Over the course of January and February, protest marches and demonstrations have gripped the attention of media. Some observers believe that President Trump has a strategy of issuing executive orders and taking actions at such a pace as to foster "resistance fatigue" among his opponents even as they organize ever more frequent protests. Some leftists and progressives have questioned the efficacy of protests. Spero News reported last month that an organizer of the Occupy Wall Street movement admitted that "protest is dead," while he suggested that leftists must consider "toppling, overthrowing Donald Trump." 

Daily protests

Progressives, Democrats, environmentalists, and leftists joined in last Thursday’s “Day Without an Immigrant” nationwide protests. Those protests were followed by a so-called “General Strike” on Friday in 100 cities. Then, on Sunday there was a huge rally in support of Muslims in New York City, where protesters (including Chelsea Clinton and her two-year-old child) chanted support for Muslims. In cities across the country today, Americans who had the day off in commemoration of President’s Day, many of whom are government employees, rallied in the streets for “Not My President’s Day” to condemn President Trump and his policies.

“Not My President’s Day” protests erupted in at least 25 cities across the country. The organizing page for the event in Los Angeles had 20,000 sign up. "Donald Trump stands against the progress we have worked hard to enact. He does not represent our interests," reads a statement on the Los Angeles Facebook page. "On February 20th, we will honor previous presidents by exercising our constitutional right to assemble and peacefully protest everything Donald Trump stands for."

The Facebook page for the event in Chicago expressed repudiation of President Trump and support for a laundry list of causes. It said: “We come together today in unity. We demonstrate our commitment to human rights for all individuals, as exemplified by Chicago’s Sanctuary City status. Instead, Trump intentionally has targeted the Muslim community, blocking immigrants and visa holders from seven majority-Muslim countries from entering the US, banned federal funds to international group that perform abortions or lobby to legalize or promote abortions, and purged the White House website of information pertaining to police brutality and LGBTQ rights.”

Resistance fatigue

These last five days of protests are in advance of many more to come and raises the specter of fatigue or burnout on the part of activists. In an essay at the Medium website, Yonatan Zunger wrote that Trump is actually seeking to wear out Americans opposed to him through the issuance of executive orders. Zunger wrote: "It wouldn't surprise me if the goal is to create 'resistance fatigue,' to get Americans to the point where they're more likely to say 'Oh, another protest? Don't you guys ever stop?' relatively quickly."

Apparently already concerned, Linda Sarsour -- an advocate of Muslim religious law and an organizer of the Women’s March on Washington -- admitted to NBC News that the effort is “exhausting,” and that she is trying to “practice what I preach” as to maintaining physical wellbeing. Sarsour is the executive director of the Arab American Association of New York and the sister-in-law of a man convicted of terrorism. She said that she will continue her protests regardless.  On Twitter, she wrote “I ate my first full meal in a few days. Not a good thing. Take care of yourselves. We r all we got.”

Leftists are planning to disrupt townhall appearances by Republicans in the next few days. For example, activists are being called to show up at townhall meetings scheduled by Congressman Fred Upton (R-MI) in Kalamazoo on February 21, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) in Houston on Feburary 21, and for Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) in Tampa on February 22. 

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Spero News writer Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. His first novel 'Shaken Earth', is available at Amazon.

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