Rebel Girls: 10 Ways to Resist on Inauguration Day

Header by Rory Midhani

Header by Rory Midhani

Donald Trump is going to become the honest-to-god President of the United States on Friday. In exchange, the universe had Keely give me my last Christmas gift and it just so happened to be a mason jar of homemade pineapple vodka and a crop top that says “I hate this.”

Many of us have spent the months since the election resisting Donald Trump and everything he stands for. Also, weeping. But the real resistance begins Friday, when the White House, Senate, and House will officially all be dominated by science-denying, bigoted, cowardly little men who call themselves “Republicans.”

Don’t give Trump a moment to get comfortable. Let’s start fucking shit up as soon as he starts being sworn in. Here’s 10 ways to resist on Inauguration Day.

Ringo Chiu / AFP/Getty Images

1. Don’t Watch the Inauguration…

For the love of Goddess, please do not watch the Inauguration. Do not watch a live stream. Do not turn on the television. Do not watch it in a house. Do not watch it with a mouse. Watch it unfold through tweets and read the transcripts as they’re posted. Read articles about it in news outlets you trust. Do not give Donald Trump the respect of your eyes and ears in real time. Do not give him good ratings. Treat yoself and get out of the damn house instead. (Unless you live in DC. Stay inside and play Candy Crush or whatever.) If you really wanna know what’s happening, Riese & Erin will be liveblogging it for you on Autostraddle, which is all you need.

2. But Get Ready for the March!

Go to a Women’s March on Saturday if you can. Do the damn thing.

3. Give Money to Someone or Something Donald Trump Hates

Give to a feminist non-profit. Donate to your local abortion clinic. Rent a Meryl Streep movie at the woman-owned video store. I really don’t care what you do with your money, but I hope on Inauguration Day you buy some cute feminist shirts from an indie merchant and give all of your money to an activist organization, a progressive think-tank, a service organization, and/or a political organization that stands for you in Donald Trump’s name so as to make him a better person.

4. Volunteer All Day

You won’t even have time to think about Donald Trump’s inauguration when you’re ladling soup into a bowl, cleaning up trash on the side of the road, picking up phones for a hot line, and turning yourself into a human shield outside of an abortion clinic.

5. Call Your Member of Congress About Trump’s Cabinet and Trump’s Agenda

Let your lawmakers know that you plan to watch them and hold them accountable. Use the power of your vote to pressure them through constituent activism by calling their offices in opposition to bills that would leave millions without health insurance and nominees for the Trump cabinet who would disgrace their own offices and this nation’s history. Let them know they can expect you to vote in the next election to show them you weren’t fucking around.

6. Read Up on Trump, Current Affairs, and Movement-Making

Spend the day curled up with a good book on autocracy, authoritarianism, and strategic resistance. (Here are some of my recommendations.) Or, spend the day on Twitter reading threads about his inner circle and his horrific vision for this country to prep for your next big move. Or, spend the day reading about his conflicts of interest and the potential that he is a legitimately illegitimate president so that you become prepared to tell everyone you know that information as quickly and concisely as possible every day for the next four years.

7. Subscribe to the Media Holding Trump Accountable

I’ve subscribed to Teen Vogue, Vanity Fair, and the Washington Post in the last three months. I’ve never been more proud to work at Ms. Autostraddle will never let you down. There’s honestly never been a better time for you to support feminist, progressive, and/or — preferably and! —independent media. We need them. We need people to tell the truth. We need people to make us laugh. We need someone to remember us.

8. Talk to Someone IRL About How Much Donald Trump Sucks

Have a difficult conversation on Friday about Donald Trump with a sad and broken person who voted for Trump. Destroy them.

9. Post Something on the Internet That Makes Donald Trump Look Like a Loser

Donald Trump’s reputation is yours for shredding into a million pieces and lighting on fire outside. Post something about the allegations that he’s a serial rapist. Post something about his business failings. Post something about his work to steadily destroy the republic. Post something about his inability to grasp the job. Post something that makes you forget that this man once sold a tee shirt with Hillary Clinton’s face on it that said simply “Sad!” and now he’s the fucking president.

10. Fucking Feel Yourself

Take a long shower. Masturbate. Make out. Get something delicious to eat. Go shopping. Wear whatever the fuck you want. Flip someone off when they stop short before the crosswalk. I give you permission to spend the entirety of Friday being exactly who you are and loving every little inch of what that means. Plus, there will be time to mourn the death of our nation later, I think. Take the day off.

Rebel Girls is a column about women’s studies, the feminist movement, and the historical intersections of both of them. It’s kind of like taking a class, but better – because you don’t have to wear pants. To contact your professor privately, email carmen at autostraddle dot com. Ask questions about the lesson in the comments!

