We Resist: Day 399

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One of the difficulties in resisting the Trump administration, the Republican Congressional majority, and Republican state legislatures (plus the occasional non-Republican who obliges us to resist their nonsense, too, like we don't have enough to worry about) 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 Fannie: Free, Unsolicited Advice to White Male Democratic* Politicians. And by me: Trump Doesn't Feel Your Pain and The Moderating Generals Are Getting Marginalized.

[Content Note: Gun violence. Covers entire section.]

Louis Nelson and Cristiano Lima at Politico: Trump Defends Gun Proposals in Twitter Spree.
Trump claimed Thursday morning that he did not suggest the blanket arming of teachers at a White House listening session a day earlier, accusing CNN and NBC News of misinterpreting his proposal.

Trump claimed Thursday morning that he did not suggest the blanket arming of teachers at a White House listening session a day earlier, accusing CNN and NBC News of misinterpreting his proposal.

"I never said 'give teachers guns' like was stated on Fake News @CNN & @nbc. What I said was to look at the possibility of giving concealed guns to gun adept teachers with military or special training experience - only the best. 20% of teachers, a lot, would now be able to immediately fire back if a savage sicko came to a school with bad intentions," the president wrote on Twitter Thursday morning in a pair of posts.

"Highly trained teachers would also serve as a deterrent to the cowards that do this. Far more assets at much less cost than guards. A 'gun free' school is a magnet for bad people. ATTACKS WOULD END!" he tweeted. "History shows that a school shooting lasts, on average, 3 minutes. It takes police & first responders approximately 5 to 8 minutes to get to site of crime. Highly trained, gun adept, teachers/coaches would solve the problem instantly, before police arrive. GREAT DETERRENT!"

"If a potential 'sicko shooter' knows that a school has a large number of very weapons talented teachers (and others) who will be instantly shooting, the sicko will NEVER attack that school. Cowards won't go there...problem solved. Must be offensive, defense alone won't work!" the president continued.

Trump's online explanation of his proposal differs from the language he used Wednesday at a listening session with survivors and victims' family members from last week's high school shooting in Parkland, Florida. Addressing the group, Trump suggested that teachers undergo firearm training and be allowed to carry concealed weapons inside schools.

"And this would only be, obviously, for people that are very adept at handling a gun. And it would be – it's called concealed carry, where a teacher would have a concealed gun on them," Trump said at Wednesday's event. "They'd go for special training. And they would be there, and you would no longer have a gun-free zone."
Totally coherent, as usual.

There are so many problems with the proposal to arm teachers as a solution to school shootings, I hardly know where to begin.

Public schoolteachers are already tasked with being surrogate parents, therapists, social workers, mentors, and role models in addition to being educators — and in many places they're not even paid enough to cover one of those jobs, no less all of them. They don't need to be asked to be bodyguards, too.

I happen to be the daughter of retired public schoolteachers, and three of my oldest friends are public schoolteachers, and many more friends are professors and librarians and administrators, and not a single one of the educators I know — some of whom are Republican, though not Trump supporters — wants to carry a gun as part of their job, because they damn well know that a gun is more likely to be used to hurt them and others by a dangerous student than it is likely to be used to protect anyone!

I mean, forget how aggressively, stupidly impractical a solution this is sheerly because most people, even well-trained gun users, are incapable of hitting the broad side of a barn under pressure. The liability that it asks teachers to assume! My mom — who is now retired — used to lament that she couldn't hug students (who wanted hugs) anymore because it was a liability issue for the school. (Thanks to teachers who abused students.) It's unbelievable that we're contemplating spaces where teachers can't hug students who desperately need and want affection, but they can definitely SHOOT AT STUDENTS. My god.

And about those teachers who abuse students: Should they have guns? (No.)

Like I said, there are so many reasons that this is a terrible idea. Trump can twist himself into giant rhetorical pretzels supporting the proposal while also not supporting the proposal and then supporting some variation on the proposal and blah blah fart forever, but it will never be a good idea. Never.


Nicole Lafond at TPM: Trump: People Just Don't Get That NRA Heads Are 'Great American Patriots'! "Donald Trump on Thursday claimed that people 'don't understand' that the National Rifle Association's leadership are 'Great American Patriots,' a week after 17 people died in a school shooting in Parkland, Florida. Trump tweeted that people 'don't understand' or 'don't want to understand' that NRA CEO Wayne LaPierre and executive director Chris Cox are 'Great People and Great American Patriots.' 'They love our Country and will do the right thing,' Trump tweeted."

Yeahno. They won't. "NRA goes on the offensive after Parkland shooting, assailing media and calling for more armed school security." See?

