Modeled after Dumbledore’s Army in Harry Potter, an Anti-Trump ‘Resistance School’ that trains left-wing activists is expanding from Harvard University to UC Berkeley.
The organization previously attained media attention when its founding members compared themselves to the covert group in J.K. Rowling’s fantasy novels for overgrown children, in which Harry Potter and his friends must take on Lord Voldemort and save their magical school, Hogwarts, from destruction.
The so-called Resistance School will be expanding to UC Berkeley as part of a larger effort to “Reclaim, Rebuild and Reimagine an America built on progressive values.” Students at the university will be able to join their counterparts at Harvard in fighting Trump.
The online program offers a variety of handbooks for anti-Trump organizers and progressives to perform political activism. The group hopes to enable activists to win victories at the polling booths while advancing socially progressive values.
According to their press release, the Resistance School had over 175,000 participants in its first semester, prompting the creation of a new west coast campus.
“People all around this country continue to be engaged in the future of America,” claims Conor Hand, one of the organization’s co-founders. “This is time for all communities to echo our founding fathers – in the spirit of the people by the people – let’s reimagine our future, organize to reclaim it, and rebuild it around progressive values.”
It’s unclear how the values cherished by the founding fathers, such as freedom of speech, are going to be interpreted by progressives who consider certain viewpoints to be dangerous.
“Last semester affirmed a national appetite for skills-based training for sustained political organizing,” adds another co-founder, Kori Anderson. “Resistance School’s expansion at Berkeley is evidence of the need to further these skills.”
According to a Campus Reform report in June, the group’s first lecturer, Tim McCarthy, previously described President Trump as “sexist and shameless,” and “racist and reckless.” He also quoted Hillary Clinton’s claim that Trump is “temperamentally unfit” to be president.
The lecturer, who is a member of Harvard’s history department and the director of Social Justice Initiatives at the school, compared issues like sex change and sanctuary cities to national debates on the abolition of slavery and the American Revolution. He said that if it wasn’t for the efforts of America’s forefathers, the country would be a “far less decent place.” He urged students to follow in their lead by championing progressive issues.
“We’re not just living in a moment of despair and of fear and of loathing and anger and alienation and prejudice and all of that,” he said. “We’re living in a moment where we’re alive. We’re all woke. More than we were a little while ago.”
Neither Harvard University nor UC Berkeley are officially affiliated with the Resistance School, but campus faculty are invited to deliver addresses and lectures to students enrolled in the student-run, online program.