WILMINGTON – Protesters and supporters of Donald Trump gathered behind metal barricades in a relatively civil protest outside the Republican presidential nominee’s rally at UNC-Wilmington’s Trask Coliseum Tuesday.
As Trump was giving his speech to supporters inside Trask, the road just outside the building was a divided front, as people from both sides chanted, exchanged banter and expressed their anger at the opposing candidate. All endured the summer heat for their cause.
Protesters were asked to remain on the opposite side of the road, while Trump supporters were closest to the coliseum. But according to police on scene, just a few of the protesters got out of line, and crossed the roadway to the other side in anger. There was no signs of handcuffs during the protest.
Most of the protesters outside — men, women and children of all ages — did remain on their designated side of the roadway and gathered in the hours leading up to the rally and after.
“[My daughter] is a U.S. Citizen but she has brown skin. And I’m worried about the divisive language that Donald Trump has used.”
Chris Meek, a local supporter of Democratic Presidential Candidate Hillary Clinton said he was outside the barricade protesting since 11 a.m. Tuesday.
“These are all my friends,” Meek said pointing to the crowd around him. “We’re all out here pretty much for the same reason.”
Meek said he has been following the campaign since the very beginning, and showed up outside at Trump’s rally with a goal to “demonstrate the ignorance of the Trump campaign.”
“We already know that America is great,” Meek said. “We don’t need to be told it needs to be made great again.”
Meek said he believes America was made in the image of people from all different races, countries and economic backgrounds, not just the “one-percent.”
“Trump does not know how the other 99-percent live. He’s never lived it. Therefore I’m here to oppose Donald Trump,” Meek added.
Beth Bacheldor arrived at the protest barricade in front of the coliseum about 15 minutes before Meeks. She said she is also a supporter of Clinton. And while she is long-time democrat, she arrived in protest for her daughter who was adopted from Guatemala.
“[My daughter] is a U.S. Citizen but she has brown skin. And I’m worried about the divisive language that Donald Trump has used. I’m worried about the hateful things that he’s said about immigrants, illegal or not. And I’m really worried about the kind of United States we will have if he we were to get the presidency,” Bacheldor said.
Bacheldor said she is worried about her daughter having to pull out paperwork to show she is a citizen if Trump were to get elected.
“There is no way to deport 11 million without racial profiling,” Bacheldor said. “And my daughter is a beautiful brown girl. And that’s why I’m here.”
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