
  • look after the safety of food

Our safety and well-being depends on regulations and a regulatory process.

They’re working on repealing Obamacare

Meanwhile, during a midnight congressional session, the Senate voted to approve a “budget blueprint” which would allow Republicans to repeal parts of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) without the threat of a Democratic filibuster. Democrats protested by dedicating their votes to the people who they say would be harmed by repealing Obamacare. In a tweet, Trump congratulated the Senate for taking the first step to repealing Obamacare.

Senate Democrats asked the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) for an estimate of what would happen if the ACA were repealed. Here’s the CBO answer:

  • The number of people who are uninsured would increase by 18 million in the first year. That number would increase to 32 million by 2026.
  • Premiums would increase by 20-25 percent in the first year. The increase would reach about 50 percent in the following year and double by 2026.

Republican lawmakers have not yet presented a replacement. House Republicans, however, prohibited the CBO from tracking and reporting on the costs associated with repealing the ACA.

Speaking of Obamacare, we learned that a lot of Americans don’t know that it’s the same thing as the Affordable Care Act, not to mention all the other names it’s known by in different states. Jimmy Kimmel and various polls have shown that, among those who don’t know they’re the same thing, how people feel about Obamacare depends on how they feel about Obama.

They’re trying to criminalise protesting

Republican lawmakers in ten states have been working on legislation to criminalise protesting: Minnesota, Washington state, Michigan, Iowa, North Dakota, Indiana, Virginia, Colorado, Missouri, and North Carolina. The bill failed in Virginia in a bipartisan vote.

They’re going after women and transgender people

Kentucky became the 19th state to enact a 20-week abortion ban based on the idea that 20 weeks is when a fetus can feel pain and thus it can feel the abortion. As usual with Republicans, this contradicts the science relied upon by doctors, which is that the ability to feel pain doesn’t develop until closer to 30 weeks. Republicans are also trying to defund Planned Parenthood.

The bathroom wars of 2016 are not over. Lawmakers in at least 11 states have filed legislation to close off certain bathrooms to transgender people. The Wyoming bill would make it a crime of public indecency to use a bathroom or changing facility designated for the opposite sex.  The ACLU has launched a website tracking state bills that affect LGBT rights.

They’re resisting Trump

Republican Sens. John McCain of Arizona and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina are arguably Trump’s biggest GOP critics, but they’re not the only ones. Sen. Rob Portman of Ohio, Sen. Ben Sasse of Nebraska, and Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah criticised Trump’s immigration ban. Senators Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska said on the floor of the Senate that they would vote against Trump’s nominee to head the Education Department.

The inauguration

Polls show that Trump is the least popular incoming president in at least 40 years. That was evident at the inauguration and in the days following.

Trump struggled to find artists willing to perform at the inauguration concert. In 1989, George H.W. Bush had Barbra Streisand. In 1993, Clinton had Bob Dylan. In 2001, President George W. Bush’s Inauguration Concert included Ricky Martin, Jessica Simpson, and 98 Degrees. President Obama had Aretha Franklin, Kelly Clarkson, and Beyonce. The list of artists that declined to perform at Trump’s inauguration includes Elton John, Andrea Bocelli, Charlotte Church, Garth Brooks, Celine Dion, Moby, The Beach Boys, KISS, Paul Anka, and R. Kelly. In the end, Trump got some country acts nobody’s heard of and one hit wonder 3 Doors Down. And the Rockettes even though they didn’t want to. Even the port-a-potties company was embarrassed to be there.

Obama drew an estimated 1.8 million people to the National Mall eight years ago, according to federal and local agencies. They estimated turnout for Trump would be between 700,000 and 900,000. An estimated 160,000 people attended the public ceremony on the West Front of the United States Capitol Building in Washington, D.C.

In a press conference the following day, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer falsely stated that the crowd “was the largest audience ever to witness an inauguration, period, both in person and around the globe”, and accused the media of reporting false crowd estimates to “lessen the enthusiasm of the inauguration”. Numerous sources such as Vanity Fair, the Huffington Post, the New York Times, and the Washing Post highlighted the fact that Spicer’s claims were incorrect. In response, Donald Trump’s counsellor and spokesperson, Kellyanne Conway, appeared on Meet the Press and told Chuck Todd, that Spicer gave “alternative facts”. Todd responded by saying “alternative facts are not facts. They’re falsehoods.” Someone bought alternativefacts.com and is redirecting it to a Psychology Today page on gaslighting.

Like cult members who never lose faith in their charismatic leader, many Trump supporters continue to believe that he had the biggest inauguration crowd ever.

