‘Not My President:’ Thousands Protest Trump’s Victory at the Boston Common

On Boston Common on Wednesday evening, the crowd hurried toward the Parkman Bandstand. There, one of the organizers of the protest grabbed a microphone, stood on the top step of the rotunda, and led the chant that would come to represent the mood of the night: “not my president.” The crowd, thousands deep, was protesting Tuesday night’s presidential election of Donald Trump.

The discontent among the audience was palpable, with many still struggling to comprehend the events of the past 24 hours. Protesters arrived armed with signs of all shapes and sizes that expressed support for minorities and resentment toward Trump. The messages emblazoned on the signs ranged from “Love Trumps Hate” and “One Day at a Time” to “Soon the Poor Will Have Nothing to Eat But the Rich.”

Boston Socialist Students, Movement for the 99 percent, and Socialist Alternative organized the event, with more than 4,000 present, according to a spokesperson from the Boston Police Department. The protest mirrored many more taking place around the country, including a march in New York City that ended in front of the Trump Tower on Fifth Avenue.

The protest began with three speakers: a student with the Student Immigrant Movement, a woman with Fight for Fifteen, and a worker with Boston Socialist Alternative. Sabrina, the daughter of immigrants, was the first student speaker, and she spoke of the fear that many of Trump’s racist comments have incited within the immigrant community.


 


“I was afraid to get out of my house today [as] I didn’t know what was waiting outside the door,” she said. “You can’t take my mother away from me, and you can’t take my father … [he] is not a rapist, [he] is not a criminal.”

With helicopters flying overhead and police within sight in every discernible direction, the crowd moved through the Boston Common towards the State House. One of the protesters was a young woman with a broken ankle, struggling along the uneven terrain using a knee scooter but still determinedly moving forward.

Young individuals made up a large proportion of the crowd, with universities in the area well-represented, judging by the number of hats and sweatshirts from Boston University, Northeastern University, Boston College, and Emerson College. Alex Rougeau, MCAS ’18, was one of many showing his discontent with the result and expressing his fear for the future of the nation.

“What just happened posses a lot of threats to a lot of different groups of people, and the country,” he said. “Many are worriedLGBTQ, women, minorities are worried that a Trump presidency and a red Congress poses a threat to their rights … a lot of people are angry, and I’m definitely one of those people.”

Calling behind the crowd, one of the organizers reminded them that this rally was peaceful, “we will be united. Our weapon is a mass movement—that is our weapon.”

Protesters’ voices echoed into the streets as they chanted about Black Lives Matter, stopping the Dakota Access Pipeline, immigrant rights, fighting sexism, and fighting for LGBTQ+ rights.


 


As many exited the Boston Commons, a young woman walked into the flow of traffic. Facing oncoming cars, with her backpack still on, she screamed: “Ain’t no power like the power of the people, ‘cause the power of the people don’t stop!”

This Friday from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m., another peaceful rally will be held in the Boston Commons. Around 10,000 people have indicated that they are either interested in going or are going on the Facebook event page. During the same time, another rally will be held at Washington Square Park in New York.

No protesters were arrested at the peaceful rally, according to BPD.

Featured Image by Julia Hopkins / Heights Editor