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What’s the Point? Why are People Protesting Trump

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From New York City to Miami, from Chicago to Dallas, from San Diego to Seattle, thousands of people in all corners of the United States have gathered in various cities to protest the election of Republican party presidential candidate Donald John Trump.

The large-scale city street protests mostly took place from Nov. 9 through Nov. 13, though college campus protests continued in large numbers up until Nov. 16. Apart from a riot in Portland Oregon that resulted in property damage and the nonfatal shooting of a man, the anti-Trump protests have largely been peaceful. However, many have resulted in blocked roads and bridges.

But why are these people protesting? What are they trying to accomplish? The Current has interviewed several Carthage students who attended anti-Trump protests. Victoria Jadczak, ‘19, attended one in Chicago on Nov. 12. Cassidy Boyle, ‘19, and Colin Kielp, ‘19, both attended one in Milwaukee on Nov. 10. The protests seem to be taking place for several key reasons.

1. Denounce what they believe Trump stands for.

One of the most notable aspects of Trump’s presidential campaign is his numerous derogatory comments directed at various groups of people, including African Americans, Latinos, Muslims, women, veterans and people with disabilities. “I don’t think anyone who’s made numerous attacks on numerous demographics should ever be in position of such power,” said Kielp.

This opposition also included voicing dislike for Trump’s discriminating policies. “At the very least we want him to reverse a lot of what he said he’d do,” said Jadczak, “A lot of the protesters there were protesting the Dakota Access Pipeline, which is something Trump wants to do; he has pushed a couple billion [dollars] into that project. The pipeline could pollute the water of the indigenous population at risk, not to mention cut into their sacred ground.”

2. Show support for those who Trump has attacked

“Hate crimes have gone up. People are using Trump’s rhetoric to justify their hateful tendencies,” said Boyle. According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, there have in fact been 701 xenophobia-infused attacks between Nov. 9 and Nov. 16, some of which included references to Trump and his speeches. “I was [at the Trump protest] mostly to show solidarity to those who felt unsafe after the election,” said Kielp.

3. Demonstrate dissatisfaction with the electoral college

Despite winning the election via the electoral college, Trump lost the popular vote by 1.27 percent, making this the fifth time in U.S. history a presidential candidate has won the election without winning the popular vote. “We want to show that a lot of people aren’t happy with the electoral college and what it gave us, from a democratic standpoint, Hillary should have won,” Boyle said.

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