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Saturday, February 4, 2017

Words in the Age of Trump | The Nation

Leslie Savan writes in The Nation Magazine:
"It’s a given that politicians distort language. But—as writers from Masha Gessen to Roger Cohen suggest—by stripping words of meaning, Trump attempts to claim power over reality itself and take the necessary steps toward authoritarian rule.
"The following is a glossary of terms that will no doubt grow in tandem with the president’s fits and fixations, and the world’s response to them. First is Trumpspeak, the language that he and his wordsmiths have introduced or popularized, much of it since the inauguration. Next are the words of resistance, used to grasp and combat Trumpism, some working out better than others. Contributing to this second set of terms are voters, activists, progressive media, and, this time around, mainstream media, which the Trumpists have been trying discredit as 'fake news' and 'the opposition party.'"

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Leaked Draft of Trump’s Religious Freedom Order Reveals Sweeping Plans to Legalize Discrimination | The Nation

Sarah Posner writes in The Nation Magazine:
"The draft order seeks to create wholesale exemptions for people and organizations who claim religious or moral objections to same-sex marriage, premarital sex, abortion, and trans identity, and it seeks to curtail women’s access to contraception and abortion through the Affordable Care Act. The White House did not respond to requests for comment, but when asked Monday about whether a religious freedom executive order was in the works, White House spokesman Sean Spicer told reporters, 'I’m not getting ahead of the executive orders that we may or may not issue. There is a lot of executive orders, a lot of things that the president has talked about and will continue to fulfill, but we have nothing on that front now.'
"Language in the draft document specifically protects the tax-exempt status of any organization that 'believes, speaks, or acts (or declines to act) in accordance with the belief that marriage is or should be recognized as the union of one man and one woman, sexual relations are properly reserved for such a marriage, male and female and their equivalents refer to an individual’s immutable biological sex as objectively determined by anatomy, physiology, or genetics at or before birth, and that human life begins at conception and merits protection at all stages of life.'"

Protests Are Putting Trump on Notice: You’re in for a Fight | The Nation

Mark Hertsgaard writes in The Nation:

"Trump, Bannon, and the rest are proving to be as hateful and dangerous as suspected, but the grassroots backlash they’ve provoked could be their undoing. Shrewd rulers never like to see large numbers of people turning out in the streets against them, and for good reason. It creates all kinds of problems; if continued, it can even help bring them down. Just ask Richard Nixon, or the old communist bosses of Eastern Europe, or tyrants throughout history. In Trump’s case, the massive, self-confident resistance now unfolding is precisely the kind of thing that gets under his notoriously thin skin. It’s also the kind of thing that, if sustained, can push a rookie president into making mistakes—overreaching, getting distracted, and alienating allies or the undecided."
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