The Women’s Marches

The day following the inauguration, we saw the largest series of protests against Trump and the largest single-day demonstrations in U.S. history. Nearly 600,000 people marched in Washington D.C. in support of women’s rights and related causes. Simultaneous protests drew large crowds across all 50 U.S. states and on all seven continents. USA Today estimated that 2.5 million people participated in the Women’s Marches globally.

The marches included well-known activists, political figures, and celebrities such as Gloria Steinem, Angela Davis, U.S. Senator Cory Booker, former U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, Jamie Lee Curtis, America Ferrera, Jake and Maggie Gyllenhaal, Alicia Keys, John Legend, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Madonna, Ian McKellen, Helen Mirren, Lypita Nyong’o, Amy Poehler, Julia Roberts, and Emma Watson.

The Women’s Marches got a lot of online media coverage and you can see some pretty great pictures of it here, here, here, here, and here.

The Trump administration gets to work

The Trump administration

Trump announced the appointment of White House staffers including former Apprentice contestant Omarosa Manigault as director of communications for the office of public liaison. You can see a list of Trump’s appointments and Cabinet picks here.

Trump continued to nominate people to lead agencies whose work they have a history of undermining. For Health and Human Services Secretary, Trump tapped Tom Price. He is a wealthy orthopaedic surgeon and a staunch conservative who has sought to limit damages in malpractice cases, opposed regulating tobacco as a drug, and voted against lowering drug prices for Medicare beneficiaries.

Trump nominated Betsy DeVos for Education Secretary. Born to a billionaire industrialist and married to the heir of Amway, DeVos has spent 30 years pushing for school vouchers that would allow students to attend private schools with public funding. DeVos’s brother is Erik Prince, the former U.S. Navy SEAL officer best known for founding the government services and security company Blackwater USA. According to the Intercept, he’s been advising the Trump team on intelligence and defence.

The Guardian’s George Monbiot takes a look at other Trump staffers.

“Over this time, I have watched as tobacco, coal, oil, chemicals and biotech companies have poured billions of dollars into an international misinformation machine composed of thinktanks, bloggers and fake citizens’ groups. Its purpose is to portray the interests of billionaires as the interests of the common people, to wage war against trade unions and beat down attempts to regulate business and tax the very rich. Now the people who helped run this machine are shaping the government.”

Despite this, Trump’s administration is pretty empty. Out of 690 key positions requiring Senate confirmation, Trump has only come up with about 30 people. Beyond the Cabinet, there are about 4,000 positions that need to be filled. These include Cabinet secretaries, deputy and assistant secretaries, chief financial officers, general counsel, heads of agencies, ambassadors and other leadership positions. You can follow that here and here.

What does it mean to have all these vacancies? It means the government can’t do its job very well, which affects morale, which leads to worse performance. With a bunch of empty desks, it also means Trump will be no match against the entrenched bureaucracy. It’s possible that Trump might want to outsource these jobs or bypass them and run the country from the White House, but that would not end well. It’s more likely that Trump just doesn’t know what he’s doing and his team lack the management experience to run a large bureaucracy.

Stephen Bannon, Trump’s favourite white supremacist and poster child for “alternative facts”, is now sitting on the National Security Council because why not.

Trump nominated Judge Neil M. Gorsuch to the Supreme Court to take the seat vacated by the death of Justice Antonin Scalia. It’s worth remembering that Republicans refused to consider President Obama’s choice to succeed Justice Scalia. Democrats have promised a showdown over Judge Gorsuch’s confirmation so now the GOP is thinking of gutting the filibuster.

The executive orders

In his first days as president, Trump signed several executive orders and presidential memoranda. These are basically directives from the president to federal administrative agencies. They are subject to judicial review and may be struck down if deemed to be unsupported by statute or the Constitution.

Trump’s executive orders are:

  1. Minimizing the Economic Burden of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act Pending Repeal – This is designed to repeal the ACA even though there’s no replacement.
  2. Expediting Environmental Reviews and Approvals for High Priority Infrastructure Projects
  3. Border Security and Immigration Enforcement Improvements – This one includes the call for  the”immediate construction of a physical wall on the southern border”.
  4. Enhancing Public Safety in the Interior of the United States – This one includes the targetting of sanctuary cities.
  5. Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States
  6. Ethics Commitments by Executive Branch Employees
  7. Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs – Directs agencies to repeal two existing regulations for every new regulation.

