On November 18 a group of around 300 people gathered on the west side of the Capitol building in downtown Sacramento to protest against Donald Trump and his cabinet full of white supremacists.
History tells us that Trump is not the first president to be a white supremacist. This is actually the rule instead of the exception for the United States. Just over a week after his election there has been an uptick in hate crimes across the nation not to mention a White Lives Matter rally of neo-Nazis in Austin, Texas. Mobilizing the masses to fight back against this rising tide of bigotry is important now more than ever.
A community member shared an original poem with the crowd before the march began.
“I will not surrender / My heart is open for all to see/ I do not know how to tone it down / I will take the fight tooth and nail / I will bleed / I will bleed my sorrow / I bleed my indignity/ I bleed out what could not stay / like a poison / I cannot keep all that poison in my heart/ we can not go back / to yesterday.”
The march began down L street with chants of “Trump says get back, we say fight back!”
As the march entered a tunnel near the K street Mall, chants of “No justice, no peace!” rang out as spectators in the tourist center of Old Sacramento began to notice and take out their phones. The march continued through the cobblestone streets of Old Sac until reaching the nearby Tower Bridge. The golden arches of the bridge are a symbol of Sacramento and act as a gateway connecting Sacramento to the neighboring Yolo County city of West Sacramento. The demonstrators held the bridge for around 30 minutes, hearing from community members and local activists before marching back to the capitol.
On its way back, the march stopped in front of two significant buildings. The first was an ICE building where organizers of the march pointed out the need to return to that location after Trump takes office and starts mass deportations. They stressed the need to fight back against these measures and to stand in solidarity with undocumented workers. Across the street was the Restaurant Association where the main opponents of raising the minimum wage have their headquarters. Both of these entities work within capitalism to keep workers oppressed and in precarious living situations.
The march then proceeded to chants of “Make America great again, stop the fascists, fight the Klan!” and “Trump and Bannon go hand in hand, down with the Nazis and the Ku Klux Klan!”
Occupying 10th street in front of the capitol, the march returned and heard one last round of speeches from the community. Recounting a march on campus they helped put together following the election of Donald Trump, Lehma, a sociology student from UC Davis said, “When they heard that students were marching they got up out of their seats and they came out of the halls. They recognized that the time is now. The time for students to act is now. It’s not later because Trump wants to shut us up. He wants to take away the Department of Education.”
They continued, “When you leave your university campus it doesn’t just end there. We have the power and those are our halls.”
S.T. Ruiz of the Party for Socialism and Liberation addressed the crowd saying, “What we should be talking about is not just getting rid of Donald Trump or Pence, it’s fighting for a new system. This system has failed us and that’s why people are coming into the streets. There were tens of thousands last week and there will be tens of thousands next week. On December 10th we are calling for a massive march through the streets of Sacramento. If we go into the schools, into the unions, into the community and we build unity, we can make a historic march in this city.”