MIAMI (WSVN) - Thousands of people across the country took the day to rally against President Donald Trump in “Not My Presidents Day” protests, Monday.
Since President’s Day is a federal holiday and Congress is in recess, a group of South Florida residents planned a rally in Downtown Miami, while Florida representatives are back in town for the long holiday weekend.
By noon, more than two dozen protesters were rallying with signs and banners at the Torch of Friendship, located at 301 Biscayne Boulevard. The rally took place from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
According to a description written on the event’s Facebook page, “Mr. Trump is literally our President, but figuratively, he has attacked every value we embody and does not represent our interests.”
The group added, “On February 20th, we will honor previous presidents by exercising our constitutional right to assemble and peacefully protest everything Donald Trump stands for.”
Protesters said they want to honor previous presidents on this holiday by exercising their constitutional right to gather peacefully and protest.
Those who gathered in Downtown Miami were far from the only ones who came together across the country. Dozens also protested in Philadelphia, Atlanta, Charlotte, Chicago and Los Angeles.
The proposed wall along the U.S.-Mexico border and the travel ban are just a few of several issues that local protesters are gathering for.
“The ban on people coming from other countries, that is just plain racist,” said protester Lorenzo Canizares. “Just plain an attack on people because of their religion and because of their nationality.”
Demonstrators at the rally were united by the same cause. “I feel a moral obligation to try to stand up and fight back,” said protester Daniel Fogel.
Yet, each protester was inspired to participate for a variety of personal and political reasons, including universal health care and immigration.
“I’m concerned about ‘Obamacare’ being repealed. They have no clue what they’re going to replace it with, and a lot of people are going to be without health insurance,” explained protester Sharon Wilkes as she held back tears. “My brothers and sisters, Muslims and Mexicans, need to stay, and that’s important to me and my kids, and that’s why I’m here.”
“Services should be available to everybody as a human right,” said protester Peter Bronson. “And the way the country is going, the rights are going to be sold to the highest bidder, and that’s one reason why I’m out here. I also feel that, based on his utterances, Trump is not my president.”
Bronson added, “[Trump’s] trying to eliminate the free press in this country, and, even John McCain spoke out against the danger of that.”
Organizers had expected more demonstrators to attend the rally as the event went on into the early hours of the afternoon. However, they were pleased with the results, and they said that changing one mind is enough. They also told 7News they plan to gather again at this location.
“I think it’s important for people to get out on the streets so our message gets across on a large scale all over the country,” explained Bronson.
Organizers said they picked this specific location along Biscayne Boulevard since it is an area with heavy motor vehicle and pedestrian traffic.
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