Late last week, WHAT’S UP?! members found out the first Pennsylvania campaign office for GOP Presidential candidate Donald Trump was scheduled to open in Monroeville, PA, a predominantly white suburb east of the City of Pittsburgh. Saturday April 9th was the campaign’s kickoff for volunteers to show up and spread the word about the Presidential Candidate who has fanned the flames of racist hatred and violence to new heights during this 2016 election season.
WHAT’S UP?! members and friends sprung into action to give the first Trump office in PA a proper welcome. We wanted to show the campaign volunteers, and members of the larger Pittsburgh community that Trump and his hate speech are not welcome anywhere, and especially here in Western Pennsylvania!!
Despite being extremely cold, windy, and snowy, a diverse group of about 40 people showed up outside of the campaign headquarters in the Jonnet Building, located on the busy William Penn Highway. We led a spirited march with signs, banners, drums, and chants such as “Love trumps Hate! Get Out of Our State!” and “Sexist, Racist, Anti-Gay! Donald Trump, Go Away!” (See video and photos!)
As we held our signs next to the busy road, we received lots of honks in support of our messages like “Pennsylvania says NO to Hate”, “Deport Racism” and “Hate Speech Is Violence.” Random people from businesses nearby came over to join the demonstration. New connections were made in the community. Through local media coverage on KDKA and the Trib Daily Photo, we were able to spread the news of the action much further.
Given the fact that our group outnumbered the Trump supporters, we were able to slow down and interrupt the launching of the campaign for over an hour.
As Donald Trump hopes to win the Pennsylvania primary on Tuesday April 26th, we believe he is seeking to exploit and capitalize upon the racism and fear mongering that finds support among too many white people in Western PA. Our group of white, black, and brown Pittsburghers made it clear that any presence of Trump and his supporters will be met with opposition, disruption, and creative resistance.
For those who oppose Trump’s racist rhetoric, his xenophobic scapegoating, and his hate speech towards women, Muslims, disabled people and more, we ask you to join local efforts to stopping Trumpism in Pennsylvania. Check out the Pledge of Resistance. By signing on to the pledge we will strengthen our networks and stay updated on future actions in Western PA.
Love Trumps Hate!