Trump’s election sparked activism

One silver lining for those who oppose the Trump presidency is that his election has stirred up the pot so much it has caused an explosion of anger, sort of a mini revolution that has gotten passive citizens to get off their butts, stand up and let their voices be heard.

The massive protest for women’s rights in Washington, D.C., and other major American cities was followed up last week by demonstrations at airports decrying the president’s executive order temporarily banning migrants, refugees and foreign nationals from seven majority Muslim countries.

Citizens have written letters to congressional representatives and senators, voiced their concerns by writing letters to the newspaper, and stood at local intersections holding signs to let motorists know their opinions.

It’s especially gratifying that people of all races, religions and economic backgrounds have stood alongside our Muslim brothers and sisters, speaking out against a ban many believe defies America values.

The protests have been non-violent, and for the most part have not interfered with the civil rights of others who hold a different view.

We wish it were the case, but apathy is far from dead.

Too many people continue to complain but do nothing. Too many people see the government as their master instead of the other way around. Too many people fail to take advantage of a basic American right, the right to vote.

On this point, Trump made a good argument referencing the Jan. 21 march in Washington, noting in a tweet: "Watched protests yesterday but was under the impression that we just had an election! Why didn’t these people vote?"

Of course many did, and one can assume many didn’t vote.

The president later tweeted: "Peaceful protests are a hallmark of our democracy. Even if I don’t always agree, I recognize the rights of people to express their views."

In general, it’s debatable whether protests bring about social change. That question aside, Democrats, Republicans and those of all political stripes, should applaud a citizenry that is not sheepish, but takes as celebrated author William Faulkner once said, to never be afraid to raise your voice for honesty and truth and compassion against injustice and lying and greed.

"If people all over the world would do this," he wrote, "it would change the earth."

MetroWest Daily News

Framingham, Mass.