We Resist: Day 217

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One of the difficulties in resisting the Trump administration, the Republican Congressional majority, and Republican state legislatures is keeping on top of the sheer number of horrors, indignities, and normalization of the aggressively abnormal that they unleash every single day.

So here is a daily thread for all of us to share all the things that are going on, thus crowdsourcing a daily compendium of the onslaught of conservative erosion of our rights and our very democracy.

Stay engaged. Stay vigilant. Resist.

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Here are some things in the news today:

Earlier today by me: No YOU'RE Divisive! and Another Reason Trump Isn't Fit to Be President and This Seems Important.

[Content Note: Trans hatred] Caitlin MacNeal at TPM: White House to Direct Military to Bar Transgender People from Enlisting. "Nearly a month after [Donald] Trump announced in a series of tweets that he would ban transgender individuals from serving in the military, the White House is prepared to send guidance to the Pentagon on the implementation of the ban, the Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday night. Defense Secretary James Mattis will have six months to put the new policy in place, according to the Wall Street Journal. The memo directs the military to reject transgender people who apply to serve and orders the Pentagon to stop paying for medical services for the transgender troops already serving."

1. Are transgender service members feeling "much more proud than they were last year at this time" do you think?

2. In good news, GLBTQ Legal Advocates & Defenders (GLADLaw) is already all over it.

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[CN: White supremacy] Addy Baird at ThinkProgress: Trump Retweets Bigoted Conspiracy Theorist. "Donald Trump retweeted a meme from an account Thursday morning that has pushed conspiracy theories, advocated violence against protesters, and seems to believe white Americans are under attack for being white. The retweet came in the midst of a tweetstorm ridden with basic grammar mistakes in which Trump attacked both Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI), as well as the 'Fake News' media." And the tweet that Trump decided was so important he just had to retweet it?

The image is of Trump "eclipsing" President Obama by slowly moving in front of him, accompanied by text reading: "THE BEST ECLIPSE EVER!"

I mean, apart from the fact that Trump (1) retweeted a white supremacist to (2) insult Obama yet again, he also (3) showed what a complete dipshit he is, as sharing this meme means he's proudly bragging about being a cold, lifeless body blocking out the sunshine, i.e. Obama. Good grief this guy.

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Josh Dawsey and Elana Schor at Politico: Trump Clashed with Multiple GOP Senators over Russia. "Trump's chewing out of GOP senators, according to people briefed on the calls, reflected the president's frustration that fellow Republicans would make moves that could damage him, particularly on an investigation that he detests. Trump also complained about the Russian sanctions measure in a call with McConnell earlier this month that devolved into shouting. ...'It seems he is just always focused on Russia,' one senior GOP aide said." Very reassuring that there's nothing for investigators to uncover. Ahem.

[CN: Video may autoplay at link] Margaret Talev and Jennifer Jacobs at Bloomberg: General Kelly Commands the White House, But He Can't Control Trump. That's...quite a headline. Some amazing parsing there. Anyway. "Trump's appointment of Kelly has imposed new order on a White House that had been riven with infighting among warring camps. But it hasn't been the political lifeline Republican allies had hoped for, as Kelly has so far been unable to perform one of the chief of staff's most basic duties: to stop a president from following his worst instincts. Trump's controversial initial response to the violence in Charlottesville, compounded by an off-the-cuff press conference days later and then defended again in a divisive, revisionist speech Tuesday in Phoenix, have laid bare the limits of Kelly's ability to manage his boss." Hahahahaha ya think?!

Eric Holthaus at Grist: A Texas-Size Flood Threatens the Gulf Coast, and We're So Not Ready.
In what could become the first major natural disaster of the Trump presidency, meteorologists are sounding the alarm for potentially historic rainfall over the next several days in parts of Texas and Louisiana. This is the kind of storm you drop everything to pay attention to.

