Practical steps to defend freedom against Trump

Before getting back to theoretical aspects of a liberal coalition, I’d like to talk about practical action to counter what Trump will try. The courts are the best chance to stop him, and there are organizations ready to take him on. They need financial support.

An envelope is sitting on my shelf for mailing, with a check made out to the Institute for Justice. The IJ has beaten Trump before, when he tried to grab Vera Coking’s home under eminent domain to turn into a parking lot.

Other organizations are deserving. The Freedom of the Press Foundation has taken a stand against Trump. I haven’t studied it closely, but it looks like a deserving recipient.

I’m less sure about the ACLU. It’s done many good things, but lately it’s lost its focus. All the mail that I’ve received from it recently has attacked the freedom of private businesses to choose their customers, with no mention of other issues. At best, that’s out of its scope; even if you think that’s not a legitimate civil liberty, targeting it has nothing to do with the ACLU’s traditional goal of stopping governmental abuses of power.

This shouldn’t be a partisan issue. Even if you voted for Trump as the lesser evil, hopefully you understand that he’s still an evil and that everyone who cares about the country should want his attacks on freedom to fail. If you can, find a way to do something about it.

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4 Responses to “Practical steps to defend freedom against Trump”

  1. Eyal Mozes Says:

    I’m surprised you didn’t include the Cato Institute in your list; I’d have put them at the top (with IJ a close second). The Cato Institute is the one organization that has fought for the longest and most consistently to defend liberty in the US, in a very wide range of issues, and in all venues including the courts. They’ve been leading the battle against both Bush’s and Obama’s abuses of power, and are certain to lead the battle against Trump as well.

    Probably the two areas in which we can expect Trump to be at his worst, and to need fighting the most, are going to be on immigration and on treatment of refugees. None of the organizations you listed have focused on these areas (not a criticism of them; it’s just not their specialty). The Cato Institute, in contrast, has been a leader for a long time in the fight for more liberal policies both on immigration and on accepting refugees. Supporting them now is likely to be the best bang-for-the-buck way to oppose Trump.

    • Gary McGath Says:

      I think of the Cato Institute more as involved in theory and policy, which is important but not what I was focusing on here. Do they actually do a lot in the courts? I wasn’t aware of that.

      • Eyal Mozes Says:

        Cato’s involvement in the courts is less than that of IJ, but more than that of the Freedom of the Press Foundation. Cato does not function as a law firm directly initiating lawsuits or representing clients; but it is heavily involved as amicus curiae in many cases, before the Supreme Court as well in in lower courts; see here for an impressive list of the legal briefs they have filed.

      • Eyal Mozes Says:

        Also see here for a discussion of Cato’s amicus program and its record.


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