By Penny Starr
The Border Network for Human Rights and the Women’s March El Paso are protesting President Donald Trump’s trip to El Paso where he is visiting in the wake of a mass shooting on Saturday.
“City residents and lawmakers are planning to protest the trip with a simple message: hate is not welcome,” the Common Dreams website reported.
The Washington Post reported on the protest, which the media outlet said is to, “express their discontent with a president whose anti-immigrant rhetoric was echoed by a gunman who killed 22 people in El Paso:”
The grief and sorrow in Dayton, Ohio, and El Paso have begun to give way to anger and frustration in advance of President Trump’s planned visits Wednesday, with local leaders and residents increasingly vocal in their assertions that presidential condolences, thoughts and prayers will not be enough.
People are signing petitions, planning protests and, in Dayton, organizing a demonstration featuring an inflated “Baby Trump” to express their discontent with a president whose anti-immigrant rhetoric was echoed by a gunman who killed 22 people in El Paso. And while the motive of the man who killed nine people in Dayton remains unclear, Trump’s silence on the issue of guns has been criticized by local officials who want action to prevent future massacres.
A Facebook page about the protest states:
El Paso was targeted for the horrific shooting because we are a welcoming city that advocates for immigrant families. We were targeted for fighting against the dehumanization of our immigrant brothers and sisters, for pushing back against the criminalization of our border and for denouncing President Trump’s attempts to paint our communities as something they’re not. President Trump is not welcome in El Paso and his narrative around immigrants and Central Americans should not be welcome anywhere.
Rep. Veronica Escobar (D-TX), who represents El Paso, also has said Trump is not welcome.
“From my perspective, he is not welcome here,” Escobar said. “He should not come here while we are in mourning.”
“I would encourage the president’s staff members to have him do a little self-reflection. I would encourage them to show him his own words and his actions at the rallies,” Escobar said.
Escobar also declined Trump’s invitation to join the presidential delegation.
“I declined the invitation because I refuse to be an accessory to his visit,” Escobar tweeted“I refuse to join without a dialogue about the pain his racist and hateful words & actions have caused our community and country.”