A day after Donald Trump was sworn into office, approximately 1,500 San Antonio citizens assembled to “March Against Hate” at city hall.
Positioned in the front of the “From SA to DC, March against Hate,” was a white-haired elderly woman, in a wheelchair, gripping a sign stating “Not My President.”
The peaceful march was sparked by a small group of women.
“First it was as small as five people,” peacemaker and organizer Marisa Gonzalez said. “Then it grew to like 10 – 20 people to help organize. . . mostly women from the Women’s International Day March.”
The diverse group of marchers had personal reasons for participating such as state-wide funding cuts to Planned Parenthood, LGBT rights, climate change, Muslim rights, local politics, voting and several other issues.
Despite that, marchers had one common goal: equality.
Since 2007, San Antonio has required a permit to march, however, that did not thwart San Antonio citizens from marching.
“San Antonio is our city,” Raquel Torres shouted on the steps of city hall. “These are our streets.”
The march kicked off with a rally at San Antonio’s City Hall where women, men, children and elderly all gathered with signs that illustrated diverse set of social issues.
“We must love and protect each other,” Barbie Hurtado shouted as the sea of marchers echoed her. “It is our duty to fight for freedom. It is our duty to win. We have nothing to lose but our chains. Let’s go!”
The 1.6 mile march commenced at city hall and maneuvered to the heart of the Westside at Estela’s Mexican restaurant.
San Antonio Police Department (SAPD) and peacekeepers guided the march for safety reasons.
“I’m here because I have granddaughters and I have a daughter who was able to marry the woman she loves for the first time in years,” Edgar Pace, who was dressed up as Uncle Sam said.
The march swayed spectators to join as it progressed.
“Women’s rights, equal rights,” chants reverberated for the entire march as well as dozens of others. “Wake up, rise, the resistance is on its way, get involved, register and vote!”
The peaceful protest outlasted the hazing sun as well as citizens with opposing views.
“Trump is your president,” an unidentified gentlemen said to the marchers as he walked to his Ford Explorer.
Passengers in the gentleman’s SUV used their cellphones to film and mock the marchers but SAPD diffused the situation before it escalated.
At the conclusion of the march, many participants felt “empowered” and “hopeful” for San Antonio moving forward.
“I feel really empowered that there are so many people in this community even though we are in this huge Republican state that we are all fighting for the same cause,” Ha Lam said.