Anti-Trump protesters peacefully marched to the Capitol Thursday night holding signs that read, ‘Climate change is real’ and ‘Not my president.’
On the steps of the capitol, Weber State student Crystal Hall, an LGBT woman with disabilities, burned an American flag.
“It represents our fear of what his presidency means for brown, black, queer and disabled people,” Hall said. “We will fight not only him but all oppressive structures and individuals.”
More than 1,500 citizens, including many University of Utah students, walked a route that started at the Wallace F. Bennett Federal Building and ended at the Capitol Building to protest president-elect Donald Trump.
“We reject the president-elect” protesters chanted.
An eight year old girl sat on the shoulders of her father and held a sign that read, “Never my president.”
Three U students, also members of Students for a Democratic Society (SDC), organized the protest. They assembled Trump objectors near 100 South and State Street.
For about one hour before protesters advanced up 100 South, representatives from Utah Against Police Brutality, Local Teamsters 222 and student organizers Ian Decker and Theresa Neilson addressed the audience with a series of speeches.
“It is not the voting booth where change happens, but in the streets,” said Neilson, a junior who helped organize the protest.
While demonstrators said that they were aware that the protest would not alter the election outcome, they believe it will still provoke change.
“We are taking a stand for all people to live free of exploitation and discrimination,” Neilson said.
Professor of Sociology, Frank Page, argues that Gen-X college students have faced discrimination with high tuition
and student loan debt; which he says is a contributor to the election out lashes.
“Students should organize and demonstrate,” Page said. “And more importantly, illuminate parts of the problem that have not been seen.”
An unofficial poll conducted by the Chronicle’s twitter page, showed that 53 percent of students who provided feedback voted Clinton while only 25 percent voted Trump.
Protestors held hard hitting signs such as: ‘I am gay. I am terrified” and “No human is illegal.” More lighthearted messages read: “Trump=Voldermort” and “Without immigrants, Trump would have no wives.”
The rally aimed to represent Americans who Trump has offended during his campaign: people of color, women, those with disabilities and the LGBTQ community.
A main sentiment of the crowd resonated with spreading love and support while also boldly declaring themselves as peaceful. As the group neared the capitol, it took on a new roar—“Peaceful protest.”
The police played a watchful yet lenient role in the rally, giving the citizens space and blocking streets for their safety. One police officer even acted as a crossing guard to assist protesters in front of the Capitol.
Hall compared the burning of the flag to her anticipated destruction of the country. “Something needs to burn to atone for its sins.”