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Swamp Revolt

‘‘The Resistance’ sounds like the team you want to be on’

Editor’s Note: We made the news! Amy Ard, founder of the Swamp Revolt, recently spoke with Yahoo News for this article “On the left, a call to ‘Resist’ Donald Trump.” What we are doing here counts. Thanks for being on Team Resist!

A few weeks after Donald Trump won the election, Neera Tanden, the president of the liberal think tank Center for American Progress, changed her Twitter photo from a headshot to a yellow square with a single word written in black.

“Resist,” her new profile photo said.

The word has become the unified rallying cry of the anti-Trump center-left since the reality show star’s upset victory in November — popping up everywhere from angry post-election hashtags to social media posts encouraging inauguration protests to Chuck Schumer’s opening speech on the floor of the Senate last week. Weeks before Trump was scheduled to take the oath of office, liberals began urging each other to form a “resistance” to push back against his promises of disruptive change — language that is far stronger than that used by minority parties in recent history. At the Department of Justice holiday party last month, Matt Miller, the former spokesman and a fierce Trump critic, even handed out pins with the Cross of Lorraine on them — a symbol of the French Resistance.

“Resistance became a watchword from Day One,” said Ben Wikler, the Washington director of the grassroots liberal organization MoveOn.

The night after Trump’s victory, MoveOn called for protests they described as “gatherings of solidarity, resistance and resolve.” Of those terms, the word “resistance” was the one that stuck out — and stuck. Wikler said it draws power from the way it evokes the image of the good guys fighting back against oppressive regimes in history and fiction, “from the French Resistance through the spirit of the rebel alliance in ‘Star Wars,’” which was again gaining attention thanks to the December release of the film “Rogue One.”

Grassroots activists have embraced the language, with the group carrying out civil disobedience actions at Trump Tower in Manhattan calling itself Rise & Resist. Since the election, Center for American Progress’ political action branch, Thinkprogress, has raised $200,000 selling black shirts that say “Resist” in white lettering. Last week, it was what a protester screamed when he interrupted incoming Trump press secretary Sean Spicer at a panel at the University of Chicago’s Institute of Politics. “This is not normal, people!” the activist shouted, before being escorted outside. “Stand up and resist!” Continue reading “‘‘The Resistance’ sounds like the team you want to be on’”

Healing Waters

Yesterday, a part of me healed. The tiny little worried voice inside that still wondered whether any of us could really make a difference received the resounding answer —WE CAN AND WE WILL.

I spent the day with about 70 committed, brilliant, insightful, and determined men and women who were undeterred by our first slick snow to attend our Swamp Revolt Active Bystander Train-the-Trainers event. Led by the Montgomery County Civil Rights Coalition, we now have a band of seasoned activists ready to unleash on the city on January 20th.

On January 20th, we will host active bystander trainings across the D.C. metro region. We will offer participants useful tools to use in situations where they find themselves witness to acts of aggression and verbal abuse. Participants will learn how to deescalate hate speech and harassment and better understand what it means to (safely) stick up for our neighbor with compassion and resolve.

I knew this training was, sadly, necessary. What I now fully believe is that this form of activism has the power to transform our entire movement. One person, one encounter at a time, we can help to create the kind of world we long to see.

In the coming days, we will share more information about how to register for the events on January 20th. And we’ll ask you all to share widely with anyone who might be coming in for the march on the following day.

There is a better way to spend inauguration day than hiding under the covers. I believe training for the resistance is arguably more productive. Come join us, there are healing waters in this swamp.

-Amy Ard

Hundreds Complete Nonviolence & Active Bystander Intervention Trainings on #J20

While Mr. Trump took the oath of office on Friday, Jan. 20, Swamp Revolt trained more than 1,500 people in nonviolence and active bystander intervention at locations across the D.C. metro area.

In three-hour trainings held at 23 locations around the DMV, participants learned how to respond helpfully and nonviolently when witnessing hate speech or harassment,

The trainings were free, led by trained volunteers and organized by Swamp Revolt in preparation for the Women’s March on Washington (Jan. 21). See below for the list of trainings. Thanks to all of the host locations and volunteers!

  • Alexandria, VA – Fairlington Presbyterian Church
  • Arlington, VA – The Teal Center
  • Baltimore, MD – Community Engagement Center, University of Maryland – Baltimore
  • Bethesda, MD – St. Luke’s Episcopal Church
  • College Park, MD – College Park Church of the Nazarene
  • Hyattsville, MD – Hyattsville Mennonite Church
  • Kensington, MD – Montgomery County Democratic Central Committee
  • Poolesville, MD – St. Peter’s Episcopal Church
  • Rockville, MD – Twinbrook Baptist Church
  • Silver Spring, MD – Grace Episcopal Church
  • Silver Spring, MD – Silver Spring Presbyterian Church
  • Silver Spring, MD – Silver Spring United Methodist Church
  • Takoma Park, MD – Takoma Park Presbyterian Church Gym
  • Washington, DC – House in Mt. Pleasant
  • Washington, DC – Friends Meeting of Washington
  • Washington, DC – The Potter’s House
  • Washington, DC – St. Stephen and the Incarnation Episcopal Church
  • Washington, DC – The Table Church
  • Washington, DC – The Well
  • Washington, DC – Washington City Church of the Brethren
  • Washington, DC – Washington School of Psychiatry
  • Washington, DC – Yoga Heights

 

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