Thousands of protestors unhappy with the recent presidential election results marched through downtown Miami on Friday night, blocking traffic and chanting in chorus.
“Not my president,” “We reject the president-elect,” they chanted. “The pussy grabs back,” a reference to president-elect Donald Trump’s vulgar words on a leaked Access Hollywood tape.
The protest was organized through Facebook. Over 3,000 people on the event’s page indicated they were planning to attend.
Similar protests erupted across the country since Trump won the election Wednesday morning, despite losing the popular vote to Hillary Clinton.
Participants met at Bayfront Park before marching through the streets of downtown, at one point blocking traffic on both sides of the MacArthur Causeway.
As they overtook the causeway, they began chanting.
“A people united will never be divided,” the crowd said.
A number of drivers who had their routes interrupted, honked their car horns and raised their fists in solidarity with the protestors.
Among them was Xavier Dieuseul, a taxi driver who stepped out of his cab to record the commotion.
“If I was not a driver, I would be there with them, too,” he said.
Dieuseul said he immigrated from the U.S. 25 years ago.
“I cannot accept it,” Dieuseul said. “How could they elect that? I don’t know how come.”
Not everyone in the crowd supported the protest.
Robert Sullivan stood near the entrance to Bayfront Park holding a pro-Trump sign. He said he came out because he disagrees with the “Not my president” hashtag that many social media users are adding to their posts.
“There’s a lot of crybabies out there,” Sullivan said. “We need to move forward and do it together. This is divisive.”
Most, however, felt differently. Some said they hoped the discontentment across the nation would change the election results.
Richard Murphy held a sign that said, “Stop b******* and start a revolution.”
Murphy said the revolution he was asking for is one for love and justice. He said he hoped the Electoral College would “search their souls” and give the presidency to Clinton. If that didn’t happen, he said, the protests would continue.
“The message here and all around the United States is: Mr. Trump, we and the world are watching,” Murphy said. “The first time you step out of line, we are not going to be silent. We’re gonna stand up, we’re gonna fight, we’re gonna fight, we’re gonna fight.”
Jennifer Cappellini, an immigrant from Canada, echoed Murphy’s remarks.
“It’s unacceptable that our votes don’t count,” Cappellini said, referring to Clinton winning the popular vote but losing the Electoral College. “I can’t imagine a world where Donald Trump is our president.”
Cappellini also said she believed Trump would eventually be impeached, but she thought citizens needed to speak out against him in the meantime.
Some people within the protest were angry with the country’s two-party system.
Among this group was Anik B., a student who did not want to be identified with his last name.
Anik held up a sign that said “The Democratic Party won’t save you.” He said that he felt the Democratic Party was responsible for Trump being elected.
“There is no qualitative difference between the Democratic Party and the Republican Party,” Anik said. “Both parties create the economic situations that create the desperation that drives working-class people to support fascism.”
Anik said he voted for Jill Stein in the election because he could not support Clinton after the NATO bombing of Yugoslavia during her husband’s presidency.
“I cannot vote for Hillary Clinton because I cannot vote for the destruction of my own people,” he said. “I know what Donald Trump represents, but there’s no qualitative difference between the two.”
Anik said he was marching because he wanted to make the statement that he didn’t support Trump, but he also wanted to discourage people from rejoining the Democratic Party due to their anger with the current situation.
“I want to tell people that you need to not be fooled again like you were so many times before,” he said. “You need to think of an alternative.”
The crowd remained peaceful throughout the night, though police officers in riot gear stood to the side of the protest and stopped traffic as the protestors moved between cars.
Several people within the crowd warned others not to get too close to the police cars, saying no one was going to get arrested.
The protestors held a banner at the front of the crowd that said “Dump Trump, no hate in FL.”
Photos by Nyamekye Daniel, South Florida News Service