By Paul Logsdon–
There is no doubt that the 2017 presidential election has been anything short of controversial. With the inauguration of President Donald Trump Jan. 20, many were either celebrating or coming together to make their voices heard like the Louisville Black Lives Matter and the Students for Reproductive Freedom.
U of L College Republicans member Evan Wright attended the inauguration Friday in Washington, D.C.
At the beginning of the day, Wright thought there would be major disruptions. When he didn’t see any protestors in his section, anticipation and excitement took over.
“Trump’s speech, his taking of the oath and other ceremonies were enough to move some to tears of joy,” Wright said.
It wasn’t until after the inauguration that Evan witnessed anti-Trump protestors.
“When I attended the ball with my father, protestors were very rude. They were yelling obscenities at people with children around while bumping into each other. It was sad to see displays such as those and it’s a shame to see people waste their freedom of speech like that,” Wright said.
Jaison Gardner of Black Lives Matter Louisville organized an anti-inauguration party on Friday, which was advertised as a no hate event using promotional hash tags like #notmypresident, #nowall, #noracism, #nosexism and #nohomophobia.
“The #NoHate party was created so that folk with all the various feelings around Trump’s election can get together to support and uplift one another, strategize ways to move forward collectively and, most importantly, to dance, party and have a good time in that moment,” Gardner said.
“Donald J. Trump is the current president. That’s an indisputable fact,” Gardner said, concerning the “not my president” hash tag.
U of L student Jennifer Mansfield works in the Women’s Center on campus and she is a member of Students For Reproductive Justice.
Mansfield participated in a women’s march in Lexington, Kentucky where approximately 6,000 others gathered peacefully “to show that we stand in solidarity to protect the marginalized groups that feel threatened under a Trump administration and Republican Congress.” These groups include the LGBTQ community, people of color, immigrants, those with disabilities, the Muslim community, women and climate change activists.”
Representatives Attica Scott and Kelly Flood along with Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes and Senator Reggie Thomas were in attendance. They spoke about the importance of mobilizing and creating change as a people.
Mansfield, who identifies as a progressive, said this election cycle was devastating due to fears that progress made under President Barak Obama’s eight years will be undone by the new administration through the help of a congressional majority. However, Mansfield said the march was positive and uplifting.
“There’s a sense of hope, and hearing that millions around the globe stand against the same political injustices you do is really inspiring,” Mansfield said.
Mansfield said the “#notmypresident” days are transitioning into a time of more organized political action.