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November 11, 2016

US: Protesters across nation march to protest Trump; some demonstrations turn violent

Police in Portland, Ore., used pepper spray and rubber projectiles against protesters early Friday after anti-Donald Trump demonstrations erupted in several big cities and on college campuses across the United States.

Police ordered protesters who gathered in Portland for a third night to disperse after a peaceful demonstration turned into what they called a riot, citing "extensive criminal and dangerous behavior." At least 26 people were arrested.

About 4,000 protesters assembled downtown late Thursday chanting “we reject the president-elect!” the Associated Press reported.

The protest was mostly peaceful until demonstrators met with an anarchist group, after which protesters vandalized buildings, kicked cars and knocked out power, KGW-TV reported.

Portland police said the crowd, which contained many people armed with bats, threw projectiles at officers.

"Love the fact that the small groups of protesters last night have passion for our great country. We will all come together and be proud! "Trump tweeted at about 6.15 a.m. ET Friday.

It was a change of tone for Trump, who weighed in on the protests Thursday evening, complaining that he took part in a "very open and successful presidential election" but now "professional protesters, incited by the media, are protesting. Very unfair!"

Meanwhile, demonstrations also took place in Columbus, Ohio, Wisconsin and Minneapolis, Minn. Thursday evening. Protests in Wisconsin's state capital of Madison and Milwaukee, the state's most populous city, drew some of the biggest crowds, with more than 1,000 demonstrators taking to streets in both cities.

In New York, for the second straight night, hundreds of protesters gathered near the iconic Trump Tower to express their anger over the election of the businessman.

The crowd was notably young. The organizers were not yet old enough to vote, but said that they wanted to inspire young people to voice their opinions and understand that they can shape the future.

"We've got to protest," said organizer Elijah Newman, 16, of Brooklyn, as he stood with hundreds of other Millennials in front of Trump Tower.

"It's not just Donald Trump — it's the system of education," he said. "New York City is like a megaphone to the entire world. It's important that we're protesting here because it will inspire and influence other people to start protesting."

In Los Angeles, protests continued on Thursday — though not as big as Wednesday — as organizers claimed they were saving their energy for the weekend, The Los Angeles Times reported. Hundreds marched onto a busy highway and caused a complete standstill late Wednesday night, prompting the Los Angeles Police Department to arrest several demonstrators. The protest was mostly peaceful, but some vandalized property, threw bottles and launched fireworks, the L.A. Times reported.

Meanwhile, dozens of students from Texas State University rallied on their campus against Trump.

Holding signs, some of which read “Make America Free Again” and “Tear Down the Fascist,” the students gathered on the quad of the campus in San Marcos, Tex., about 30 miles south of Austin. Some chanted, “What do we need? Love! When do we want it? Now!” Others argued with Trump supporters who waded into the crowd. The gathering appeared to be generally peaceful.

The afternoon rally came a day after fliers appeared in bathrooms across campus warning of pro-Trump "vigilante squads." The fliers had a picture of men clad in camouflage holding rifles and said the squads would “arrest and torture those deviant university leaders spouting off all this diversity garbage.” University police were investigating the source of the fliers.

Rudy Giuliani, a top Trump surrogate, described the thousands of anti-Trump protesters that have taken to the street as “a bunch of spoiled cry-babies."

"Calm down, things are not as bad as you think," Giuliani said of the protesters in a Fox & Friends interview Thursday

Text by USA Today
 

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