We Resist: Day 515

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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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Earlier today by me: Monday Morning Reading on Trump's Nativist Abuse and "This is a public health issue." and I Write Letters.

Here are some more things in the news today...

Philip Oltermann and Julian Borger at the Guardian: Trump Says Germans 'Turning Against Their Leadership' over Immigration.
Donald Trump has launched an unprecedented attack on Angela Merkel's government, tweeting that "the people of Germany are turning against their leadership as migration is rocking the already tenuous Berlin coalition."

...In his latest tweet, Trump said "crime in Germany is way up." In May, Germany's interior ministry recorded the lowest crime levels since 1992.

"Big mistake made all over Europe in allowing millions of people in who have so strongly and violently changed their culture!" he added.

In a second tweet, Trump noted: "We don't want what is happening with immigration in Europe to happen with us!"

...The U.S. president's tweets come just as Merkel has managed to buy time in a tense standoff with her interior minister over new immigration curbs. She faces a two-week deadline to find a European solution or risk the collapse of her governing coalition.

Over the weekend, Trump spoke for the first time with the Hungarian prime minister, Viktor Orbán, one of Merkel's key antagonists in the European Union and a vocal critic of the proposal to distribute refugee across EU member states according to a quota system. In a phone call on Saturday, Trump congratulated Orbán on his reelection in April. According to a statement by the White House, the two leaders "agreed on the need for strong national borders."
Donald Trump is using his position as the United States president to try to facilitate the collapse of Merkel's governing coalition (which just got a two-week reprieve) specifically because it remains the strongest bulwark against an ascendant coalition of nativist, white nationalist, authoritarian leaders with ties to Vladimir Putin becoming the dominant political force across Europe and North America.

Again: I wonder what will have to happen before U.S. statespeople speak the fuck up, no less start organizing to remove this nightmare from office.

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[Content Note: Nativism. Covers entire section.]

Melanie Schmitz at ThinkProgress: DHS Secretary Rolls Out Preposterous New Claim About Child Separation Policy. "Kirstjen Nielsen, secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, directly contradicted her colleagues in a multi-tweet thread Sunday evening, claiming preposterously that the Trump administration had no child separation policy for families detained at the U.S. southern border. 'This misreporting by Members, press & advocacy groups must stop. It is irresponsible and unproductive,' Nielsen wrote... 'DHS takes very seriously its duty to protect minors in our temporary custody from gangs, traffickers, criminals, and abuse. We do not have a policy of separating families at the border. Period.' On Monday morning, speaking to the National Sheriffs' Association in New Orleans, Nielsen doubled down, saying, 'We will not apologize for doing our job. We have sworn to do this job. This administration has a simple message: if you cross the border illegally, we will prosecute you.'"

Matt Shuham at TPM: Sessions Defends Family Separation Policy, Characterizes It as a Deterrent. "Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Monday defended the Trump administration's recent policy of separating migrant families apprehended at the border. ...'We cannot and will not encourage people to bring their children, or other children, to the country unlawfully by giving them immunity in the process,' he said, asserting that families claiming asylum at designated ports of entry, rather than between them, would not be separated. However, officials at those entry points have often told asylum-seekers they are 'at capacity,' leading to days of waiting. And there are some cases of families being apprehended and separated even after approaching a port of entry asserting their asylum rights."

Anne Branigin at the Root: Ex-Shelter Worker Says New Staffers Received Just One Week of Training to Work with Traumatized Migrant Children. "A former staffer who called out conditions at an Arizona migrant shelter had more to say this weekend about the poor management of centers currently housing undocumented children. Antar Davidson spoke with MSNBC's Yasmin Vossoughian on Sunday... Davidson told the cable news outlet the Estrella del Norte shelter operated less like a humanitarian organization and more like 'a private prison.' He added that the shelter had trouble hiring people with the 'necessary skills,' and speculated that the low pay may have limited the shelter's ability to recruit adequate workers. 'This is a federal level of responsibility we're talking about, and the work undertaking this increasingly difficult task are not given federal level benefits and support,' he also said. 'So, the people are just being tossed out there unprepared.'"

And, presumably, without even thorough background checks, which take time to complete. There's no telling how many people who have a history of harming children are now working in close proximity with children at the border.

