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Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Students protest President-elect Donald Trump

Students form a group hug in Red Square following the result of the 2016 election on Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016. // Photo by Morgan Stilp-Allen
Students form a group hug in Red Square following the result of the 2016 election on Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016. // Photo by Morgan Stilp-Allen

By Alex Halverson

Following the rain-soaked early morning of a post election day hangover, protesters against President-elect Donald Trump converged in Red Square to express anger of the election results and preach hate over love.

Protests led by Western students included homemade signs, chants, YG and Nipsey Hussle’s “F— Donald Trump” playing on speakers, a congregation in the fountain and a march to downtown and back.

Signs protesters held included messages such as  “Never Stop Caring,” “Not My President,” “Love Trumps Hate” and “America Was Never Great.”

While chants of “F— Trump,” chorused throughout the morning, the protest remained peaceful in its angst as protesters were constantly joined by fellow students writing messages of solidarity.

“I am terrified. We do not have four years to waste in preventing the environmental catastrophes in the works.”

Graduate student Rose Engelfried

Junior Jonah Eastern was a bystander of the protest.

“They’re just expressing their rights,” Eastern said. “I think it’s helpful. As long as it’s peaceful, which it is.”

Among the protesters was graduate student Rose Engelfried, who was primarily protesting Trump’s stance on climate change rather than the more common social issue protest.

“I am terrified,” Engelfried said. “We do not have four years to waste in preventing the environmental catastrophes in the works.”

Engelfried expanded on her climate worries while not discounting other protests.

Junior Sarah Gunderson responds to Trump's election Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016, in Red Square. Gunderson was one of the first students to protest the election results in Red Square. // Photo by Morgan Stilp-Allen
Junior Sarah Gunderson responds to Trump’s election Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016, in Red Square. Gunderson was one of the first students to protest the election results in Red Square. // Photo by Morgan Stilp-Allen

“Everything going on in this rally is so vitally important,” Engelfried said. “But Trump has said he’s not going to honor the Paris climate agreement, he is not going to be looking at renewable energy. I don’t know if he’s in denial, or if he just wants to get rich, or what, but the idea that fossil fuels are not an unlimited resource does not get through his skull.”

Social justice issues were the focus of the protest, an issue Trump has been scrutinized for continuously by his opponents throughout his campaign.

“It’s not even him, but he makes a good centerpiece for hate and divisiveness that exists in this country,” senior Catarina Harrington said.

The protest ended around 4:15 p.m. after protesters returned to campus following the scheduled noon to 3 p.m. protest in Red Square and the spontaneous march through downtown.

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