Last week I wrote about being hopeful for your country. And after another weekend filled with protests, I have become less optimistic about our current administration, but my optimism for us, as a country, remains. I was once again inspired by the swift actions of so many to come together against harsh and repressive restrictions on immigrants and refugees that our president enacted.
Un-American to its core, the ban was quickly met with opposition from everyday citizens, celebrities, political and religious leaders alike. For me, seeing all of the action this weekend served as yet another reminder that this president will make America great again, just perhaps not in the way he had hoped.
He has awakened this country in a way that I don’t think I have seen before. He has stirred up the activist in so many. And we have made it clear that we will not allow our country’s core values to be trampled upon, and we will not stand to see other treated so unjustly. And this, my friends, is where my hope stems from.
Whether or not you were able to participate in protests, here are just a few things your inner activist can do to continue this fight well beyond last weekend.
- Donate to causes supporting legal challenges to the administration’s executive order. The ACLU was one of the first to file suit. Their request for a temporary injunction to block the deportation of all people stranded in U.S. airports was granted, but the fight is likely to continue into the foreseeable future. The National Immigration Law Center and the International Refugee Assistance Project, among others have also joined the cause.
- Help support the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR). Similar to the organizations above, CAIR has filed suit against the ban, but donating to the organization can also help them fulfill other objectives of their mission to “enhance understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.” Think we could all use some of that.
- Call your lawmakers. While many senators and representatives have spoken out against the ban, it’s always good to reach out and let them know where you stand. Keep putting pressure on them so they can continue to put pressure on the administration.
- Protest (you knew it was coming). Get out there and make your voice heard. Think Progress has been keeping a running list of protests and events to help you find out if anything is happening near you. While a lot of protests happened over the weekend, they are likely to continue. I recommend clicking through on your location to find the most up-to-date information.
- Keep the dialogue going. Go ahead and share on social media. But, even more importantly, talk with your friends and family in person. Listen to the other side before giving your piece. If you can’t listen to what they’re saying, you can’t expect them to listen to you. If you hear their arguments, you also have a better shot at giving them information that appeals to them and maybe even being able to sway their opinion.
We are diverse but we are one country, and we are definitely stronger together. Let’s prove it.