The National Weather Service posted a hurricane and storm surge watch for most of the Texas coastline, and the governors of Texas and Louisiana have begun to assemble emergency response teams. Hurricane hunter aircraft are monitoring the development of the storm, which was just west of Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula on Wednesday afternoon.

...The National Hurricane Center expects Harvey to stall out once it reaches the Texas coastline on Friday, and experts are worried about what might happen next. The official NHC forecast calls for the possibility of more than 20 inches of rain in isolated parts of Texas and Louisiana by next Wednesday, but some individual weather models predict twice that.
Has anyone even tried to talk to Donald Trump about this impending potential disaster? Or do they know that he won't care and won't instruct anyone to prepare? Is anyone in place to make sure that federal preparations are made, irrespective of the president's indifference? Are there even sufficient funds available to ensure sufficient federal disaster readiness and response? I don't know the answer to any of these questions. It took Trump six months to install a new FEMA chief, so Brock Long has only had two months to acquaint himself with the job.

[CN: Image of rats] Emily Atkin at the New Republic: America Is on the Verge of Ratpocalypse. "Warmer weather is fueling a rodent surge, straining public health systems and the economy. It's time for the federal government to step in." Not good. Especially since it requires attention from the federal government, which is intractably dysfunctional at the moment and for the foreseeable future. (No jokes comparing Trump and/or his supporters to rats, please. Not only does comparing people to vermin have an ugly eliminationist history, but it's frankly an insult to rats, which are highly intelligent and sensitive creatures. It's not their fault they carry disease!)

Dana Liebelson at the Huffington Post: Infrastructure Advisers Quit; Say Trump's Actions Threaten Homeland Security. "Another White House council has taken a hit after [Donald] Trump's controversial response to a deadly white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia. Seven members of the National Infrastructure Advisory Council, which includes Obama appointees, resigned this week, citing Trump's Charlottesville response and other issues. 'Your actions have threatened the security of the homeland I took an oath to protect,' the resigning members wrote in a letter sent Monday and obtained by HuffPost. ...'You failed to denounce the intolerance and violence of hate groups,' the letter read."

[CN: Video may autoplay at link] David Edwards at Raw Story: White House 'Rapid Response' Director Quits — and It Takes Trump Staff Three Days to Admit It. [Insert your own jokes here.] "After three days, the Trump administration admitted this week that Andy Hemming, the White House director of rapid response, has quit. ...Although Hemming declined to comment on leaving, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders confirmed the news. Sanders told Politico that there was a '[m]utual decision that he could best help promote the president's agenda on the outside. Andy is smart and very talented and we wish him all the best.'" I don't know what "on the outside" means, but I guess we should pay attention to see if he ends up working with Bannon.

[CN: Violence; transphobia] Nassim Benchaabane at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch: Driver Pushes into Protesters in St. Louis Street; 3 People Sustain Minor Injuries. There are competing accounts of what happened here. Witnesses say the driver accelerated his car into protesters at a vigil for Kiwi Herring, a trans woman who was fatally shot by police. Police say protesters were injured after jumping onto the car. To me, this seems very telling: "[Witness Keith] Rose said other drivers had turned off onto side streets rather than driving through the group." Mm-hmm.

In tentative good news...

James Barragán at the Dallas News: Federal Judge Blocks Further Implementation of Texas' Voter ID Law. "A federal judge in Corpus Christi blocked further implementation of Texas' controversial voter identification law, after finding for a second time that it intentionally discriminates against minorities. In a court order Wednesday, U.S. District Judge Nelva Gonzales Ramos blocked Texas from implementing portions of the 2011 voter ID law, which was considered to be one of the strictest in the country. And in a striking blow to the state, she blocked entirely a revamp to the law that the Texas Legislature passed earlier this year as Senate Bill 5. The legislation was an effort to appease Ramos and do away with the finding of discriminatory intent."

Rick Hasen has more at Election Law Blog, including information on what happens next.

What have you been reading that we need to resist today?

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