This last one, number six, is the so-called “extreme vetting” order or Muslim Ban. Issued on Holocaust Remembrance Day, it does a lot of things including the following:

  • suspends the visas of “Nationals of Countries of Particular Concern”
  • suspends the entry of immigrants and nonimmigrants from Muslim-majority countries for 90 days
  • suspends the entry of other refugees for 120 days
  • indefinitely suspends the entry of Syrians
  • prioritises Christian refugees
  • caps the entry of refugees at 50,000 in 2017
  • suspends the Visa Interview Waiver Program, which requires that all individuals seeking a nonimmigrant visa undergo an in-person interview, subject to specific statutory exceptions

Within two days, over 350 travellers were affected, detained at airports and deported, including visiting artists and scholars, students, an Army interpreter, a five-year-old boy, and other green card and visa holders. One woman attempted suicide inside New York’s John F. Kennedy Airport. Protests erupted all over the country. The order was met with global backlash. A State Department dissent cable asserting that Trump’s executive order would not make the nation safer spread like a chain letter collecting 1,000 signatures from American embassies around the world.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) filed a lawsuit on behalf of two Iraqis that were detained at JFK Airport. Federal District Court Judge Ann M. Donnelly blocked part of the order, ruling that refugees, naturalised citizens, visa holders, and green-card holders from the seven affected countries could not be sent back to their home countries. The court did not address whether the order is constitutional and a hearing is scheduled in February. Similar stays have been issued in other cases in Virginia and Washington. Lawyers have said that authorities were unwilling to follow judges’ rulings.

Not surprisingly, Trump, the Department of Homeland Security, and Priebus have defended the order. Trump even fired acting attorney general Sally Yates after she ordered Justice Department lawyers not to defend his immigration order. House Democrats are preparing to file legislation that would effectively overturn Trump’s order.

The presidential memoranda

Trump has issued ten presidential memoranda:

  1. Regulatory Freeze Pending Review for the Heads of Executive Departments and Agencies
  2. Regarding the Hiring Freeze – This institutes a 90-day hiring freeze for federal employees and work towards a long-term workforce reduction plan.
  3. Barring international non-governmental organisations that perform or promote abortions from receiving US government funding
  4. Withdrawal of the United States from the Trans-Pacific Partnership
  5. Regarding Construction of American Pipelines – Prioritizes U.S. -produced materials and equipment.
  6. Revival of Keystone Pipeline – This refers to a controversial oil pipeline system in Canada and the U.S. Obama rejected it due to its many environmental, indigenous, safety, political, economic, and diplomatic issues.
  7. Revival of Dakota Access Pipeline – See above. The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe tweeted that it will take legal action.
  8. Reducing Regulatory Burdens for Domestic Manufacturing
  9. Rebuilding the U.S. Armed Forces
  10. Plan to Defeat the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria – Through an interagency process, this calls for a new plan to defeat ISIS.
  11. Organization of the National Security Council and the Homeland Security Council – Outlines Trump’s system for national security policy development and decision-making.

Let’s talk about number three on this list. It refers to the Mexico City policy, also called the global gag rule by some human rights organisations. Enacted by Republican President Ronald Reagan in 1984, this policy prohibits the granting of American foreign aid to health providers abroad who discuss abortion as a family-planning option. It was rescinded by Democratic President Bill Clinton in January 1993, re-instituted in January 2001 by Republican President George W. Bush, rescinded on January 23, 2009 by Democratic President Barack Obama, and reinstated on January 23, 2017 by Republican President Trump. See the pattern here?

Trump signs executive orders

Just a bunch of wealthy white dudes making decisions on the reproductive rights of women and girls. Image: AFP/Saul Loeb.

Trump has pushed it further. It stops funding to nongovernmental organisations in poor countries if they offer abortion counselling or if they advocate the right to seek abortion in their countries. The light at the end of this very dark tunnel is that the Netherlands has committed $10 million to replace funding and Canada may also contribute.

You can read all of the executive orders and presidential memoranda here.

The digital handover

For me in Australia, the inauguration happened around 3 a.m. I didn’t get up to watch it. In the morning, I checked Twitter and was confused when I saw that I was following  Trump. Then I realised it was the @POTUS account, which is now Trump’s (though he’s still tweeting from his personal account as well).

Obama’s tweets have been archived at @POTUS44 and the Obama administration tweets are now archived at @ObamaWhiteHouse. His personal account is @BarackObama. Similarly, the @FLOTUS account now belongs to Melania Trump. The former First Lady’s archives are at @FLOTUS44 and Michelle’s personal account is @MichelleObama. The @VP account is now Pence’s and Biden’s archives are at @VP44. The same has happened on Facebook. The tone is very different now on the White House Twitter and Facebook accounts (so are the facts).

