Skipping Saturday’s protests could be the most ethical choice Trump opponents can make
As luminaries from Jon Voight to the Riverdance guy descend on Washington DC for the inauguration of Donald J. Trump, many critics of the next US president are planning protests closer to their homes.
An estimated 1 million people are expected at anti-Trump demonstrations in all 50 U.S. states and 32 countries. There have been calls on Twitter to boycott even the televised broadcast of the Jan. 20 ceremony, and to deprive Trump of his much-beloved ratings by turning televisions to another channel during the swearing-in. (Don’t bother. Unless you belong to one of the 40,000 U.S. Nielsen households, this will have no effect on inaugural ratings.)
On the other hand, unless you happen to be the US Supreme Court chief justice or someone else with a direct role in the transition of power, ethicists say, you can avoid the ceremony entirely without shirking any duty as a citizen. “Nothing is going to happen there that is going to help you become a more informed voter,” says Jason Brennan, an associate professor of strategy, economics, ethics, and public policy at Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business.
Brennan goes a step further. Protesting the…