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Carmen spent six years at Autostraddle, ultimately serving as Straddleverse Director, Feminism Editor and Social Media Co-Director. She is now the Consulting Digital Editor at Ms. and writes regularly for DAME, the Women’s Media Center, the National Women’s History Museum and other prominent feminist platforms; her work has also been published in print and online by outlets like BuzzFeed, Bitch, Bust, CityLab, ElixHER, Feministing, Feminist Formations, GirlBoss, GrokNation, MEL, Mic and SIGNS, and she is a co-founder of Argot Magazine. You can find Carmen on Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr or in the drive-thru line at the nearest In-N-Out.

Carmen has written 919 articles for us.


  1. If yoy have cable or satellite tv, instead of turning off the tv, leave it on to something/anything else. The discovery channel, sci-fi reruns…. TV ratings are calculated by what the people with the TV on are watching. If 20% of people leave it off, that just raises the % watching. If you have it on tuned to something else, it takes away from the % watching.

    • I think women’s health is integral to both, so Planned Parenthood is always my go-to. Lambda Legal is another great option. Feminist/queer publications to support: Ms., Bitch, Curve.

    • Besides my A+ membership, I like to give to the National Network of Abortion Funds because of their intersectional visions.

    • Transgender Law Center, and the Tervor Project are other good ones, as is donating to Plan Parenthood on behalf of Trump or Mike Pence.

  2. This is a great list! However, a lot of different anti-trump movements are calling for a general strike on Friday — which includes no shopping! Perhaps the feel yourself section need not include consumerism on this day?

    • I understand the point you want to make, but it bothers me that it perpetuates something that plagues liberal communities: the perfect is the enemy of the good. I think it’s more powerful to speak about why YOU personally believe that not shopping on Friday will make a difference rather than proscribing it for all of us.

      Though it wasn’t explicit, my feeling about the recommendation to “go shopping” is not about going out to buy a shiny new thing to pretend this isn’t happening. It’s about being conscious that the money that you spend affects real humans. Rejecting consumerism as a whole, in my view, is an empty gesture when there are small businesses run by marginalized groups in my neighborhood that are already struggling and will be more so once Trump is in office and our economy tanks.

      Since the election, I’ve made a commitment to shop locally in ways I never would have before (for, say, dog food because it’s $20 at the local pet store vs online) at businesses in an effort to ground myself in my city. I know that “buy locally” is a cliché, but in my case, it’s made a difference in feeling committed to local community and building relationships. The choice of where to spend my money when so many other things are out of my control means something to me and the people who benefit from my dollars.

      • Local businesses can be horrible to work for, too. Anyone can be a tyrant under capitalism! If you need to buy dog food or meds or peanut butter but also feel the need to be ok with capitalism, just slip your cashier or server a $20. They probably need it.

        • I think this is needlessly condescending and if you’re here to score points on the “who can take down the capitalist pigs” front, I suggest you join an anti-capitalism Reddit.

          What were you hoping to accomplish by explaining to me that if I feel the “need to be okay with capitalism” (LOL okay welcome to the real world in which we exchange money for goods!) other than patting yourself on the back?

          Of course local businesses can be terrible. I doubt anyone on Autostraddle making a conscious effort to spend their money locally isn’t doing their due diligence on whether a business is aiding traditionally marginalized communities or not.

  3. I’ll be in tech for a production of The Laramie Project on the day of the Woman’s March, which is sad. But we’re doing the Laramie Project, so I’ll just stick that in the win column anyway.

  4. Re: #1 – instead of watching the inaugural address directly, you can read NPR’s FACT CHECK of it, because that is a thing we need now. A live fact check of a presidential inaugural address.

  5. also join political organizers to sustain the resistance! read about the revolutionary resistance movements of the past and join forces to fight racism, cisheteropatriarchy, poverty, capitalism, etc etc.

  6. Saturday the 21st I am having my birthday party game night thing with a bunch of queers & co. so that is my “let’s hold each other and cry and also play Harry Potter Trivial Pursuit and plot against Trump while celebrating the fact that I’m turning 26” day of resistance. And everyone gets to meet my girlfriend!!!

  7. I got an idea.
    If you have an American flag pin, wear it upside down all day long.
    Flying the flag upside down is historically a distress symbol and if this inauguration isn’t an instance of distress I don’t what is.

    Also, also, also…
    If anybody feels like treating themselves and giving money to something Drumpf or his Death Eaters hates at the same time, Sock Dreams is donating $4 to Southern Poverty Law Center for every purchase of these socks:

    Dreamer Roll Tops in crew, knee high and thigh highs which come in purple, grey, white and black

    They will be doing this until the end of January.

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