The White House website had a makeover too. Obama’s White House has been archived. Other than the normal aesthetic changes, gone is all the information on civil rights, climate change, LGBT rights, healthcare, immigration, education and the “Iran Deal”. The Spanish-language version of the website is gone too. The contact page now has a submission form instead of phone numbers; the comment line has been closed.

The chopping block

The Hill reported that the Trump team has been outlining plans for shrinking the federal bureaucracy. TIME/Money has a list of 17 federal agencies and programs that could get the ax. These include the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, the National Endowment for the Arts,  the Office of Violence Against Women, Legal Services, the Civil Rights Division of the Justice Department, and the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

The war on terrorism

Trump ordered his first clandestine strike and almost everything went wrong.

Government workers go rogue

On January 20, the National Park Service’s official Twitter account re-posted two tweets that Trump didn’t like. The first was  Binyamin Appelbaum’s tweet of the inauguration crowds shown earlier in this entry. The second was about several omissions of policy areas on the new White House website, as previously mentioned. The Interior Department then circulated an “urgent directive” from the incoming administration instructing social media managers at the department and its bureaus to “shut down Twitter platforms immediately until further notice.” The ban was lifted the following day and the accounts were reactivated; an NPS spokesman said that the posts were “mistaken” re-tweets and issued an apology.

Badlands National Park in North Dakota started tweeting scientific findings about climate change. Hours later the tweets were deleted and the Trump administration had instituted a media blackout at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), the Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of Transportation, and the National Park Service. The National Park Service told news agencies that a former employee wrote these tweets and that that’s why they were deleted. Some people were not convinced, however, and congratulated the Badlands National Park for its defiance, dubbing them #Badasslands.

Some of these bans have been lifted or relaxed, but it was enough to make government workers take matters into their own hands. Scientists are planning a march, penning open letters, backing up data, sharing facts, and – my favourite – creating renegade social media accounts. I’ve collected 41 Twitter accounts into a single list that you can subscribe to here.

And the U.S. Department of Defense tweeted this gem:

The tweet includes a link to a story on social media tools for improving mental health and reducing suicide in the military, but that didn’t stop Twitter users from wondering if the tweet was really about Trump.

What you can do

Stay informed without losing your mind

The amount of information can be overwhelming and it’s exhausting to keep up with. First, read this article: How to #StayOutraged Without Losing Your Mind.

Second, remember that you don’t have to sit there and take all the Trump news missiles coming at you. It’s okay to unplug and to unfollow people. Note that unfollowing doesn’t mean unfriending. It just means the posts won’t appear in your newsfeed. You can also organise friends into lists (note that lists can’t be viewed on the Facebook mobile app). You can do the same on Twitter.

Consume information how and when you want it. If you want bullet points and brief explanations, check out Trump Status Center. If you want a curated collection of articles, check out corrupt.af. Matt Ortega, a former senior staffer for Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton’s campaign, launched this website that collects articles scrutinising Trump’s possible ethical quandaries and even allows users to submit their own links. The Guardian is tracking the first 100 days of Trump and presenting them in small, interactive chunks. BuzzFeed has a running list of Trump’s lies.

Learn the tactics

According to political commentator Robert Reich, tyrants have historically tried to control the press using four techniques. He explains them in this video.

A group of  former congressional staffers created a guide for resisting the Trump agenda on Google Docs. The response was so overwhelming that they’ve gone on to form a nonprofit and a new website. The Indivisible Guide covers grassroots advocacy and best practices for dealing with Congress members.

If you belong to the camp that wants to treat Trump with as much respect as conservatives have shown Obama, then I suggest you read A Handy Guide to Disrespecting Cheeto Satan From Inauguration and Beyond. For those of you writing about Trump in blogs or on social media, here’s a handy style guide.

Stay active

If you’re the boycotting kind, here’s a list of companies that do business with Trump.

Keep contacting your senator and local representatives. Thank them if they’ve performed well on something that matters to you. If  you’re in California, give San Francisco a high-five for suing Trump over his order to withhold federal funding from sanctuary cities. And continue to express your concerns and opposition to Trump’s choices and policies.

Get involved with a cause you’re passionate about. Having that community will help you get through these difficult, stressful times. Charities need your help. Donate your time and/or money. The ACLU, the National Immigration Law Center, and humanitarian groups have reported an increase in donations. Trump raised $11 million in December for his reelection so we are in for a long fight.

Cheer up!

If it looks crazy from the outside, imagine what it’s like on the inside. Here are a few articles worth reading:

Take care of yourself and each other.

For more roundups about the Trumpocalypse, click here.

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