Trump Opponents, Supporters Hold San Diego Rallies
Friday, January 20, 2017
Photo by Erik Anderson / KPBS
Opponents of President-elect Donald Trump scheduled three rallies in San Diego Friday, the day the billionaire real estate magnate was sworn-in to office.
At 10:30 a.m., the San Diego Alliance for Justice held a rally at San Diego City College and was expected to march to the Federal Building on Front Street, then Chicano Park for a 3 p.m. rally.
At noon, a group called Answer San Diego was expected to demonstrate on the lawn at Park Boulevard and President's Way in Balboa Park. They also planned to walk to the Federal Building.
"As we approach the inauguration of Trump, we denounce all of the rhetoric he used to get to this point, but we do not have to accept it," Answer San Diego wrote on its Facebook event page.
The group Union del Barrio planned another rally, this one at Chicano Park beginning at 5 p.m.
"Only through organized struggle can we resist this crazy man — and resist we must!" a statement on the Union del Barrio Facebook event page said. "Mass community actions throughout the country will help send a clear message that we are not paralyzed with fear, we will respond, and WE ARE ORGANIZED!"
Thad Kousser, a UC San Diego political scientist, said it remains to be seen if the social antipathy to the incoming president can be translated into an effective political movement.
"Groups on the left aren't giving Donald Trump a long chance to prove that he can be a centrist, but I think what he did in his campaign and what he's done in his transition are probably grounds enough for the left to say, `Yeah, so we don't like him,' " Kousser said. "The question will be whether the left will have the patience and persistence, and be willing to engage in the politics that it takes to turn his politics around."
But some San Diegans are looking forward to the change Trump has promised. A group of Republican students at UC San Diego gathered to celebrate Friday morning.
“I’m excited for more jobs, I’m excited for a better border policy and I’m excited about a president who’s willing to support our police and our military,” said student Samuel Roberts.
During the protest, some students linked arms to represent Trump’s border wall and to keep the group of Trump supporters out of their gathering.
Quinton Grounds, who heads the Republican group, said it shows that his group has a lot of work to do. “We realize that a community isn’t just one group. It’s everyone working together. And I don’t look at them with any animosity. Instead I want them to be our friends,” he said.
Some 400 supporters attended a breakfast at Fairbanks Ranch to watch the inauguration and toast to the new president, according to the San Diego Union-Tribune.
In the county, 36.4 percent of voters cast their ballots for Trump.
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