By Frank Gormlie / OB Rag
An estimated 1500 San Diegans rallied and marched in downtown San Diego today to impeach the president of the United States. The first rally began around 11am in front of the County Admin building. About 45 minutes into the event, the crowd moved off the site onto the streets for a march around the western edge of downtown.
At one point, the marchers halted at a construction site along Pacific Highway owned by big-wig Doug Manchester, former owner of the U-T and grand hotelier to protest his policies. He was recently nominated by Trump to some post.
Go here for coverage of the Trumpista disrupting the protests + more photos
This reporter stood on a corner and counted more than 1300 people as they marched down Pacific Highway onto Harbor Drive. But I didn’t include those left behind at the rally site and all the stragglers.
Spirits were high, chants were loud and the signs were wonderfully creative. Lots of American flags – in fact, there was a huge US flag carried by over a dozen people that had the words, “Impeach Trump” in large letters. Lots of “Impeach Donald Trump!” chants, and “No Trump, No KKK, no fascist USA!”, plus “Trump is not our leader, he’s a creepy tweeter!” After the marchers took a turn, they returned to the County building for another rally.
There was a band of about 3 dozen counter-protesters, pro-Trump supporters who tried numerous times to disrupt the much larger demonstration with their own chants and music. Some were dressed in helmets and flak jackets and looked like they wanted to rumble. A few sheriffs and other police were around but they didn’t do much to prevent the alt-righters from trying to interfere.
But the event was totally peaceful overall.
Photos by Doug Porter, except where noted otherwise
Susing Borkenhagen says
I was at the front where the speakers were and the Proud Boys were very antagonistic. The speakers and organizers did a great job keeping the peace. I think that we actually got louder to drown out their siren and megaphone. So they got the opposite reaction of what they had intended and anticipated. This was my 8th March and I never saw this type of presence before. In the future I hope they stay in LA but if they don’t we will not fall for their provocations.
When they moved to the left of the stage, myself and a number of other attendees created a linked arm chain, or stood closely so that they could not push through via the side entrance to the stage. We turned our backs, an refused to engage in arguments with them. They were shouting a lot of racist things, which is how I knew it was more than just pro- Trump supporters engaging in disrupting the speeches. There were people with their entire faces covered, wearing helmets, and you think, “Okay, this could get bad.” I messaged a few people and told them I wasn’t even sure if we were going to march on time, or along the same route, because of the presence of these guys. Didn’t know they were part of an organized group, I just knew that they were hoping to push us into violence.
As someone who is disabled, there were definitely moments where I could feel my anger welling up. Being told to get a job, and hearing it shouted at people in wheelchairs. Then there were women wearing hijabs who definitely got some racist things shouted in their direction. If you want to protest that’s your right as a citizen, but when you come prepared for obvious violence, it just creates a really difficult situation for everyone.
I’m so sorry people felt threatened by these thugs. I will be contacting SDPD Chief Zimmerman and SDSO Sheriff Gore to let them know how unsafe we all felt. We need to be protected from these thugs wrapping themselves in the American flag. They’re just provocateur bullies. I hope others will contact the Chief and Sheriff as well so that there will be better and more security next time. Stay safe everyone.