Trump protestors in November took to the streets of Long Beach to voice their opposition to the newly elected president. File Photo
As Donald Trump transitions from being President-elect Trump to President Trump Friday morning, Long Beach organizers have prepared for the community’s voice to continue being heard with a protest march Friday night.
The May Day Long Beach Coalition, a group of nearly 20 community groups from in and around Long Beach are expecting around 500 people to join them in the show of disapproval that starts at Harvey Milk Park at 5:00PM.
A short program will kick off the march that is set to end at Promenade Square with a closing program where guest speakers will address varying topics that Trump has come under fire for in the past year, including his proposed ban on Muslims from entering the United States, threats of mass deportation as well as the spike in hate crimes toward women, LGBTQ persons and other minorities since his victory during the November election after which hundreds of protestors took to the streets to denounce his victory.
“The May Day Long Beach Coalition strongly condemns President-elect Donald J. Trump’s attacks on Muslims, people of color, immigrants, differently-abled people, women, the LGBTQ community, and the working class,” the coalition said in a statement. “As Thomas Jefferson once wrote, ‘When injustice becomes law, resistance becomes duty.’”
Michelle Tio, a representative for the coalition, said that the march will represent the sentiment that those participating don’t view Trump as their president. She pointed out that the popular vote—Hillary Clinton secured nearly three million more votes than Trump—and the “archaic” electoral college victory have made him an illegitimate president.
She said the march will serve as a springboard for resistance for the coalition, one that represents a diverse array of communities, most of which were the target of disparaging remarks by Trump during his campaign.
“He’s attacking people left and right in our communities whether it be women, Muslims, Latinos, LGBTQ,” Tio said. “I think it’s really important to show resistance at this point in time to get our voices heard and to make sure that Donald Trump and his administration know that we’re not happy and we’ll be fighting.”
The coalition includes the Long Beach chapter of Black Lives Matter, the Filipino Migrant Center, the Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy and the Long Beach Area Peace Network, to name a few.
Marshall Blesofsky, a member of the Peace Network’s steering committee, said that while his group’s primary focus will be on a women’s march planned to take place in Los Angeles Saturday morning, the efforts are indicative of the feelings surrounding Trump and his incoming administration.
He noted that the president-elect and his cabinet appointments are not “in tune” with the group’s world view or stance on policies and that it only made sense for the peace network—a group focused on peace and social justice—to be a part of this weekend’s protest movements.
“This represents the beginning of resistance,” Blesofsky said. “We don’t feel that Donald Trump is really our candidate or president and we’re really opposed to almost everything he wants to do. We’re hoping to send a message that we’re not just going to sit by and let our country be changed in such a way, or go back to the 50s.”
Protests are scheduled to take place in every state and over 30 countries, according to the New York Times, including a women’s march in the nation’s capital that is expected to draw some 200,000 demonstrating against the incoming administration.
The list of speakers who will give remarks at the start and conclusion of the march have yet to be hammered out, Tio said. She said that the estimate of 500 people expected to attend is probably a conservative guess and that the coalition expects attendance to be much larger given the gravity of Inauguration Day.
“I think this is going to be huge,” Tio said. “Five hundred is definitely a low estimate, I’m thinking probably more around 700. Of course I could be wrong, I have a feeling it’s going to be a lot more.”
The protest march is scheduled for 5:00PM at Harvey Milk Park located on Third Street between Pine Ave and Long Beach Boulevard. The event page can be found here.