We Resist: Day 638

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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: Trump's War on the Press Precipitously Escalates and Of Course: Conservatives Smear Khashoggi.

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

[Content Note: Hurricane damage; neglect] Robert Samuels at the Washington Post: A Week After Hurricane Michael, Rural Residents Feel Stranded.
In the week after the catastrophic Hurricane Michael, residents have watched supply trucks and federal emergency officials come through the rural town of Alford, population 400. But most of them did not stop here, where the power is still out, few have clean water and people have been sleeping outside.

There are small towns facing similar fates along Michael's destructive trail. Neighbors and churches are providing food, shelter, and supplies, trying to tide them over, hoping that more government help will come.

"We are starting to see some federal help, but it's mostly church groups and more church groups that are helping," said Mayor George Gay. "So we are going to need all the help we can get, and we welcome it."

...It was a stroke of luck that the group, International Gospel Outreach First Responders [a religious group that travels from disaster to disaster to provide support], was in Alford at all, volunteers said.

They were heading to Marianna, a larger city 15 miles away where FEMA officials are assisting residents with disaster relief claims, when local leaders told them that a smaller town was desperate for help. If the group hadn't come with hamburgers and spaghetti, residents here wondered whether they would have eventually gone hungry.
This, let us be clear, is the country that conservatives want: A country where federal tax dollars fund virtually nothing but defense, where there is no social safety net, where every person is on their own and must fend for themselves, where charity fills in the gaps (or doesn't), where you'd better eat your bootstraps if you don't want to starve after a hurricane.

This is categorically not the country I want.

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[CN: Nativism] Christopher Cadelago and Brent D. Griffiths at Politico: Trump, at Rally, Hints at Conspiracy Theories for Migrant Caravan. "Donald Trump on Thursday [during a political rally in Missoula, Montana] amped up his focus on immigration ahead of the midterm elections by claiming, without evidence, that Democrats were behind a group of Central American migrants trying to reach the U.S. ...'Now we're starting to find out — and I won't say it 100 percent, I'll put it a little tiny question mark on the end, but we're not going to get it, but we have the fake news back there, fake news — a lot of money has been passing through people to try to get to the border by Election Day, because they think that is a negative for us,' the president told the crowd. ...[Trump] added that Democrats figured 'everybody coming in' was going to vote for their candidates — though he did not mention that only legal citizens can participate in elections, and that attaining nationality and registering to vote is a process that can't be completed before Nov. 6."

Meanwhile, Republicans continue to try to undermine the integrity of the midterm elections in every way possible...

Roxana Hegeman for the AP at the Washington Post: Iconic Dodge City Moves Its Only Polling Place Outside Town. "Access to the ballot box in November will be more difficult for some people in Dodge City, where Hispanics now make up 60 percent of its population... [Dodge City] has only one polling site for its 27,000 residents. Since 2002, the lone site was at the civic center just blocks from the local country club — in the wealthy, white part of town. For this November's election, local officials have moved it outside the city limits to a facility more than a mile from the nearest bus stop... 'It is shocking that we only have one polling place, but that is only kind of scratching the surface of the problem,' said Johnny Dunlap, chairman of the Ford County Democratic Party. 'On top of that, not only is it irrational and ridiculous that we have only one polling place, but Dodge City is one of the few minority majority cities in the state.'"

Angela Caputo, Geoff Hing, and Johnny Kauffman at American Public Media: They Didn't Vote...Now They Can't. "Even by Georgia standards, the voter purge of late July 2017 was remarkable. In a single day, more than half a million people — 8 percent of Georgia's registered voters — were cut from the voter rolls. Republican Secretary of State Brian Kemp, an avid supporter of [Donald] Trump who has described himself as a 'politically incorrect conservative,' oversaw the removals eight months after he'd declared himself a candidate for governor. The purge was noteworthy for another reason: For an estimated 107,000 of those people, their removal from the voter rolls was triggered not because they moved or died or went to prison, but rather because they had decided not to vote in prior elections, according to an APM Reports analysis. Many of those previously registered voters may not even realize they've been dropped from the rolls. If they show up at the polls on Nov. 6 to vote in the heated Georgia governor's race, they won't be allowed to cast a ballot."

