High school walkouts, protests against Trump enter second week

Anti-Trump protests in the United States continued into their seventh day on Tuesday, including further walkouts at high schools and protests at campuses in cities throughout the US.

The protests are motivated by a broad hostility to the racism and bigotry of Trump, concern over the right-wing policies he is pledged to implement and opposition to plans to deport millions of undocumented immigrants. They follow the announcement over the weekend that Trump was appointing as his “chief strategist” Stephen Bannon, the head of Breitbart News who has direct ties to fascistic and white nationalist organizations.

The sentiment of the protesters stands in sharp contrast to the response of leading Democrats to the election of Trump. In a press conference on Monday, President Barack Obama praised his “cordial discussion” with Trump and called on Americans to “reconcile themselves” with a Trump presidency. (See, “Obama defends Trump at White House press conference”)

In Washington D.C., more than 2,000 high school and middle school students left class Tuesday afternoon and marched from one of Trump’s hotels to the US Capitol and the Supreme Court. The protest was initiated by students at the Woodrow Wilson Senior High School, the largest comprehensive public high school in the nation’s capital. Students from others schools joined in.

The principal of Wilson High, Kimberly Martin, released a statement saying that “school or district administrators were not involved in or consulted with during the planning of this event and students are expected to be in school throughout the day”

In nearby Beltsville, Maryland, students walked out of High Point High School and blocked area roads for about half an hour.

In New York City, several hundred high school and college students marched down Fifth Avenue in the afternoon. Among the slogans chanted were, “Education not deportation” and “We reject the president-elect.”

Across the country in Northern California, about 200 high school students walked out of class at 1:50 pm and staged a demonstration in Palo Alto. Several hundred college students at Stanford University, located in Palo Alto, also walked out of class at noon to participate in a demonstration against Trump.

Protests were also organized at various college campuses throughout the country as part of a “say no to Trump” national day of action. A similar nationally coordinated series of protests is scheduled for today.

In Chicago, Illinois, several hundred students walked out of classes at both the University of Illinois at Chicago, a public university, and the University of Chicago, a private university.

The protests on Tuesday followed a series of high school walkouts on Monday, including 800 students at Montgomery Blair High School in Silver Spring, Maryland; 5,000 students at several high schools in the region in and around Seattle, Washington; more than 1,000 students in Los Angeles, California; and hundreds of students in Denver, Colorado.