This past Saturday, 1000 protestors marched from Place Joffre to Trocadero for Paris Against Trump. We joined thousands of people worldwide who won’t sit quietly as white supremacism, corruption and fascism take over America. While Drumpf supporters are calling these rallies undemocratic—the whiny cries of baby losers—they’re forgetting the First Amendment guarantees freedom of speech, press, religion and assembly. Oddly, several French naysayers said we expats shouldn’t be protesting an American election on French soil. Is this not the country of les manifs and les grèves? Also, we hope it serves as a warning to France that after Brexit and Trump, Le Pen is a definite—and frightening—possibility.
Despite (or because of) all this, we gathered and marched and shouted and sang. It was a beautiful day for it. Though we are all heartbroken over what’s been happening since the election two weeks ago, we were smiling and happy to find ourselves among other people who are as passionate about progress, inclusion and freedom. We saw IRL friends, people we only know through Facebook and some of our Pantsuit Nation French chapter leaders. There were lots of hugs.
It was my first protest ever and I brought along Little D, who’d colored her own “Dump Trump” sign. She was pleased to see other Dump Trumpers and especially loved the chant, “Hey Hey Ho Ho, Donald Trump has got to go!” It was heartening to see other kids there, too. (Especially the “In your guts, you know he’s nuts” girl.)
I’ve never felt so politically engaged before. Whether it’s age, being a mother or having to witness the most egregious person ever ascend to the office of POTUS (while losing the popular vote by 2 million), this is not a time to stay on the sidelines. Here are some concrete things to do, which we’ll be updating as this horror show of American democracy plays out.
Don’t stay silent. Never normalize. And remember there are 2 million more of us. We just need to work together. Love still trumps hate!
Photos by Maggie Kim