Marking the outcome of the 2016 Presidential Election was an eruption of shock and outrage.
To many, the election of Donald Trump threatened the ideals of this country as well as the women and people of color in it. For him to successfully run a campaign based on fear-mongering and hate, people were afraid that his victory would legitimize outright racism, xenophobia, Islamophobia and sexual assault. Their fears were realized as people across the country experienced a spike of hate crimes, vandalism, sexual harassment, microagressions, and macroagressions made in Trump’s name.
The people responded, “Not My President” and took to the streets to protest in the Bay Area, Los Angeles, New York City, Chicago, Boston, Washington DC, Dallas, Austin, Portland, Seattle, Indianapolis, Iowa City, Atlanta, Athens, Kansas City, and Richmond amongst many others across the country.
Many people, regardless of their political affiliations, were annoyed by these demonstrations, as they felt there was no purpose in protesting the election. They were gravely mistaken. The purpose of a protest is to illustrate moral outrage.
After Trump was elected President, the people marched through the streets, screaming and holding up signs, to show the targeting of certain communities in our society is unacceptable and that the people will fight against these injustices.
These protests were a sign that we were not going back to an America, where people of color feared for the right to express themselves and to protect their livelihoods, where Muslim and immigrant children feared deportation and harassment, where the LGBTQ society felt outright persecuted, and where sexual assault would be accepted. Instead, as we go into the fifth day of protests across the Nation, we realize we are stepping forward into an inclusive America, where we unite against those that threaten to divide us with hate.
“I don’t know what we can actually do to change things, but we have to keep coming and making sure his hatred and his fear and the anger that he’s stirring up and using to get elected doesn’t manifest itself in our country.”- protester Allen Meisner of New York City