In towns and cities across Britain protesters gathered to oppose Donald Trump tonight, Friday, as the racist, sexist billionaire was inaugurated US president.
The events were called by local Stand Up To Racism (SUTR) groups and others including Campaign Against Climate Change, Abortion Rights and Stop the War. They came alongside a demonstration at the US embassy in London.
Over 500 people marched on the US consulate in Edinburgh—including a contingent of workers from Edinburgh College where the EIS-Fela teaching union just affiliated to SUTR.
There were lots of university students including LGBT+ groups. Up to 700 people rallied in central Glasgow.
Over 500 people joined the rally in Manchester, including anti-fracking campaigners, Muslim activists against Prevent, CND, Palestine Solidarity Campaign, LGBT+ activists and many others who hate what Trump represents.
Student Grace said, “It’s unacceptable that he’s president after all he’s said and done, he’s vile. How can a president enforce the law if he says Mexicans are rapists?
“It shows that it isn’t enough if the law says people are equal.”
Raul came to Britain from Spain six months ago. He said, “We’ve met Donald Trumps in the past, not just in America but across the world.
“We have to fight him like our parents and grandparents did. He’s just the top of a reactionary ideology against human rights.
“He wants us, working class people, to think Muslims or black people are the enemy – not people like him.”
In Bristol up to 400 protesters caused gridlock by taking to the streets and stopping traffic.
They marched on Bridewell police station in anger at the recent tasering of 63 year old Judah Abundi—one of the cops’ own race relations advisers.
People looked on from their flats as protesters with a burning Trump effigy marched chanting “No justice, no peace, no racist police”.
Around 150 people protested in Cardiff, with US student Alex and councillor Ali Ahmed leading the destruction of a giant Trump head piñata.
Students from the College of Music and Drama held umbrellas spelling out “Love trumps hate”. SUTR campaigners gave out hundreds of leaflets for the national demonstration on Saturday 18 March.
There were over 200 in Norwich and 300 in Newcastle, over 60 in Huddersfield and up to 100 in Nottingham.
The 50 protesters in Portsmouth’s Guildhall Square tore down a “wall of shame” representing Trump and his values.
But at an indoor event in Chesterfield campaigners built a “wall of solidarity” and sang a version of Pink Floyd’s song “Another Brick in the Wall”.
Around 70 people gathered in central Brighton for a protest called by SUTR and the People’s Assembly.
Over 50 people protested against Trump in York. Called by SUTR, the demonstration was joined by anti-war activists and anti-frackers.
There were also evening protests in places including Birmingham, Bradford, Lancaster, Leeds, Liverpool, Oxford, Sheffield, Southampton and Swansea.
Campaigners rallied in Leeds at lunchtime and were set to gather in Cambridge on Saturday.
Other events took place earlier in the day including “Bridges not walls” banner drops across Britain.
Dorset Socialists participated in the organisation of a banner drop over the A35 at Dorchester on Thursday night.
And tens of thousands were expected to join Women’s Marches on Saturday in solidarity with one in the US.
As well as London, others were planned elsewhere including Leeds and the Shipley constituency of Tory MP and “men’s rights” supporter Phillip Davies.
The demonstrations in Britain are part of a global day of protest—including mass turnouts in the US itself.
They can help build a big turnout on the SUTR national demonstrations on Saturday 18 March, and take on the racism that is poisoning society here as well.
Reporting by Sarah in Manchester, Roland Ravenhill, James Eaden, Tim Nicholls, Chris Fuller, Joe Redmond, Jon Woods, Katherine West, Martin Jones, Richard Buckwell
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