08:15 GMT +321 May 2019
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    People protest outside the Trump Plaza Hotel against the executive orders issued by US President Donald Trump, February 4, 2017 in West Palm Beach, Florida

    Thousands of Americans Turn Holiday Into 'Not My Presidents' Day' Protest

    © AFP 2019 / Antoni BELCHI
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    On the holiday originally dedicated to America's founding president, thousands of Americans once again rallied against the one they've got now, dubbing the day "Not My Presidents' Day."

    In New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, and, of course, Washington, DC, plus dozens of other cities, crowds of hundreds and thousands gathered to rebuke Donald Trump, the president of just one month who has managed to drive protesters into the streets every single weekend.

    "Donald Trump stands against the progress we have worked hard to enact," a statement on the Facebook page of the Los Angeles rally organizers' said. "He does not represent our interests. He was voted in by a minority of the American public but governs as if there's no resistance. But there is — and on February 20th, we will honor previous presidents by exercising our constitutional right to assemble and peacefully protest everything Donald Trump stands for."

    ​Thirteen thousand gathered in Columbus Circle outside the Trump Hotel to begin the protest in New York, according to reports. 

    "We want to show how displeased we are," Andy Frears, 47, told AM New York. "I think the constant presence has a cumulative effect."

    It was the fifth straight day of protests against Trump in New York, where the president has galvanized everyone from taxi drivers to Yemeni bodega workers into showing him how they feel.

    "I'm really concerned for where our country is headed," Sayief Leshaw, 22, told NBC in New York. "We've sold out to corporate interests, and Donald Trump's policies are downright offensive."

    Luis Llobera, his wife and seven-month-old son traveled from elsewhere in New York to attend the protest in New York City, Reuters reports.

    "We are not American citizens, but our son is," he said. "We want to make sure our son has a government that is right and good."

    Olga Lexell, one of the 20 or so people who helped organize the main protests in Los Angeles, Chicago, and New York, which drew the largest crowds, said that while these rallies didn't have a specific message — immigration, women's rights or other causes people have demonstrated for recently — the idea was to show Trump that there is indeed opposition in the country.

    "A lot of people are angry because he lost the popular vote and is ruling like somebody who won by a landslide," Lexell told KTLA in Los Angeles. Thousands joined her in the afternoon march

    Gayle Fleming, 69, was one of hundreds protesting in Washington. She said the demonstrations reminded her of those that rocked the country during the Vietnam War.

    "What I'm seeing, especially being as old as I am, is the amazing interest of people who have never been activists," she told NBC. "This does inspire us. It's the silver lining in the middle of all this horrible stuff."


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