‘Not My Presidents Day' Rallies Draw Crowds Across US

President Trump didn't address the rallies, but he did tweet "HAPPY PRESIDENTS DAY - MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!"

Presidents Day means a day off for many across the United States, and hundreds of people in cities from New York to Los Angeles were using it to send a message to the current occupant of the White House. 

"Not My Presidents Day" rallies were being held in at least a dozen cities Monday, continuing a weekend of demonstrations aimed at speaking out against President Donald Trump's policies and actions.

The events on the federal holiday didn't draw nearly as many people as the million-plus who thronged the streets following the Republican president's inauguration a month earlier, but the message was similar.

Thousands of flag-waving demonstrators gathered in Manhattan, some near Central Park and others outside of the Trump International Hotel. Many in the crowd chanted "No ban, no wall. The Trump regime has got to fall." They held aloft signs saying "Uphold the Constitution Now" and "Impeach the Liar."

In Chicago, several hundred rallied across the river from the Trump Tower, shouting "Hey, hey, ho, ho, Donald Trump has got to go." 

Rebecca Wolfram of Chicago, who's in her 60s, said concerns about climate change and immigrant rights under Trump prompted her to start attending rallies.

"I'm trying to demonstrate as much as possible until I figure out what else to do," said Wolfram, who held a sign that said "Old white ladies are really displeased."

A rally in downtown Los Angeles also drew thousands. Demonstrators there called attention to Trump's crackdown on immigration and his party's response to climate change and the environment. Organizers said they chose to rally on the holiday as a way to honor past presidents by exercising their constitutional right to assemble and peacefully protest.

Several hundred demonstrated in Washington, D.C. Dozens gathered around the fountain in Dupont Circle chanting "Dump Trump" and "Love, not hate: That's what makes America great."

In downtown Miami, protesters chanted, "Show me what democracy looks like!"

Demonstrators in Philadelphia gathered at the Thomas Paine Plaza to march through the city. Guest speakers addressed the crowd about new policies under President Trump.

Dozens marched through midtown Atlanta for a rally named with a Georgia flavor: "ImPEACH NOW! (Not My) President's Day March." NBC affiliate WXIA reported that the march stretched five miles. 

Hundreds of protesters chanting "This is what democracy looks like" marched through Salt Lake City.

The Salt Lake Tribune reports that the crowd marched to push back against Trump and his administration's stance on such issues as the environment, immigration, free speech and Russia.

Some people raised signs that said "Not My President," while others held up a large American flag. Protester Reg Brookings warned the crowd that Trump is trying to divide the country by making such groups as immigrants the enemy.

A small but unruly group of protesters faced off with police in downtown Portland, Oregon.

The Oregonian/OregonLive reports the police confronted the crowd in front of the Edith Green-Wendell Wyatt Federal Building. Police took some people into custody.

Hundreds of Trump opponents and supporters turned out in Rapid City, South Dakota. 

A larger anti-Trump faction stood on a street corner as part of a "Not My President" protest, similar to other demonstrations being held across the country. A group supporting the president lined up on a different corner at the same intersection.

Earlier in the long weekend, demonstrators nationwide had rallied against Immigrations and Customs Enforcement raids, while New York City held a rally in support of Muslim Americans and scientists rallied in Boston urging Trump to recognize climate change and tackle environmental issues.

With five straight days of rallies and demonstrations, and more planned for future weeks, some activists are warning of potential "resistance fatigue." As NBC News reports, the "trendiness" of talk about "resistance fatigue" can be traced to a Medium essay published in January by Google engineer Yonatan Zunger, who wondered if tiring out Americans was the motivation behind Trump's nearly nonstop battery of executive orders. 

"It wouldn't surprise me if the goal is to create 'resistance fatigue,' to get Americans to the point where they're more likely to say, 'Oh, another protest? Don't you guys ever stop?' relatively quickly," wrote Zunger. 

That fatigue doesn't appear to have set in yet; still, some movement leaders are preemptively urging demonstrators to manage their energy and get enough sleep, among other things.

"This work is exhausting," Linda Sarsour, Executive Director of the Arab American Association of New York and one of four national organizers of the January 21 Women's March, told NBC News, and "under this administration it's proving difficult to take care of our physical and emotional well being."

"But we must," Sarsour added, "Because this is not a sprint, it's a marathon."

Sarsour has used Twitter to remind her 173,000 followers to take care of themselves and "EAT, DRINK WATER."

Trump was at his Florida estate, Mar-a-Lago, on Monday, from where he announced that he'd tapped Army Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster to fill the role of National Security Adviser, which the resignation of Michael Flynn left vacant.

He didn't address the rallies, but did tweet "HAPPY PRESIDENTS DAY - MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!" along with another tweet reiterating his claim that Sweden is being hurt by immigration. It is based on a Fox News report and refuted by many in the nation.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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