July 21, 2016:
Protesters are making their voices heard every day at the RNC convention. Laura Brickman reports from Cleveland.
Several hundred demonstrators gathered in a public square in downtown Cleveland today for the third consecutive day of protests outside of the Republican National Convention. Mixed in with small group of Trump supporters and dozens of police, progressive organizers from groups including Iraq Veterans Against the War, Code Pink, and Seeds for Peace joined Mijente, a Latino organizing group, to form a “wall of Trump” in criticism of Trump’s call to build a wall at the Mexican border. Here’s Pete Woiwode from Mijente.
[Pete Woiwode]: "We’ve got about 1,500 feet of wall here and Donald Trump has said he wants to build a wall, so we’re building one. But we’re building one not to separate people, not to lock people up, not to divide families, but to stand against bigotry, stand against hatred, stand against racism and sexism… "So our wall stands for a country where everyone has a place, where we can all be taken care of as opposed to being demonized and threatened… What’s happening inside the stadium is not America, it’s not what people across the country hope for from their government. So it’s been a powerful few days on the outside and a terrifying few days to watch what’s happening on the inside.
Emily Yates, an Iraq veteran and member of Iraq Veterans Against the War told my why she drove from Oakland, California to protest at the Republican Convention.
When we see people, regular Americans speaking out with hate and fear against these groups it’s not because they just came up with that idea on their own, they’ve been getting fed this rhetoric… and Trump is actually going so far as to embody and to say all these things that are being implied… It just doesn’t make sense… what if we blamed all white people for the actions of white supremacists. It’s the same logic, but unfortunately it seems like logic isn’t playing a big role…. Our politicians and especially Trump is feeding into these emotions, this anger and this frustration … That doesn’t credit the sacrifice we make, to see our country unnecessarily divided and filled with hateful rhetoric toward our immigrant brothers and sisters and our Muslim brothers and sisters…
As Mijente’s demonstration came to a close , a handful of men from the Westboro Baptist Church arrived with a megaphone, carrying signs including one that read AIDS: Judgement or Curse.
Westboro: "Every life matters. Police officers matter, white lives matter, brown lives matter, you black matter are anti-America."
As police officers created a blockade between the Westboro members and the hundreds of other protestors, the protestors started to chant, drowning out the Westboro megaphone
Demonstrators: "What do we want? Justice. When do we want it? Now. And if we don’t get it shut it down."
Emily Yates: "Yeah you know, a trolls gonna troll. They’re trolling humanity and nothing they’re doing is helping people. Luckily there’s just a few of them compared to all the rest of us."
For Workers Independent News this is Laura Brickman from Cleveland.