On December 17, the highest-standing figures in the incoming Trump administration were put on trial on the streets of downtown Los Angeles. The jury comprised of working class and oppressed communities already negatively affected by the violence this incoming administration has provoked. As a consequence—and probably unsurprisingly—the People found the entire incoming cabinet and appointees “unfit to hold office” for their violently misogynist, racist, anti-immigrant and anti-LGBTQ policies.
“This most recent election has shown the two-party system couldn’t be less representative of the people,” said Eman Khaleq, organizer and member of the Party for Socialism and Liberation. “The Democratic Party has shown it can’t ‘save us.’ The Democrats denied us a popular candidate [Bernie Sanders] and now tells us ‘get out of the streets’ and ‘give Trump a chance,’ but the People say, NO!”
Saturday’s People’s Trial was part of a several miles long march organized by the Party for Socialism and Liberation, the ANSWER Coalition, Union del Barrio, KMB-Pro Peoples Youth and many other organizations and activists.
The trial took the form of a rally beginning at El Pueblo Historical Monument, the oldest public space in Los Angeles County, and then a march where charges were read aloud against Trump appointees each time as the march stopped at politically-significant sites, such as the Los Angeles Police Department Headquarters and the ICE detention Center.
According to Common Dreams and the Washington Post, the combined wealth of Trump’s incoming “billionaire” administration is ten times that of the entire George W. Bush administration. Their wealth exceeds that of any previous President’s, making them, literally, “THE 1%-ers”! This means, politically, they are only interested in maintaining and increasing their own, personal, individual wealth while simultaneously doing nothing –or even significantly increasing– the suffering of working class and oppressed people both inside and outside the U.S.
Here are only some of those completely unfit to represent working class and oppressed communities under a “Billionaire Trump” administration, and why:
– Betsy Devos, Secretary of Education; works to de-fund public education converting it instead to “for-profit” companies, available to only the rich; personally spends millions funding anti-trans “bathroom bills” and anti-LGBTQ political organizations.
– Andrew Puzder, Secretary of Labor, opposes laws protecting workers against workplace injury and discrimination; doesn’t believe workers should be paid a living wage; opposes increasing the minimum wage and in fact believes workers should be paid less.
– Jeff Sessions, Attorney General; previously deemed “too racist” by the U.S. government to serve as a federal judge;
– Mike Flynn, National Security Adviser; oversaw the torture by US military of prisoners held in US-controlled Abu Ghraib prisons; He’s known for both his anti-Semitism and near-fanatical Islamophobia.
– Steve Bannon, Chief Political Adviser; was the “voice” of white supremacy while serving as editor at the “Alt-Right’s” Breitbart news; ran Trump’s racist, misogynist, anti-LGBTQ, anti-immigrant Presidential campaign; was in fact the “voice” of Trump’s campaign, contributing planks to the platform including: “Build the Wall,” anti-Muslim/anti-Arab racism, anti-Latino racism while defending Trump’s sexism and sexual assaults.
“We’re putting this criminal, billionaire administration on trial”, said Mike Wang, ANSWER organizer and PSL member, “to say Trump is not our president, this administration does not represent us and we will keep marching to build a movement which does! Our rights were won by marching in the streets and the only way to keep our rights is to keep organizing, uniting and staying in the streets together!”
As Jim Lafferty, longtime leader of the Los Angeles National Lawyers Guild summarized, “The majority of the people are with us! History’s shown us by coming together, in the streets we’ve stopped imperialist wars in the past, it’s how we’ve won labor rights and LGBTQ rights; and it’s how we’ll win $15 an hour minimum wage, defend immigrant rights and beat back Trump’s billionaire agenda. Power to the people!”