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Last week, after Donald Trump, the purported President of the United States, learned the Democratic-dominated House of Representatives would, in fact, begin impeachment inquiries, he took to Twitter to tweet more than 100 times in a single day. He went from whining, to bragging, to threatening a whistle-blower, to predicting civil war if we didn't stop messing with him.
Trump has latched onto Twitter like a leech on the jugular and uses it as an unseemly venue for official policy, as his own personal PR firm, and as the delivery system for threats and intimidation against anyone or any organization threatening to expose or topple him.
It's because he understands the power of Twitter better than almost anybody.
There are Trump acolytes, there are trolls, there are bots, there are masters of disinformation everywhere, but I'm here to talk about those of us working against Trump, using Twitter to do it.
We are the #Resistance and we never sleep. We're out there and our numbers are growing. For us, Twitter is a battleground, it's a staging area, it's headquarters for those leading the charge against the tyranny that is Trumpism.
We're the witnesses, the couriers, the voices of the opposition. We follow the good guys and shed light on the disinformation coming from the bad guys, and, if nothing else comes of it, we take satisfaction where we can get it: We know we're getting to Trump when he has to tweet more than 100 times in a single day.
Through Twitter, we get real-time updates on the battles raging on every front, and we send them on, like smoke signals, to the resistance pods all around the country.
Is there a protest coming up? We know about it. Is there a March in the works? We pass along the info, right down to where to catch the buses.
When this rogue administration abuses citizens or foreigners or refugees, we've read the first hand accounts from the victims or their families and we send out tweets to lawyers or scholars or social justice warriors who are known to us now and are ready to help.
When someone fights the system and is in danger of being harmed, we expose the abuses. We know who to tweet to give them a hand. Millions of us retweet the information to give it more visibility.
Twitter is a morass of bad information but it's also a funnel for good journalism. When the press and/or the pundits get it right, we send their stories into the viralsphere. When they get it wrong, we show them the error of their ways--and we often win. We win because they can't ignore the Twitter warriors coming down on them, forcing them to look again.
Because the other side Tweets, too, we know their thoughts and see right through them. In mere minutes we can counter and dilute their lies. In mere minutes.
As with any war zone, there is a dark side. You may have noticed. There are forces working against the resistance, and they're experts at obfuscating and gaslighting. They're ruthless and formidable and sometimes terrifying. They come from every corner of the planet. Sometimes they're real and sometimes they're not. It's easy to get caught up in a whirlwind attack meant to intimidate and shut the resister down, but the Twitter Resistance community knows the difference and spreads the word.
That's where courage comes in, and we're bravest when we're not alone. The list below is my own personal list of people to follow on Twitter. I look to them for expertise, for analysis, for inspiration. I trust them. I know they've done their homework, and I know if they make a mistake they'll own up to it.
If you're new to Twitter, don't be intimidated by its uniqueness. Embrace it. When you follow any of these people, be sure to retweet their tweets. Retweeting begets retweeting and, if it begets often enough, it sends a viral message to the opposition. There are more of us than there are of them, and we're real. Don't buy into the lie that retweeting does no good. Getting our message out is part of being a community. This is how we do it. Commenting helps, too, even if you disagree. This is a dialogue, a conversation, a convention. Be a part of it.
These are our people and they're preaching to the choir, they're using their bullhorns to yell it loud, they're showing us by their light that ethics and decency are not dead. (Some of them are hilariously entertaining, but we need that, too.)
If Trump wants a digital civil war, we're way ahead of him. We're already at the battlements. New recruits are coming in every day. We're an all-volunteer army and we won't stop until we've stopped the madness.
So bring it on, fool.
Some of our Twitter buddies, in no particular order, with no particular significance. Check them out. This isn't a complete list, by any means, and I've left off both the politicians who are with us and the publications spreading the truth (because they're easy to find and I needed to save space), but it's a start:
Charles P. Pierce
Joyce Alene (Joyce White Vance)
Dr. Dena Grayson
Aunt Crabby Calls Bullshit
Brian J. Karem
Jill Wine Banks
Rabbi Jill Zimmerman
Susan Elizabeth (my daughter)
And me: Ramona Grigg. Because, as you can see, I know people.