Mark Joseph Stern at Slate: Georgia Is Using Amateur Handwriting Analysis to Disenfranchise Minority Voters. "Say you live in Georgia. ...You fill out an absentee ballot and mail it in. Then, days or weeks after the election, you receive a notice in the mail. The signature on your absentee ballot, it explains, looked different from the signature on your voter-registration card. So an election official threw out your ballot. There is nothing you can do. Your vote has been voided. If Georgia's signature-mismatch law remains in effect through the November election, this fate will befall thousands of would-be voters. The statute directs elections officials to apply amateur handwriting analysis to voters' signatures and reject any potential 'mismatch.' Nearly 500 ballots in Gwinnett County alone have already been rejected for mismatch, a disproportionate number of them cast by minority voters."

[CN: References to violent racism and sexual assault] Kate Riga at TPM: Radio Ad Supporting Arkansas Representative Claims White Democrats 'Will Be Lynching Black Folk Again'. "In a radio ad supporting Rep. French Hill (R-AR), the narrator says that black Arkansans should vote Republican because if Democrats could accuse white Supreme Court justice Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault with 'no evidence,' white Democrats in charge would start 'lynching black folk again.' The commercial, paid for by a group called Black Americans for the President's Agenda, seems to be narrated by two black women who punctuate their talking points with 'girllll' as they trade statements. ...'I'm voting to keep Congressman French Hill and the Republicans, because we need to protect our men and boys,' one of the women says at the end of the ad. 'We can't afford to let white Democrats take us back to the bad old days of race verdicts, life sentences, and lynchings when a white girl screams 'rape.''"

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Obviously, Republicans continue to be terrible in myriad other ways, too...

Julie Hirschfeld Davis and Maggie Haberman at the New York Times: John Kelly and John Bolton Have Shouting Match over Immigration. "The White House chief of staff and the national security adviser got into a profanity-laced argument about immigration outside the Oval Office early Thursday morning, two people briefed on the altercation said, prompting the chief of staff to leave the White House complex and not return for the rest of the day. The blowup between John F. Kelly, Mr. Trump's chief of staff, and John R. Bolton, his national security adviser, was loud enough to be overheard by several officials in the West Wing. ...A third person described the episode as little more than a typical airing of differences between Mr. Bolton and Mr. Kelly, who has a temper."

Oh, the great moderating influence has a temper that he can't control? Cool.

[CN: Rape culture] Andrew Kaczynski and Jamie Ehrlich at CNN: GOP Rep. Jason Lewis Once Mocked Women Who Felt Traumatized by Unwanted Touching. "The Minnesota congressman made his comment during a November 2012 broadcast of 'The Jason Lewis Show,' a syndicated radio program that aired from 2009 until 2014 before he was elected to the House in 2016. Lewis was discussing sexual harassment allegations leveled against then-Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain from his time as president of the National Restaurant Association. ...'I don't want to be callous here, but how traumatizing was it?' Lewis said. 'How many women at some point in their life have a man come on to them, place their hand on their shoulder or maybe even their thigh, kiss them, and they would rather not have it happen, but is that really something that's going to be seared in your memory that you'll need therapy for? You'll never get over? It was the most traumatizing experience? Come on! She wasn't raped,' Lewis added, using a voice mocking an emotionally distraught woman."

[CN: Racism]

Andy Towle at Towleroad: Trump Considering Homocon Richard Grenell as UN Ambassador. "Donald Trump is considering Richard Grenell, the gay U.S. ambassador to Germany to replace Nikki Haley as UN Ambassador. Grenell's role in Germany caused controversy after he breached protocol and gave an interview to Breitbart saying he wanted to 'empower other conservatives throughout Europe.' ...Grenell has plenty of other controversy in his past, as the Washington Blade noted: 'Grenell waited nearly eight months for confirmation in the Senate. Grenell faced opposition over mean tweets about the appearance of women, including Hillary Clinton, Rachel Maddow, and Callista Gingrich, and tweets downplaying the impact of Russia meddling in the 2016 election.'" No wonder Trump loves him.