Addy Baird at ThinkProgress: Father of Slain Student Confronts Marco Rubio in an Epic Exchange. "Sen. Marco Rubio defended his opposition to an assault weapons ban Wednesday night at a town hall, where he was pushed by the father of a teenage victim of last week's school shooting in Parkland, Florida that left 17 people dead. 'I want to like you. Here's the problem. And I'm a brutally honest person so I'm just going to say it up front,' Fred Guttenberg, the father of Jaime Guttenberg said. 'Your comments this week and those of our president have been pathetically weak.' The audience at the town hall responded to Guttenberg's comment with a standing ovation as Guttenberg went on, saying, 'Look at me and tell me. Guns were the factor in the hunting of our kids in this school this week.'"

E.J. Dionne Jr. at the Washington Post: Why Is Only One Side in the Gun Culture War Required to Show Respect? "Supporters of even modest restrictions on firearms are...urged to be patient and to spend our time listening earnestly to the views of those who see even a smidgen of action to limit access to guns as the first step toward confiscation. Our task is not to fight for laws to protect innocents, but to demonstrate that we really, honestly, truly, cross-our-hearts, positively love gun owners and wouldn't for an instant think anything ill of them. What is odd is that those with extreme pro-gun views — those pushing for new laws to allow people to carry just about anytime, anywhere — are never called upon to model similar empathy toward children killed, the mourning parents left behind, people in urban neighborhoods suffering from violence, or the majority of Americans who don't own guns."

This is related to a subject about which I've written previously: No-Gun Culture. We don't even acknowledge that there's such a thing as a no-gun culture in the United States, no less that it deserves respect, too.

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Here are some cool things that are happening in the Age of Trump:

E.A. Crunden at ThinkProgress: Global Human Rights Are Under Siege in the Trump Era.

Guardian Staff: Number of Female Hollywood Leads Fell in 2017, Study Shows.

No difference between Trump and Clinton, they said. Identity politics don't matter, they said.

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Not exclusively to feminists and the LGBTQ community, mind you. Graham was also anti-Semitic and racist and Christian Supremacist, but he had the (undeserved) reputation of being religiously and racially tolerant. He had a well-known and explicit reputation for being anti-feminist and anti-queer, though.

And, naturally, this is offensive to lots of people, regardless of their own personal faith beliefs, who believe in a firm separation of church and state. Just gross.

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[CN: Anti-choice terrorism] Auditi Guha at Rewire: New Jersey Planned Parenthood Clinic to Close for Weeks After 'Intentional' Truck Attack. "A Planned Parenthood clinic in New Jersey will be closed several weeks for repairs after a man allegedly drove a truck into it and injured three, including a pregnant woman. Marckles Alcius, 31, of Lowell, Massachusetts, is accused of driving a stolen bakery delivery truck into an East Orange clinic on February 14. He faces charges included six counts of aggravated assault, two weapons offenses for using a truck as a weapon, theft of a vehicle, and attempting to cause widespread injury or damage. ...'Our contention is this was an intentional act, not a motor vehicle accident,' [Essex County Prosecutor's Office spokesperson Katherine Carter] said in an email. ...Authorities have not disclosed a possible motive for the crash as the incident is under investigation, but some media outlets have noted the defendant's views on social media, including an article he shared from the anti-abortion group Live Action last July."

[CN: Video may autoplay at link] Ali Dukakis at ABC News: Trump-Appointed Judge Who Donated to Campaign Refuses to Recuse Himself from Dossier Matter. "A Trump-appointed federal judge who donated to the Trump campaign and worked on his presidential transition team has rejected requests to recuse himself from overseeing a legal battle involving Fusion GPS, the research firm that commissioned the so-called 'dossier' of unverified intelligence that contains claims about Donald Trump's alleged ties to Russia. U.S. District Court Judge Trevor McFadden, who sits on the bench in Washington, D.C., made two donations to Trump's presidential campaign totaling $1000 in October 2016 – both coming within three weeks of Election Day, documents filed with the Federal Election Commission show. 'Fusion's argument that I should look beyond the traditional grounds of disqualification to consider [Donald] Trump's alleged political interests proves too much,' McFadden wrote in an opinion. 'Such an argument would lead to the disqualification of numerous judges appointed by the sitting president on a wide range of cases.'"

Jason Samenow at the Washington Post: Arctic Temperatures Soar 45 Degrees Above Normal, Flooded by Extremely Mild Air on All Sides. "While the Eastern United States simmers in some of its warmest February weather ever recorded, the Arctic is also stewing in temperatures more than 45 degrees above normal. This latest huge temperature spike in the Arctic is another striking indicator of its rapidly transforming climate." Sob.

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

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