The last couple weeks have saddened those of us who love the freedoms this country offers and who have tried over the last few decades to make those freedoms inclusive — but there is a silver lining. Masses of people are taking up this cause of resistance and are willing to go out and show their support to stop any incursions to democracy.
And they almost have it right.
Any presidency is ranked by the prosperity it brings to the country, which allows the living standard of its citizens to improve. That is the promise that Donald Trump and almost all politicians run on: improving life for the American middle class.
When corporations discriminate or hold positions that will hurt employees or the environment, at times a boycott is called for. Well, it seems that Trump’s Muslim travel ban has in itself handed us the way to force his hand.
While recent demonstrations have given us hope, we must now use future demonstrations to bring change. Simply put, they must be targeted. Targeted nonviolent protests sometimes cause inconvenience, but that inconvenience is what causes the change. Luckily those who demonstrated last week got it right: airports.
Airports have become a major economic hub of this nation. Here’s what the federal government, through the Federal Aviation Administration, states on the subject:
“Aviation-related manufacturing output for the entire United States increased 15.5 percent in real terms between 2009 and 2012, from $217.2 billion to $250.9 billion.”
That was in 2012, and just domestic. Bring it up to date and add in the international economic impact and the numbers are staggering. This from the JFK Airport’s own report:
“Employment and economic impact: About 37,000 people are employed at JFK. The airport contributes about $37.3 billion in economic activity to the New York-New Jersey metropolitan region, generating about 256,000 total jobs and $13.4 billion in annual wages and salaries.”
This is only a possible suggestion from an old activist …
Mark Segal, Philadelphia Gay News publisher, is the nation’s most-award-winning commentator in LGBT media. You can follow him on Facebook at MarkSegalPGN or Twitter at PhilaGayNews. His memoir AND THEN I DANCED is available online and at your favorite bookstore.