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What we’re reading on the election

Photo: / AFSC

In the wake of the election of Donald Trump, communities across the country and the globe are grappling with what happened and where we go from here. Below is a small sampling of what we’re reading to ground ourselves in the long history of movements for justice that have come before us and the many struggles that lie ahead.


White Won, by Jamelle Bouie, via Slate

“Fifty years after the Black freedom movement forced the United States to honor its ideals, at least on paper, it’s clear this was premature. Like clockwork, white Americans embraced a man who promised a kind of supremacy. We haven’t left our long cycle of progress and backlash. We are still the country that produced George Wallace. We are still the country that killed Emmett Till.”


Democrats, Trump, and the ongoing, dangerous refusal to learn the lesson of Brexit, by Glenn Greenwald via The Intercept

“For many years, the U.S.—like the U.K. and other Western nations—has embarked on a course that virtually guaranteed a collapse of elite authority and internal implosion. From the invasion of Iraq to the 2008 financial crisis to the all-consuming framework of prisons and endless wars, societal benefits have been directed almost exclusively to the very elite institutions most responsible for failure at the expense of everyone else.”


Across the country, crowds march in protest against Trump's victory, by Camila Domonoske and Martha Ann Overland via NPR

“Protesters took to the streets in cities across the United States, angered by the surprise election of Donald Trump. Demonstrations began shortly after President-elect Trump claimed victory in the early hours of Wednesday. On Wednesday night and into Thursday morning, they spread to several major cities.”


How detained immigrants joined last night’s anti-Trump protest from behind bars, by Jorge Rivas via Fusion

“An electric charge went through the crowd as protesters realized what was happening: Dozens of detained immigrants were showing their support for the anti-Trump march by flicking flashlights and reading lights on and off inside their cells. It provided a surreal light show for the street protest, which came to an unscheduled stop outside the building to cheer the unseen inmates locked inside.”


The secret racist history of the Electoral College, by Andrew Joyce via Fusion

“Many history books will tell you that the Electoral College was devised by the founders because they feared that the electorate was too ill-informed to make the decision themselves. But there’s plenty of evidence to show that protecting the institution of slavery—and not a fear of low-information voters—motivated the decision.”


Autocracy: Rules for survival, by Masha Gessen via The New York Review of Books

“I have lived in autocracies most of my life, and have spent much of my career writing about Vladimir Putin’s Russia. I have learned a few rules for surviving in an autocracy and salvaging your sanity and self-respect. It might be worth considering them now.”


An open letter to Our Nation from 100 women of color leaders, via Our100

 “As women of color, as leaders, we will build and lead us on a path forward. We must work together to hold civic, administrative and corporate decision makers accountable. To reach our full potential as people, and as a nation, this democracy must be owned by all of us, for all of us. We pledge our unity and determination to be ready, determined and united behind a vision and plan of action to become a nation where we can all live with dignity, care for our loved ones and the land, and thrive in freedom from all forms of inequality.”


"What We’re Reading" is a weekly feature on AFSC's News and Commentary blog, where we share a curated collection of recent articles on timely issues. "What We're Reading" is meant to spark discussion, debate, and knowledge sharing, and the articles we highlight do not necessarily reflect the official organizational positions of AFSC. We encourage you to tell us what you're reading on these issues in the comments below.


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