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The Trump presidency has already prompted record protests, most of them peaceful, but a march or two won't be enough to bring about lasting change, Ashley Nicole Black said on Wednesday's Full Frontal. That is what she learned from talking with five veterans of the civil rights movement, and she edited the interviews into a practical guide for a new generation of change agents. "These patriots, they marched, they protested, they were nonviolent, but most importantly, they filled out everything in triplicate," Black said.
It was hard work, it was often mundane, and there was frequently little or nothing to show for it, at least in the short term. "The March on Washington? That was R&R for us," said Frank Smith Jr. "It was a time for us to get away from Mississippi for a few days, then go off to some place where we didn't have to be worried about being chased by the sheriff. We could have a drink somewhere without being worried about being stopped on the way home."
Change isn't quick, and it isn't something you can do by yourself. "Every revolution succeeds because of the foot soldiers and the sergeants," explained Luvaugn Brown. Dorie Ladner — who apparently had a thing with Bob Dylan — emphasized the power of song to boost spirits. "We used to have a saying: Bloom where you're planted," added Joan Trumpauer Mulholland. "Look at what's happening right in your immediate situation; try to act there." The five elders of protest agreed that marching, and marching again is important. "Because in 50 years, your grandchildren will probably have to do this all over again," Black said. Watch below. Peter Weber