Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Congressmen Castro, Doggett Will Boycott Trump Inauguration

Posted By on Tue, Jan 17, 2017 at 1:53 PM

Rep. Joaquin Castro. - WIKIMEDIA COMMONS
  • Wikimedia Commons
  • Rep. Joaquin Castro.
Three Texas congressmen, Rep. Joaquin Castro, Rep. Lloyd Doggett and Rep. Al Green, have pledged to join more than 50 representatives in boycotting President-elect Donald  Trump's inauguration. Two of them represent San Antonio.

This boycott was originally inspired by Trump's weekend dismissal of Rep. John Lewis' undisputed role in the civil rights movement.  After Lewis told a reporter that Trump was not a “legitimate president,” Trump (unsurprisingly) sped to Twitter to shred the Georgia congressman's reputation.

“All talk, talk, talk — no action or results. Sad!" Trump wrote about Lewis' legacy.  As a reminder, Lewis led dozens of nonviolent civil rights protests across the country — and had his skull fractured by law enforcement officers while marching on “Bloody Sunday.”

This morning, Rep. Castro, who represents the majority of San Antonio's West Side, explained how Trump's response influenced his decision to skip the Friday event.

“I come from a family and a place, Texas, where respect is a fundamental value – respect for people regardless of what they look like, where they were born, or whether they share your view of the world," Castro wrote in a statement. "Donald Trump has shown an utter lack of respect for so many Americans. His attack on civil rights hero John Lewis is the latest example."

Castro will, however, be in Washington, D.C., to greet his constituents who are attending the event.

Houston Rep. Al Green cited Martin Luther King, Jr. when he announced on Monday that he'd be boycotting the event  —  saying his attendance would clash with his conscience.

"‘Cowardice asks the question, is it safe? Expediency asks the question, is it politic? Vanity asks the question, is it popular?'," he wrote in a statement, quoting King. "'But, conscience asks the question, is it right? And there comes a time when we must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular, but one must take it because it is right.'"

Rep. Doggett announced his decision Tuesday via Twitter: "We are sending a message to Mr. Trump. Respect, like Pennsylvania Avenue, is a two-way street. Instead of uniting our country, his continued unprecedented, unpresidential actions are further dividing it," he posted. "We are in for a long struggle that must strategically utilize every nonviolent opposition tool available."

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