On election night, we held a Boston Review event in San Francisco. Things did not turn out as had planned. The room was filled with people suffering from vertiginous disorientation.
Over the subsequent week, disorientation has yielded quickly to concerted action. In major cities, tens of thousands of opponents of Trump’s politics have taken to the streets. The ACLU has announced the greatest expression of support in its history, and has posted a “See you in Court” banner on its website alongside a photo of Donald Trump. Bernie Sanders has said: “I think that people are saying, ‘Mr. Trump, we have come too far in this country fighting discrimination and bigotry. We’re not going back. And if you’re going to continue that effort, you’re going to have to take us on.’” And California’s legislative leaders have announced that they will “lead the resistance to any effort that would shred our social fabric or our Constitution.”
This is a forum for debate, argument, and disagreement, in hopeful defense of our experiment in a deeply pluralistic democracy.
So the Trump victory has spurred wakeful action—in hopeful defense of our experiment in a deeply pluralistic democracy, against the background of repulsive levels of economic and political inequality. The directions of that action and its guiding ideas remain very much open. But the debate has begun, and we plan to provide a forum for it, a space of argument where people can disagree sharply—about philosophical principles and political strategies. We are going to keep it serious and focused, guided by reason and attentive to evidence.
That is what Boston Review is about: promoting the kind of debate that democracy depends on. Now more than ever.