Anti-Trump protests smaller, more organized
Chicago – Days after President Donald Trump killed an Iranian general and said he was sending more soldiers to the Middle East, about 100 protesters stood on a pedestrian bridge over Chicago’s Lake Shore Drive with an illuminated sign that read “No War in Iran.”
Some 200 people marched in the bitter cold near Boston, while a few dozen people demonstrated on the steps of Los Angeles City Hall and at similarly sized gatherings across the U.S.
Three years after Trump took office and millions of people swarmed to the Women’s March in Washington and companion marches across the country, these typically modest protests are often the most visible sign of today’s Trump resistance.
Activists say the numbers should not be mistaken for a lack of energy or motivation to vote Trump out of office come November.
The anti-Trump movement of 2020, they say, is more organized and more focused on action. Many people have moved from protesting to knocking on doors for candidates, mailing postcards to voters, advocating for specific causes or running for office.
But the movement that sprung up to oppose Trump’s presidency also is more splintered than it was when pink-hatted protesters flooded Washington the day after his inauguration for what is generally regarded as the largest protest in the city since the Vietnam era. There have been schisms over which presidential candidates to back in 2020, as well as disagreements about race and religion and about whether the march reflected the diversity of the movement. Those divisions linger even as many on the left say they need a united front heading into November’s election.
The disputes led to dueling events in New York City last year, the resignation of some national Women’s March leaders and the disbanding of a group in Washington state.
Organizers expect about 100,000 people across the country to participate in this year’s Women’s March, which is scheduled for Saturday in over 180 cities. They say up to 10,000 people are expected at the march in Washington, far fewer than the turnout last year, when about 100,000 people held a rally east of the White House. Instead of a single big event, the group has been holding actions in a run-up to the march this week around three key issues: climate change, immigration and reproductive rights.
The week reflects that the movement is “moving into the next stage,” said director Caitlin Breedlove.
Leaders of MoveOn.org, which organized some of the anti-Iran war protests, agreed. Mobilization manager Kate Alexander said the group and its members pulled together over 370 protests in 46 states in less than 48 hours to show resistance to Trump’s actions in the ordering of airstrikes that killed Gen. Qassem Soleimani, the head of Iran’s Quds Force who has been blamed for deadly attacks.
What: Macomb Michigan Women's March Sister March
When: Noon Saturday
Where: Patridge Creek Mall, sidewalk between mall and M-59 17420 Hall Road, Clinton Township