Is the Resistance Over?
Now that we are handing the keys to the country over to Joe Biden, are we to assume everything will go well from here and our new president will take care of things?
Most of us have been united on all fronts, with laser focus, on the task of electing Joe Biden and Kamala Harris. And it’s been quite the ride. From “doom scrolling” on Twitter, to wondering what societal norm will be destroyed, which institution will be attacked and what laws will be broken next. But it will all be over soon. In just 44 days, after four long years, Donald Trump will no longer be president. It didn't take long after Trump was elected in 2016 for “the resistance” to come to fruition. Like resistance movements before ours, it was born out of a need for justice and survival. Ours wasn’t exactly like other historical resistance movements, but they all follow similar paths against authoritarian threats to democracy. “To live in the Trump era was to be amped up all the time, on high alert, on constant war footing, in fight-or-flight mode, ready to roll,” said The.Ink Founder Anand Giridharadas. “When he leaves the scene, politics will hardly fade away. Nor can we afford for it to. But for many it will go back to being more like homework than an addictive horror movie: something you have to dedicate yourself to because it’s important, as opposed to something from which you cannot pry your eyes away.” For the moment, we are now focused on Trump's concession and the Georgia Senate races. That won’t last past January. And let’s face it. It will be tempting to breathe a sigh of relief once Biden is inaugurated and then go on with our lives. But we shouldn’t. After Jan. 20, the resistance must evolve. There will be no more Trump administration to resist against, but that spirit must live on. All those enabling Republican senators and sycophantic representatives haven't gone anywhere. We must carry on our fight against them. What we learned over the past few years is our complacency, our sense of entitlement and our false belief in American exceptionalism brought us to this point. The question remains. What were the circumstances that made Trump possible? What will we do about socio-economic inequality, violence towards Black Americans, xenophobia, weaponized white resentment toward changing demographics, climate change and issues of gender inequality?
None of that will suddenly be solved once Joe Biden is president. We still have to contend with the 74 million people who voted for Trump and believe his conspiracy theories. We still have Fox News and other right-wing media outlets that will continue to erode democratic norms.
The Biden administration and its future battles with the Senate will present us with plenty of reasons to fight for what's right. However, it won’t consume us. It won’t occupy our every waking thought.
We now have an opening and have been presented with a golden opportunity.
We have the chance to redirect our focus into tackling these and other issues with an administration that is willing to listen. With this opportunity, we have the option to make true change in American politics.
What type of America do we want?
We want what we were promised. Equality, fairness and the prospects for a better life. America isn’t the greatest in country on Earth, but it can be one of them. This is it, right now, our moment.
Let’s make it count.