First things first. If you’re a planner, make a plan. Read Nicholas Kristof’s smart 12-Step Program for Responding to President-Elect Trump.
If you’re not a planner and just want to get moving, one simple way to begin is to make calls. Wait, actually. Before you do, take two minutes to learn the basics of How to Make Your Congressman Listen to You and Here’s how to not waste your time pressuring lawmakers, and read the excellent shared Google doc “We’re his problem now.” Then pick up your phone. It’s important you call, not email, your legislators.
List of Senate phone numbers here; list of House phone numbers here. Don’t know your rep? Find out here. Don’t know who sits on which committees? Find out here. Have social anxiety? Read “How to call your reps when you have social anxiety!” The site/tool 5 Calls (“spend 5 minutes, make 5 calls”) even makes it super easy for you (“spend 5 minutes, make 5 calls”).
Like us on Facebook (or follow us on Twitter) and we’ll let you know whenever simple actions arise. Or subscribe to receive regular actions via email by signing up for one of the following: Flippable (“flip the House, flip the Senate, flip the President”), re:act (“delivered via email, once a week”), 2 Hours a Week (“offering you 2 hours a week of tangible action”), My Civic Workout (“emails a few times a week that have 5-minute, 10-minute, and 30-minute activism ‘workouts'”), Daily Grab Back (“implement change with five minutes of activism every day”).
There are a few great websites and apps to help you along with your activism. Check out a very cool online tool called Voice, designed to help you “turn intense emotion about the election into constructive action.” And immediately take the next 15-20 minutes to read the invaluable Indivisible Guide “for resisting the Trump agenda” written by former congressional staffers long tasked with “making Congress listen.” (Concise explanation in the NYT, here.)
See our list of activism apps. Check out Countable‘s Contact Congress, or Brigade (“the world’s first network for voters”), and others. And if you’re a coder or software architect looking to get involved, Tech for Campaigns needs you!
Know (and fight!) your fake news — and read all “news” with a critical eye. The president elect and his cronies consistently attempt to spin media coverage with accusation and innuendo. And the non-research-minded too often follow right along. (For a clear example, see this great short piece by NYU journalism professor Jay Rosen on Evidence-Based vs. Accusation-Driven Reporting.) Hold the media accountable for false equivalencies and for perpetuating utterly absurd notions like our “post-truth reality.” Call bullshit when you see it. Learn to write effective letters to the editor, and do so. If you find new sources normalizing Trumpian newspeak (like “alt-right”), and the news source has an ombudsman, contact them as well as the editor.
Change the way you live. Seek out connections you might previously have not. Read and follow this advice: How to Easily Be a White Ally to Marginalized Communites, Medium, Christopher Keelty, Nov 12, 2016. Keep an eye on each other, be aware of your surroundings, and know how to film a hate crime if you witness one.
Most importantly, build, or widen, your political network (which might or might not overlap with your social network). Seek out like-minded people. (If you drink, Drink Liberally. If you have coding skills, join others to Debug Politics.) Respond to one of the local watch parties or phone bank sessions that you get “spammed” about by national groups like MoveOn. Correspond with and meet the state senator or rep you’ve always supported and help them out occasionally. Especially if you support them, correspond with and meet your local aldermen/selectmen/councilmen, or mayor, or sheriff. All politics is local. At least it begins or ends that way.
Still unsure? Read living documents (god bless you, Google docs) like What to do this week. And then do.
Interim elections will be huge. GOTV stands for get out the vote, and there are calls to action to do so in nearly every community. Look for those emails. Respond to those emails. Get out there and pound the pavement.
If you’re going hardcore, it might be worth your while to read through some digital security tips for protesters.
You can do this. We can do this.
A Deeper Dive:
Go to Resistance School (a free four-week practical training program to sharpen the tools we need to fight back at the federal, state, and local levels)!
If you’re looking to organize, or start a local chapter of a national organization, check out The Action Network, and read through this activist toolkit from Amnesty International. Also check out the Midwest Academy (“National training institute committed to advancing the struggle for social, economic, and racial justice”) website for any upcoming trainings or workshops being offered in your area.
The Info-Activism How-To Guide is a fantastic resource, offering “strategies and tools for digital campaigning.”
And have a look at our list of activism apps.