Hundreds of people opposed to messages espoused by President-elect Donald Trump gathered to protest his presidency in Kansas City.
Thousands of others across the country also protested in events that mostly were peaceful, with the glaring exception being a protest-related shooting in Portland, Ore., early Saturday morning.
In the shadow of a statue of Abraham Lincoln and his son Tad, a peaceful Kansas City crowd diverse in age, gender and race filled the pavement in front of City Hall on Saturday afternoon. Many protesters waved signs and chanted “Not my president.”
One after another, speakers took a megaphone in hand and begged others to make their voices heard. They complained about discrimination of women, racial minorities and gender variance.
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The common message was clear: “This election does not represent us,” said Darla Belflower of Independence.
“Don’t let a Trump presidency be normalized, speak up,” said Casey Williams, 15, of Raytown.
Casey said she joined the protest because “I could not let my voice go unheard. The feeling I experienced when Trump won the presidency was unlike anything I’ve ever felt before,” she said, placing a hand on her abdomen. “I have to speak out.”
Others shouted that protesting was just the first step and promised to organize and petition Congress to change the electoral college system that allowed Trump to win Tuesday’s election even though his opponent, Hillary R. Clinton, apparently won the popular vote.
Many said they had participated in other Trump protests in Kansas City this week. Eleanor Adams Harris, a 64-year-old retired businesswoman from Independence, said that on Friday she walked with protesters in a “Love Trumps Hate,” march from Liberty Memorial near Union Station to City Hall.
“I’m very concerned about our health insurance; we rely on Obamacare,” Adams Harris said. “I’m going to try and protest here or somewhere every day as long as vulnerable people are threatened.”
Demonstrations also were scheduled Saturday across the country, including in Las Vegas, Los Angeles, New York and Chicago.
Marches in Miami and Atlanta disrupted traffic. People gathered on Boston Common in a rally for peace and love. In New York City, hundreds attended what they called a "love rally" in Manhattan’s Washington Square Park.
The Associated Press reported that in Nashville, Tenn. on the Vanderbilt University campus, students gathered and sang civil rights songs while marching through campus and temporarily blocking traffic on the city’s streets.
But in Portland Saturday morning one person was shot by a man who had gotten into a confrontation with a protester. The wounded person, who suffered what police said was not life-threatening injuries was taken to the hospital for treatment. Police were looking for the shooter.
The shooting followed a night of rowdy protestin in the city where this week rallies opposing Trump erupted in violence with some protesters setting small fires, tossing rocks and using baseball bats to break the glass of businesses and cars parked at dealerships. The disruption led police to release pepper spray to move people out of the area. More than two dozen people were arrested.
A march in Tampa, Fla. led to a brief confrontation between protesters chanting “Dump Trump,” and a group of Marine Corps. members and supporters of President-elect Trump. Police formed a human barricade between the two groups to defuse the tension.
Organizers of the Kansas City protest said others will be planned for next week including one tentatively set for Thursday around the J.C. Nichols fountain at The Country Club Plaza