Group of Protestors at Trump Rally Explain Why They Did It
As President Donald Trump's El Paso rally continues to cross all media platforms, we are discovering more stories about things that happened at that event. One of the underrated moments of the rally involved a group of protestors who were shown being dragged out of the venue but never interviewed or questions for their actions.
The group of protestors I am talking about are the group of mostly young women who were thrown out for revealing a banner that said, "No Bans/No Walls/NoCages - Free the #ElPaso9." As you can read in the Instagram post below, these protestors came with a plan to get the word out on the El Paso 9.
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Trump held a rally in El Paso tonight, so a few of us organized to disrupt to denounce militarization of the border and to stand in solidarity with the #ElPaso9, a group of asylum seekers who have been on hunger strike in ICE detention. It was awful having to be surrounded by MAGA shits all day, but it was worth it! • “For the last 40 days a group of Sikh asylum seekers from the Indian state of Punjab have been engaged in a hunger strike to protest their unjust detention and the deplorable conditions in ICE detention. In response, ICE agents have begun force feeding nine of the men via nasal tubes and IV. Those who are on strike have reported that the tubes are too large, causing nasal bleeding, wounds and lesions on their throats and nasal passages, and are having difficulty speaking and breathing. • On February 7, 2019, when officials attempted to put the tubes down their nostrils without allowing them to lie down, the asylum seekers resisted, resulting in ICE throwing them into solitary confinement. We are deeply concerned about their health, well-being, and safety. • We demand an immediate stop to the force feeding and inhumane conditions that they are currently detained in. Furthermore, we are calling for all of those currently in detention to be released, including the #ELPASO9.”
Now I have never heard of the El Paso 9 so of course, I attempted to find more information instead of blowing off their banner, which so many in that room did. According to the Houston Chronicle, Immigration and Customs Enforcement are accused of covering up a hunger strike in an El Paso ICE detention center, involving nine men seeking asylum, who are originally from Punjab, India. The article also points out that others seeking asylum in other detention centers along the border are also facing horrible treatment during their hunger strikes, when all they are asking for is proper treatment and a fair hearing for their asylum case.
During that rally, I realized the sea of red hats was intimidating. Being in the press pit made me feel like I had a target on my back the whole time. At one point, people would come up behind me and yell, "Fake News." Security would step in and tell them to step back but that was about the most security they had for the press pit, even though those speaking were pumping up the crowd to not trust the media.
As for the protestors in that rally, they took a big risk to have their voices heard. I may be one person who was looking for other messages and interactions at the rally, but I know if that message about the El Paso 9 got to me, it must have also attracted someone else to stop and take a second to look up facts; instead of believing everything said from a man in a suit.