Our mission at Resistance Times is to help curate the emerging resistance not only in its oppositional sense, but also in its constructive sense. One of our mottos is, “Opposing injustice and building tolerance…” This conveys the dual spirit of resistance as a set of actions and strategies to halt oppression in all forms, and likewise as the unleashing of creative capacities of organizing and mobilizing that point toward a better world in the making. The central aim isn’t simply to “bounce back” in response to a crisis, but rather to “bounce forward” with an emergent resilience and renewed purpose. This form of resistance is ongoing, participatory, collaborative, and always at hand.
To bring this into focus, and to continue the resistance well after the crisis of the moment passes, we suggest: #ThePersistence. This is the place to locate those stories and actions that uplift, energize, inspire, and motivate. It shows the dynamic and visionary side of #TheResistance beyond the diligent engagement it has shown with the current Administration and its draconian, treacherous policies. We’ll be collecting articles and artifacts to highlight this positive sense of our work — which brings a message of collective insistence for a more just and sustainable world. To help galvanize this, we offer some points of reflection for the persistence of resistance.
PREAMBLE TO PERSISTENCE
We seek not merely a return to what was, but movement toward what can be. Even before the Trump debacle, many people were suffering profound injustices, and the environment was in great peril. The aim isn’t to go back to the pre-Trump status quo, but to recognize this as a profound moment for moving forward with our eyes wide open.
The concept of “resistance” is limited by linguistics in much the same way that “nonviolence” is — namely as a reaction to, and rejection of, something. But as we know with nonviolence, and now with resistance, there is much more on the proactive side, representing a search for meaning, a way of life, and a new vision for a better world.
Every action or intervention that highlights a problem or crisis also calls upon us to articulate an alternative. In this light, agitating for impeachment is about reinvigorating participatory democracy; exposing corruption is about advocating for transparency and accountability in politics. Wherever it’s gone wrong is a chance to get it right.
As we struggle in resistance together, let’s recall the common bonds and interests that brought us to this place. There will be many factors pushing our coalition to fragment, to subvert our solidarity and undermine our effectiveness in the process. We can resist this “divide and conquer” tactic, whether it’s born of strife or success.
We will continue the struggle as long as injustice exists, people are oppressed, and environments are degraded. This obviously means that we will remain engaged with the critical issues in our communities (and everywhere) for the foreseeable future, working to leave the world better off than we found it. In this effort, we will persist…
ARTICLES AND ARTIFACTS
Nonviolent Resistance: Creative, Powerful, Growing (2/15/17): “What we, the People, are doing to resist injustice, oppression, discrimination, hate, bigotry and authoritarianism is downright inspiring. Nonviolent action is reaching new heights of creativity in the United States, widening in frequency and participation. Here’s just a sample of how ordinary, extraordinary people have mobilized for justice….”
Weaving the Threads of Resistance (2/16/17): “We can work together and seize this chance to restore what worked, reject what didn’t, and reimagine what can be. We owe it to ourselves, those who have struggled before, and those who will inhabit the future, not to be primarily reactive and willing to settle for only cosmetic changes. Someday, hopefully, we will look back and remember this as the very moment that we wove the threads of a better world.”
What Is the Resistance? (3/3/17): “What is now called resisting is often Americans simply helping others: a concept so alien to the Trump administration that it is labelled as subversive. Lawyers volunteer to aid unjustly detained immigrants; clergy hold interfaith rallies when one religion is attacked; citizens look out for their neighbors and lobby officials on their behalf.”
A Harmonious Resistance (3/6/17): “The #NoDAPL movement has climbed many mountains in order to inspire and awaken millions of people towards fighting for what is right. A wave of renewal and awakening is spreading, creating space for the teachers, musicians, writers, artists and activists to rise and make a difference.”
This Is the Resistance (3/10/17): “The new grassroots resistance groups that have sprung up since the election [reflect] the exciting shape feminist activism has taken over the last few years … ‘fearless,’ ‘unapologetic’ and ‘gorgeously transformative.'”
Preparing for the Long Haul (3/14/17): “I need to figure out how to stay human, stay upright…. I need to be thinking about the long haul, about a life and a lifestyle of resistance, as opposed to a posture of resistance.”
Protest and Persist (3/15/17): “I have been moved and thrilled and amazed by the strength, breadth, depth and generosity of the resistance to the Trump administration and its agenda. I did not anticipate anything so bold, so pervasive … like the 6,000 chapters of Indivisible reportedly formed since the election, new and fortified immigrant-rights groups, religious groups, one of the biggest demonstrations in American history with the Women’s March….”
Normalize the Resistance (3/15/17): “This is #NotNormal! It’s important to keep remembering that, since as time passes even the abnormal can become normalized, and because as resilient beings we have a great capacity to adapt to even extreme conditions. Nonetheless … always remember that #ShePersisted — and so will we!”
Spring Forward (3/22/17): “Trump may be a dangerous and unqualified person to hold the presidency, but the problems in our system predate and transcend him alone. Ironically, his appearance has awakened a resurgent movement across a wide swath of the populace. May our winter of discontent yield a spring of democracy — not merely restored, but reborn.”
An ‘Extraordinary and Powerful’ Resistance (3/29/17): “So we have enormous transformative work to do. And people are actually doing it. If we keep at it, if we’re smart, if we’re skillful, if we’re more passionate about solidarity than the kind of perfectionism of nitpicking small differences, I think that extraordinary things could happen….”
Resistance is NOT Futile (3/29/17): “Once upon a time, in a galaxy far far away, a ragtag bunch of charismatic castoffs and merry malcontents staged a rebellion against the dark forces of evil in their midst…. Ultimately, they prevailed through sheer fortitude, gifted insight, actionable intel, mystical wisdom, humor, and a dash of the good fortune that often favors the bold.”