Inauguration protests attract thousands in Bay Area
January 25, 2017
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Two-thousand peaceful protesters were armed with signs gathered at the Oakland City Hall at 7 a.m. on Friday to protest the inauguration of President Donald Trump.
Undeterred by the rain, marchers met to voice their dissent with Trump, who has made offensive comments about women, minorities, immigrants, the LGBTQ community and the disabled throughout his campaign.
The protesters walked up Telegraph Avenue to 27th Street and made their way back to Frank Ogawa Plaza around 1:30 p.m., according to the East Bay Express. Oakland’s inauguration protest was one of at least a dozen others organized in the Bay Area on Friday alone, according to ABC7 News.
Bay Area residents did not stop there. On Saturday, Oakland streets closed and BART added additional cars in preparation for the Women’s March, which aimed to “empower everyone who stands for human rights, civil liberties and social justice for all,” according to the Women’s March Bay Area website.
A sea of pink knitted hats — some handmade, others manufactured specifically for the occasion — became an unofficial trademark of the march. Affectionately referred to as “pussy hats” for the cat-like ear points on either side, women attempted to reclaim the derogatory term in response to Trump’s comments about grabbing women by their genitals.
A plethora of signs that bore messages such as, “Love not hate makes America great” and “One day a woman will be president” crowd-surfed, as men, women, babies and the elderly championed for human rights.
The march took place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and led protesters from Madison Park up Oak Street to Grand Avenue, following Lake Merritt and ending down Broadway at Frank Ogawa Plaza.
The event was mirrored in San Francisco later in the day, as well as nationwide and overseas, manifesting in 670 events with over 1 million participants, according to the Washington Post. A record 597,000 trips were recorded on Metro in Washington D.C. for the Women’s March, in comparison to only 368,000 on Inauguration Day, according to the Washington Post. News outlets have called it “the largest one-day protest in U.S. history.”
The East Bay Times projected a 28,000 person turn-out based on responses to the Oakland event’s Facebook page. The event drew an estimated 60,000 attendees in Oakland and resulted in no arrests, according to the Oakland Police Department.