Our eyes have been opened

Many of us have spent the week learning the subtleties of the white supremacy present here in our country. I myself learned that the bulk of  confederate statues were erected not right after the civil war to “preserve history,” but at times when Southern whites were engaged in vicious campaigns of dominance against blacks. The statues symbolize this white terror against blacks. I learned that at least some KKK leaders believe their organization is a “Christian group.” As the President of UT Austin said as he took down four confederate statues this week: Our eyes have been opened.

On a happy note, we hand-delivered the cards many of us got to sign thanking our Members of Congress for their tireless work to save our healthcare. Our MoCs were touched to get such a personal outpouring of appreciation. Congresswoman Pelosi spent several minutes with us, and had her staff take this photo.

Now let me turn to this weekend’s events. As you know, a right-wing group called Patriot Prayer is holding a “Freedom Rally” at Crissy Field on Saturday. The permit has been granted. Here are some things you should know:

  • The Southern Poverty Law Center says this group holds rallies to provoke violence.
  • The Anti-Defamation League says far-right groups target liberal cities for their events because they expect, and want, a confrontational response. Footage of their members being physically assaulted makes for great propaganda videos, and great recruitment. And, when their events gain strong media coverage, they tend to return.
  • The group has hired the Oath Keepers to “protect” them. Believe me, these are not folks you want to have over for dinner.
  • Sports Basement has announced it will close that day to protect employees and customers. Some other businesses in the Presidio will also be closed.
  • The permit conditions for the Patriot Prayer event prohibit weapons of any kind.
  • The Crissy Field location is under the jurisdiction of federal law. All event attendees are subject to federal law.
  • Advice excerpted from Southern Poverty Law Center’s Ten Ways to Fight Hate:

Do not attend a hate rally. As much as you might like to physically show your opposition to hate, confrontations serve only the perpetrators. Many communities facing a hate group rally have held alternative events at the same hour, some distance away, emphasizing strength in community and diversity.

We’ve been rounding up all the  peaceful rallies that are away from Crissy Field on our blog. There are many to choose from. (I will be at the Ocean Beach event, making a huge human heart banner that will be photographed from a helicopter overhead!)

If you decide to go to one of the events at Crissy Field, it might be good to review this Amnesty International 1-pager, Safety During Protests, as well as the National Park Service page of rules for the event.

Stand Up SF actions:

  • Seb Gorka, one of Trump’s top aides, is believed to be a member of a Hungarian Nazi organization. For five  months, three Senators have been asking whether Gorka is under investigation for falsifying his U.S. naturalization application by failing to disclose his membership in a neo-Nazi organization. Call all 3 Members of Congress and tell them enough is enough, we need answers on Gorka or we need him to leave.
  • Trump has nominated Sam Clovis to serve as the chief scientist for the US Department of Agriculture. But Clovis is a climate denier, not a scientist, and he has a well-documented history of racism and bigotry. The vote is likely to take place when the Senate gets back in session. Call Senators Feinstein and Harris and tell them: Vote NO on a climate-denier for a key science position.
  • Deadline Aug 30: The FCC has extended its deadline for public comments on net neutrality. Net neutrality is what stops internet service providers from controlling what we see and how fast we see it. It is critical for resistance efforts like ours. We’ve made it easy for you to submit a comment! Just go to this page. Even if you’ve submitted a comment in the past, you can submit another one. Please do! We need all voices.

Actions with other groups: