The Rule in Our Apartment

This Republican administration is not allowed inside our apartment. Our new rule inside the walls of our studio: No Facebook. No Reddit. No news sites that we don’t pay for. 

The rule is meant to maintain a space for sanity in the midst of so much chaos and devastating updates all around us. One night during our time away, (a week when we weren’t connected to news or social media), Nick and I were talking over dinner. The conversation turned to the state of our country. Nick, with tears in his eyes, told me, “This has entered our personal space so much. It takes up so much of the conversation between me and you. I don’t want this administration to have that much control over our lives.”

So, we decided to lay down the rule for our home. Now, that does not mean we’re going to tune out. It means we’re going to connect to social media only outside our apartment and only outside our work spaces. So, we’ll connect daily, but not for as long as before and not in our safe spaces.

As part of the new rule, we’ve also added another form of resistance: Investing our money in reputable news sources. Since coming home we’ve paid $152 for annual subscriptions to The Nation, the New Yorker, and the Washington Post. Reading the news sources we pay for is allowed in our apartment.

Purchasing journalism is a form of resistance because this Republican administration is attacking our freedom of speech, press and reporters in the most alarming and unprecedented fashion:

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We’ve been back from our getaway for just over three days. In that time we’ve caught up on what I call, “life admin”, meaning we did laundry, went to the grocery and (finally) took down the Christmas tree. The fact that the tree was still up is a testament to just how busy we’ve been as we try to adjust to our new lives since Trump won the election.

Re-entering the chaos of our country has been a gut-wrenching experience. I seriously felt a knot in the pit of my stomach when I looked at news headlines for the first time in a week. My anxiety skyrocketed as I read these headlines and wondered if our democracy can possibly survive:

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In Seattle we’re seeing reports of legal immigrants backing out of home purchases in our city because they can’t be certain their immigration status won’t be revoked. We’re seeing churches form an underground network to hide immigrants who are in danger of being deported at any moment, and rightfully so, as we’ve already seen Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in action, arresting a young man who came to Seattle legally under Obama’s DACA program:

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Local organizations in Seattle have launched a full slate of emergency trainings for immigrants to learn how to protect themselves and their families from law enforcement officers. Can you believe this? We now have trainings for how to protect us from law enforcement! Here’s a list of emergency trainings at El Centro de la Raza on Seattle’s south side:

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Also, as a sign of the juncture we find ourselves in, I’ve gotten an invitation to attend lessons with anti-fascists on how to shoot a gun, here’s the alarming message I saw:

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We’ve also received an invitation to attend a training on what to do to prepare to move to Canada. That training was this weekend:

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I continue to find at least some comfort in seeing Seattle’s leaders resist, as well as leaders of our state. Our mayor announced plans to sue this Republican Administration, our governor is blocking local law-enforcement agencies from complying with immigration orders and our state attorney general is going to fight for our legal marijuana laws (No, Republicans, you will not take away our coping mechanisms and the hundreds of millions of dollars it produces in tax revenue!). Our mayor also gave his State of the City speech inside a local mosque. Here are some of the local news headlines we’ve come home to:

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