Hundreds of protester gathered at Hollywood and Highland, the site of the Trump Hollywood Star, to rally and march against the Fascist Trump/Pence regime. Fascist thugs came to contest the march, to try to intimidate and silence protesters, and to “defend” the Trump Star. They were not successful. People gathered for two rallies and marched through the street, shutting down Hollywood Blvd., powerfully demanding the Trump/Pence Regime MUST GO!
At rallies before and after the march, a broad range of speakers drove home why the Trump/Pence regime must be driven from power. Isabel Cardenas (Salvadoran-American activist and co-initiator of Refuse Fascism), GrayWolf (assistant director of Southern California Chapter of AIM), Alex Sanchez (Defend Movement), Crystal Keshawarz (Muslim-American activist), Reverend Frank Alton (Cathedral Center of St. Paul), Ernestine Henning (supervisor [ret.] AME church), Josiah Gonzalez (California Freedom Coalition), Tala Deloria (spokesperson for the Revolution Club Los Angeles), Perry Hoberman (representing for Refuse Fascism Los Angeles), and Steve Gregoropoulos (musician) spoke, and one sang, exposing the crimes of the Trump/Pence regime and the urgency of taking to the streets to demand this fascist regime be ousted.
Over 400 protesters came out into the streets to express their outrage. While numerous organizations were represented, the overwhelming majority of people were individuals—not under any banner, but indignant at the regime and the direction of the country. Representatives from the LGBTQ community, science lovers and teachers, members of labor unions, members of religious organizations, members of the American Indian Movement, Aztec dancers, students and youth, families, elderly people, homeless people, LGBTQ individuals, Black and Brown people, punks, rappers, and artists turned out. About 18 different news and press organizations came to cover the event.
People came from all over California, and people from all over the world were represented. Lots of people came out because they saw NO! posters across the city, saw the event on Facebook, heard about it on Pacifica Radio, or received a phone call from Refuse Fascism. Students from a liberal arts college in Hollywood saw the poster for the July 15 protest, snapped a picture of it, and sent it to their friends who came to the protest. People came from East LA, San Fernando Valley, San Gabriel Valley, Antelope Valley, Joshua Tree, and San Clemente. People from Canada, Australia, South Korea, and different African countries bought NO! T-shirts and donated. Someone from Australia said, “This is really great, do you think that even though we are from Australia that we could participate and be involved there?” Tourists from Germany, a whole family, read the panels that indict the outrages of the Trump/Pence regime. The mother explained to her daughter in German and in English about the Trump/Pence attacks on women’s rights, pointing to the Refuse Fascism panel that powerfully describes this. A volunteer for Refuse Fascism said to them, “Trump is like Hitler,” and they said, “Yes, we agree.” This family joined the protest and was moved by it all.
About 80 fascists came to disrupt the rally and march. They assaulted two individuals, and harassed and attempted to intimidate many others. They tried to disrupt the chants, shove cameras and megaphones in people’s faces, and rip up posters and materials. Some spectators were indifferent and stayed on the sidelines, while others, once they understood what the rally was about, stood up and confronted the fascists and didn’t allow them to intimidate and disrupt the rally. Some people asked about the banner of the Portland Heroes—the two men who were killed and one who was injured by a white-supremacist neo-Nazi Trump supporter when they stopped him from harassing a young woman wearing a hijab and her Black friend. After hearing about the courageous action taken by these heroes, these people summoned their courage and joined the march. As hard as the fascists tried they were not able to shut us down. There was a moment where they were chanting “USA, USA, USA” the crowd responded with “HUMANITY FIRST, HUMANITY FIRST” and this made the fascists turn strikingly silent and the moment had a very profound effect on everyone involved.