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Art Cullen at the Guardian: Politicians Say Nothing, But U.S. Farmers Are Increasingly Terrified by Climate Change. "Farmers around here are itching to go after that amber wave of soya beans, but there was that 5in rain a couple of weeks ago and then a 7in rain, and it drives even the retired guys batty. Those beans aren't worth much at the elevator thanks to a Trump trade war with China, but they're worth even less getting wet feet in a pond that was a field which the glacier made a prairie bog some 14,000 years ago — until we came along and drained it. This year, crops in northwest Iowa are looking spotty. Up into Minnesota they were battered by spring storms and late planting, and then inundated again in late summer. Where they aren't washed out, they're weedy or punky. If you go south in Buena Vista county, where I live in Storm Lake, the corn stands tall and firm. Welcome to climate change, Iowa-style."

[CN: Nativism; child abuse] Rebekah Entralgo at ThinkProgress: Report: Latest Trump Administration Immigration Rule Could Cost up to $12.9 Billion. "Withdrawing from Flores, according to DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, is necessary to end one of the 'primary pull factors for illegal immigration' — an argument which immigration experts say is deeply flawed. The new rule would allow Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials to house families in unsafe detention facilities while their asylum petitions play out in court, which could take months or even years. In addition to extending the length of time an immigrant child is forced to spend in detention, ending Flores would come with a hefty price tag. According to a new report from the Center for American Progress (ThinkProgress is an editorially independent newsroom housed at CAP), the proposed rule would cost at least $2 billion and as much as $12.9 billion over the course of a decade — up to $1.3 billion per year."

[CN: Trans hatred] Bob Salsberg at the AP: Transgender Rights Lie in the Hands of a State's Electorate. "Setting the stage for the first-ever statewide referendum in the U.S. on a transgender rights law, opponents collected enough signatures to place a repeal question on the Nov. 6 ballot. Transgender rights supporters worry — and opponents of the laws hope — that if the repeal passes in Massachusetts, the first state to legalize gay marriage and among the most LGBT-friendly, it could unleash a cascade of similar efforts elsewhere. 'For this to happen in Massachusetts, where we have this reputation of being an inclusive state dedicated for equality and dignity for all people, to see what happens on this (question) is really going to be an important moment for transgender rights nationally,' said Mason Dunn, executive director of the Massachusetts Trans Political Coalition."

[CN: Misogyny] Sophie Novack at the Texas Observer: Without Planned Parenthood, Almost Half the Providers in Texas' Women's Health Program Saw No Patients.
For years, the Texas health agency has claimed that its Healthy Texas Women program is thriving. After Planned Parenthood was booted out in 2013, state officials cobbled together a new network of women's health providers, which they say is robust and growing.

But records obtained by the Observer show that Texas has failed to fill the gap left by Planned Parenthood and other established family planning providers, leaving many women with inadequate access to contraception and preventive screenings.

Almost half of the approximately 5,400 providers in Healthy Texas Women didn't see a single patient in the program in fiscal year 2017, according to data from the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC). Of the 2,900 providers that did see patients, more than 700 saw just a single person. Only about 1,500 saw more than five patients. Of the 27 providers that served 1,000 or more, 11 were labs, which don't actually see patients and advocates say skew the data.

Erika Ramirez, a policy and advocacy director at the Texas Women's Healthcare Coalition who previously worked at HHSC as a senior policy advisor, called the fact that most providers aren't seeing many clients "alarming."

"More providers is good, but it's not enough," she said. "You need to make sure those providers are actually meeting the demand, actually providing those services. Because if they're not, then it's just a number, and women are still not getting the services they need."
And finally...

*jumps into Christmas tree*

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

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