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Anti-Trump activists: Democratic Party is part of the problem

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by Joseph Earnest February 21, 2017


Newscast Media WASHINGTON, D.C.President Donald Trump’s victory and early actions have sparked a backlash with millions of Americans protesting against him across the US. If the anti-Trump coalition is successful, it has little to do with the Democratic Party.  

The opposition against President Donald Trump which manifested itself during the Women's March, in airport protests against his travel ban or on the Day Without Immigrants action is poised to have a sustainable impact on the American political landscape - even if it may not be apparent right away.

One of the lessons of the history of social movements is that they take time to develop and that what is publicly visible often does not tell the full story, said Donatella della Porta, a scholar of international social movements at the European University Institute in Florence.

While the anti-Trump coalition is already successful in its own right, noted della Porta, to have a lasting impact it could take a page out of the playbook of earlier social movements regardless whether they lean right like the Tea Party movement or left like the Occupy movement.

From the Tea Party movement, the anti-Trump coalition could copy the sentiment that a decentralized organizational structure is to be preferred over a top-down approach; from the Occupy Movement, that language and values matter.      

"If Sanders could say 'I am socialist' it is also because a movement like Occupy, which has changed the language of politics," said della Porta. 

Asked about the role of the Democratic Party in the anti-Trump movement, della Porta, who currently researches populism on the left, is blunt: "At the moment, the Democratic Party is part of the problem. They can see to which extent they can follow the movement, but at the moment they are perceived by many activists as being more part of the problem than as a potential solution."

And this phenomenon - a deep distrust and disappointment among millennials with center-left political parties who are being perceived as not having fulfilled their promises - is not limited to the United States, but also present in Europe.

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Source: Deutsche Welle













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