As a kid, I lived through multiple military coups. All told, over a decade of my childhood in Bolivia was spent under dictatorship / military rule. It was often frightening, as a child, to be surrounded by a relatively constant hum of gun-toting soldiers, surveillance, armored tanks, and state violence.
In last week’s vice presidential debate between Sen. Kamala Harris and Vice President Mike Pence, Harris reiterated Democratic nominee Joe Biden’s rejection of a fracking ban, despite her earlier call for one when she was a presidential candidate (CBS News, 10/7/20):
“I will repeat, and the American people know, that Joe Biden will not ban fracking. That is a fact,” Harris said.
Donald Trump, desperately behind in the polls, appears to be laying the groundwork for illegally attempting to remain in office if he loses the election. A previous commentary, “Social Self-Defense Against the Impending Trump Coup” laid out a strategy for popular resistance to such a usurpation of democratic government. This commentary focuses in on the role of workers – union and nonunion – in resisting a Trump Coup.
We need to build a strike-capable mass movement that unites diverse groups behind powerful demands for system change. This is the only way to reverse course on climate destruction and intertwined crises. There is no time to waste.
This means we need to:
Devote time, energy and money to building that movement, and
Think through how our actions shape people’s understandings and their willingness to join such a movement.
On both these fronts, urging people to vote for Joe Biden and the Democrats undermines the work we need to be doing.