[CN: Anti-semitism] Yoka Verdoner at the Guardian: Nazis Separated Me from My Parents as a Child; the Trauma Lasts a Lifetime.
The events occurring now on our border with Mexico, where children are being removed from the arms of their mothers and fathers and sent to foster families or "shelters," make me weep and gnash my teeth with sadness and rage. I know what they are going through. When we were children, my two siblings and I were also taken from our parents. And the problems we've experienced since then portend the terrible things that many of these children are bound to suffer.

My family was Jewish, living in 1942 in the Netherlands when the country was occupied by the Nazis. We children were sent into hiding, with foster families who risked arrest and death by taking us in. They protected us, they loved us, and we were extremely lucky to have survived the war and been well cared for.

Yet the lasting damage inflicted by that separation reverberates to this day, decades hence.
Have you heard the screams and seen the panic of a three-year-old when it has lost sight of its mother in a supermarket? That scream subsides when mother reappears around the end of the aisle.
This is my brother writing in recent years. He tries to deal with his lasting pain through memoir. It's been 76 years, yet he revisits the separation obsessively. He still writes about it in the present tense:
In the first home I scream for six weeks. Then I am moved to another family, and I stop screaming. I give up. Nothing around me is known to me. All those around me are strangers. I have no past. I have no future. I have no identity. I am nowhere. I am frozen in fear. It is the only emotion I possess now. As a three-year-old child, I believe that I must have made some terrible mistake to have caused my known world to disappear. I spend the rest of my life trying desperately not to make another mistake.
...In later life, I was never able to really settle down. I lived in different countries and was successful in work, but never able to form lasting relationships with partners. I never married. I almost forgot to mention my own anxiety and depression, and my many years in psychotherapy.

My grief and anger about today's southern border come not just from my personal life. As a retired psychotherapist who has worked extensively with victims of childhood trauma, I know all too well what awaits many of the thousands of children, taken by our government at the border, who are now in "processing centers" and foster homes — no matter how decent and caring those places might be. We can expect thousands of lives to be damaged, for many years or for ever, by "zero tolerance." We can expect old men and women, decades from now, still suffering, still remembering, still writing in the present tense.
Sob. I feel like I may never stop crying.

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The Supreme Court, doing its best to obliterate the shreds of our democracy that remain.

[CN: Climate change] Oliver Milman at the Guardian: Flooding from Sea Level Rise Threatens over 300,000 U.S. Coastal Homes. "Sea level rise driven by climate change is set to pose an existential crisis to many U.S. coastal communities, with new research finding that as many as 311,000 homes face being flooded every two weeks within the next 30 years. The swelling oceans are forecast repeatedly to soak coastal residences collectively worth $120bn by 2045 if greenhouse gas emissions are not severely curtailed, experts warn. This will potentially inflict a huge financial and emotional toll on the half a million Americans who live in the properties at risk of having their basements, backyards, garages, or living rooms inundated every other week. 'The impact could well be staggering,' said Kristina Dahl, a senior climate scientist at the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS)."

[CN: Climate change] Christopher Flavelle and Allison McCartney at Bloomberg: Climate Change May Already Be Hitting the Housing Market. "Between 2007 and 2017, average home prices in areas facing the lowest risk of flooding, hurricanes and wildfires have far outpaced those with the greatest risk, according to figures compiled for Bloomberg News by Attom Data Solutions, a curator of national property data. Homes in areas most exposed to flood and hurricane risk were worth less last year, on average, than a decade earlier. ...Asaf Bernstein, a professor at the University of Colorado at Boulder who has studied the drop in home prices associated with sea-level rise, said it's not surprising that home values would be affected by other types of climate risk. 'It's not a question of if,' Bernstein said. 'It's a question of when.'"

Aparajita Saxena at Reuters: Wall Street Lower as U.S.-China Trade Tensions Mount. "The Dow and the S&P 500 fell after China's retaliatory action against U.S. tariffs rekindled concerns that the world's two biggest economies were headed toward a trade war, with losses limited by gains in energy shares. ...Boeing, the single largest U.S. exporter to China, fell nearly 1 percent, while construction equipment maker Caterpillar declined 1.4 percent. Intel was the biggest drag on the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq on China tariff concerns and a downgrade by Northland Securities. A host of other chipmakers, which depend on China for a larger part of their revenues, also slipped. ...Nine of the 11 major S&P sectors were lower, led by a 1.5 percent decline in the telecommunications sector."

This whole fucking administration of indecent crooks. Goddammit. They are all so rotten.

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

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