Defending the "Protest Nation"

Defending the "Protest Nation"

Today's New York Times coined the phrase "protest nation" to describe the massive flood of people hitting the streets in immediate and courageous opposition to Donald Trump and Steven Bannons' authoritarian, white supremacist and misogynist plans for the United States. The people in protest have become such a political force that President Trump has been forced to cancel his scheduled visit to a Harley-Davidson factory in Milwaukee because of planned protests against him. There, Trump was set to sign more executive orders. And he is afraid to do so because of the visibility and strength of the people mobilizing in protest and engaging in dissent.

At this pivotal moment in history where the fundamentals are in jeopardy, and authoritarian governance is closer than ever, the power to resist rests in your hands, the hands of the people, who take to the streets, the parks and stand upon the public spaces to manifest dissent and support a different view of the future.

The Partnership for Civil Justice Fund is in the courtroom and in the streets protecting the ability of the people of the United States to be the political force that throws a wrench into outrageous efforts to eviscerate fundamental rights.

I am writing you now with an urgent appeal for support.

In the immediate aftermath of the election, the PCJF did not pause but was in court within days fighting for the right to protest on Day One of the Trump administration -- over government obstruction. We wanted to be sure that from the first moment he took office Donald Trump would be confronted with the voices of the people. We have seen the import of fighting for those rights - in the first ten days in office Donald Trump has had to witness millions of people standing up in swift and unwavering opposition to his plans.

We need your support right now to do this work. The need is critical. The time is now.

Right now we are fighting to keep the streets and sidewalks open and defending against new efforts, even in just this past week, to roll back and restrict hard-won First Amendment freedoms. Our work over two decades has created landmark laws and policies protecting the right to protest and restricting police repression but we must defend those advances and expand those rights. At this very moment, legislatures around the country are considering unconstitutional and outrageous legislation that would criminalize basic First Amendment activities and police have taken repressive action against lawful demonstrators. Join in this urgent fight back.

The requests for assistance that the PCJF is receiving are growing daily and our ability to fight these challenges can only be limited by resources. We need your help to meet the needs that are growing every day.

Your tax deductible donation is crucial to stopping efforts to push people out of the streets and to criminalize dissent. You can donate online or by sending a check to the PCJF, 617 Florida Avenue NW, Washington, D.C. 20001.

I want to thank you for everything you are doing to fight for justice right now. Would you please also take a moment share this message and ask your family, friends and networks to also give generously to the PCJF with your personal explanation about why defending our First Amendment freedoms is so important to you?

You can see the impact of collective action, the power of people coming together. We must ensure that this can and will continue day after day and work together to fight for our future and our children's futures.

Thank you for all that you do,

Mara Verheyden-Hilliard
Executive Director