Seth Ickes, President of the Clarion Young Democrats
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Protesting and demonstrating are a fundamental right that all citizens should employ and use as they see fit. Peaceful assembly and freedom to openly criticize your government are two American principles so important they’re written directly into our Bill of Rights in the first amendment as “Congress shall make no law…abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble.”
With Donald Trump allies and the proposed Trump administration’s heavy criticism of protests around the country, it is important to remember that no matter how many times Rudy Giuliani refers to you as “goons and thugs,” “spoiled crybabies,” “professional protestors,” claims you’re simply “exaggerating” your fears of President-elect Trump’s administration, or perhaps refers to your civil rights movement as “inherently racist” your voice is being heard.
When Trump, Rudy Giuliani, or alt-right, white nationalist favorite Steve Bannon (future White House Chief Strategist) tries to stamp out your voice with a 3 a.m. tweet crying that you are “unfair,” they do it because they’re afraid of your voice.
If you are dissatisfied with the state of your country right now, don’t let the media normalize the Trump administration, don’t let the media normalize hate and racism and don’t “give the Trump administration a chance.” Do not let calls of divisiveness from a party who vowed to block all legislation from President Barack Obama on day one, and refused to do their jobs as congressmen and consider Obama’s Supreme Court appointment stop your voice.
The next four years are set to be a test of our freedoms to voice our opinions of our government, mainly because our President-elect can’t handle any criticism. So I encourage you to peacefully organize, donate some money to Planned Parenthood in Mike Pence’s name, and get in some Facebook political arguments because your voice is yours.
Call your congressman and tell him that the Trump administration is a disgrace, leave House Majority leader Paul Ryan a voicemail letting him know that Steve Bannon’s appointment as Chief Strategist is dangerous and unprecedented. Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, go volunteer your time with Planned Parenthood, the Human Rights campaign and other worthwhile nonprofit organizations as they need your help now more than ever.