The results of the election has set off a huge upset amongst the millennial demographic, causing an outbreak of riots and protests on many college campuses and cities across the nation. Universities located in our nation’s capital, Washington D.C., may have heard the loudest cry from heartbroken college students, and with the inauguration coming up, there are planned disturbances already in the works.
After it was announced that Donald Trump had won the presidential election, many people decided to take action and exercise one of their first amendment rights: the right to protest. There were many different protests against Trump that occurred across the country, and big cities like New York and DC took the spotlight for a few days, with the slogan “Not My President” washing over protesters’ signs, shirts and social media posts.
In the political heart of America, many Washington D.C. college students witnessed the protests happen right on campus after the election had happened.
“After the election there was a really dark moment on campus,” says Taylor Green, a freshman attending Georgetown University in D.C., “You would look around and everybody was just upset.”
There were dangerous instances and behavior exhibited by students that occurred on campuses such as American University and George Washington University. Self proclaimed left-wing liberal and American University freshman Bailey Boyer recalls, “[There was] a protest in the center of campus where students burned an American flag.” Students at George Washington University “Climbed the trees of the White House like animals as the announcement of Trump as the president elect was stated,” says GWU freshman and self-identified moderate Republican Rachel Milia.
Taylor Green also mentioned that, “Even though Georgetown is considered to be a liberal institution, there are still biased incidents. For example, after the election an African American woman was wearing a scarf on her head and was pushed down.” Whether or not this was truly connected to the election results is up for interpretation, but Green notes that, “This choice is impacting people even in more comfortable settings.”
Professors even went as far as canceling class and allowed students to not show up in order to cope with the reality of the election results.
With the inauguration coming up quickly, Washington D.C. students are preparing for the worst as far as protests and student behavior goes. Some schools are reportedly canceling classes for the day of the inauguration. Students are expecting to see similar behavior from their colleagues to what they saw after the election during the days surrounding and the day of the inauguration. Rachel Milia mentions that:
“Many friends [she has] spoken to are willing to do crazy things such as jump in front of cars and possibly get hurt in order to halt Trump’s inauguration.”
While many students are concerned for their safety during the days leading up to the inauguration, such as Green who “will be on high alert,” others like Robert Wines, self proclaimed conservative and freshman at American University are not as concerned:
“I do not fear for my safety, for I am choosing to remain vigilant and non-confrontational during this time.”
With the inauguration of president elect Donald Trump less than two weeks away, there is no telling what may happen amongst the large demographic of upset and terrified citizens. College students all over the country may make an effort to speak out along with the students in D.C. Although violence may take place during various protests, every student has the right to speak out about their beliefs, it is just a matter of how they choose to deliver their message. As Rachel Milia explains it, “Part of living in DC is being involved in the chaos of the politics…passion is expected for one’s beliefs.”
Lead Image Credit: Steven Contreras via Instagram