As Friday the 13th goes dark in DC, impeachment sponsors should not despair. There is more than one way to depose a despot.
“Impeachments take time: months, if not longer — even with an enthusiastic Congress,” notes Georgetown University’s Rosa Brooks, weighing options to dump Trump. “And when you have a lunatic controlling the nuclear codes, even a few months seems like a perilously long time to wait. How long will it take before Trump decides that ‘you’re fired’ is a phrase that should also apply to nuclear missiles? (Aimed, perhaps, at Mexico?)”
Whether today’s US military strike on Syria was launched to distract attention from special prosecutor Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian meddling in Trump’s election is a matter of speculation. But it effectively did just that — for the moment.
Professor Brooks considers other possibilities for regime change; a favorable outcome to the November 2020 presidential election, should any semblance of democracy remain from the trials of intervening years. Or an appeal to Vice President Mike Pence’s ambitions, should Trump cabinet members be inclined to oust their boss and replace him with his vice president. An even more unlikely projection: a military coup — “or at least a refusal by military leaders to obey certain orders.”
But she misses a fifth possible course of action, a move exemplified early into the Trump administration by acting attorney general Sally Yates: the refusal of millions of people across this country to follow his command.
Yates cautions against accepting Trump’s presidency as a new normal, saying it’s up to the public to ensure that does not happen. “We can’t control what President Trump does, but we can control how we respond to it. I get that’s it’s exhausting, the onslaught on a daily basis of things that are not normal,” she said. “It’s calling him out, it’s making sure that we don’t normalize it; we make sure that we plant a flag about who we are as a country and we hold on to that and make sure no one takes that away from us.”
It’s possible to imagine a new construct of American ethics, freed of the exploitation foundational to capitalist imperialism. To borrow from the new Call to Action by RefuseFascism.org:
Imagine tens of thousands beginning in several cities and towns, with marches, candlelight vigils, rallies – students, religious communities, immigrants, everyone with a heart for humanity in the streets and not backing down – growing from thousands to hundreds of thousands and eventually millions. Our actions will reflect the values of respect for all of humanity and the world we want – in stark contrast to the hate and bigotry of the Trump/Pence fascist regime. The whole world will take heart.
In the Name of Humanity, We REFUSE to Accept a Fascist America!
This Nightmare Must End: The Trump/Pence Regime Must Go!