While I loved the “I’d call Trump a cunt, but he lacks the depth and warmth” poster at this past weekend’s Women’s March on Washington, and the one the girl was holding that said “Have your wall, but our generation will tear it down,” I think this one (seen above) was my favorite… And, hopefully, if all goes according to plan, we’ll see it again in a few months, as scientists descend on D.C. for the Scientists’ March on Washington, which was just announced in response to Trump’s recent moves to slash federal research funding and restrict scientists from communicating their findings with the public. [No date has been set, but we’re assured that it’ll happen.]
Although it just went live a little while ago, the Facebook page for the proposed march already has over 76,000 likes, and there appears to be a great deal of momentum, with local march committees already being established around the country. I suspect it would have happened anyway, as Trump’s blatant disregard for facts can’t sit well with the scientific community, but it certainly didn’t help that, since Monday, his administration has begun freezing research funding and blocking scientists from disclosing their discoveries, especially as they relate to climate change and the environment. I hate, of course, the fact that this is happening, but I absolutely love seeing people beginning to rise up in large numbers to confront what’s happening. I don’t think I’ve ever felt more patriotic than yesterday, when National Park employees across the nation began rising up online in response to the threat of a federal gag order, and it’s just building today, as stories are beginning to spread across the internet of scientists organizing and pushing back.
Yes, this should have happened years ago in response to the anti-science policies and talking points of the Republican party, but I’m happy to see that it’s happening at all. And I imagine it’s not just women, park rangers and scientists that will join the fight. As more policies are enacted by the Trump administration, and more people realize just how much their lives will be impacted, more will join the resistance. No, this is just the beginning.
The Republicans, for what it’s worth, are also fighting back. Today they put their main “science” guy, House Committee on Science, Space and Technology chairman Lamar Smith of Texas, in front of the American people to tell them that that they should stop listening to disgruntled scientists, park rangers and the press, and get their news instead from President Trump. After saying that our new President has “tremendous energy” and “the stamina of a bull elephant, like Teddy Roosevelt,” the Congressman said we should just tune everything else out and listen to Trump. “In fact, it might be the only way to get the unvarnished truth,” he said. [Yes, that was the chairman of our House Committee on Science, Space and Technology… the some committee, by the way, that made headlines back in December, when, on their official Twitter page, they shared a fake Breitbart news story about the non-existence of climate change.]
As for what went on within the National Park Service yesterday, here’s a clip from the New York Times.
The Trump administration has ordered a freeze on federal grant spending at several government agencies, from the Environmental Protection Agency to the Department of Health and Human Services, followed by memos telling employees not to send out news releases or to create social media posts, blog entries or official website content, and to consult with senior officials before speaking to the news media.
Such memos landed this week at the E.P.A., Health and Human Services, the Department of the Interior and Department of Agriculture in a broad halt to external communications while the Trump administration struggles to put political appointees into position. Small flare-ups of communications — apparently in dissent — appeared on Twitter, but they were quickly stopped.
The Twitter posts of the social media division of the Badlands National Park broadcasting the threat of climate change became something of a cause célèbre on the left before they disappeared from the platform on Tuesday…
After the Badlands Twitter posts were taken down, employees at the Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural Site, a national historic site, ended Tuesday evening by quoting the first President Roosevelt on free speech…
Rebellious posts on social media became so plentiful from so many obscure sites that the management of the Interior Department appeared powerless to find them all…
And it’s only gotten better since then, as National Park employees, after having been shot down by the Interior Department, went rogue and started their own private account, @AltNatParkSer, which is now being followed by 1.2 million people. Here are some examples.
And, now, there’s also a rogue NASA account, @roguenasa.
This, my friends, is what the beginning of a revolution looks like in the 21st century.