Protesters denounce Trump's first presidential NY home visit
Aug 15 2017 by Lorena Waters
"Racism is evil", the President said, and added that white supremacists who take part in violence are "criminals and thugs".
Shouting "Shame!, Shame! Shame!" anti-Trump protesters awaited the President as he returned to New York City Monday night for the first time since taking office.
Critics denounced Trump for waiting too long to address the bloodshed, and for initially faulting hatred and violence "on many sides," rather than singling out the white supremacists widely seen as instigating the melee.
After Trump was elected president, security around the tower ramped up dramatically.
These protests are ongoing and this post will be updated to reflect new developments.
"If this was a Muslim or a black crowd on Saturday, driving into a crowd and being that vile, then they would have had a military operation, they would have had a different response", another said.
"I came here because I'm terrified of what our country has become, the fact that white supremacist, nazis, anti-semites feel legitimized by our president", explained to AFP Lynn Gray, New York is 68 years old.
After staying at the Trump National Gold Club in Bedminster, New Jersey, over the weekend, the president flew to Washington, D.C., on Monday morning.
"It's New York City".
"Those are the people who got him elected", Graham said of the white supremacists.
Funneled south of 57th Street and north of 58th, demonstrators chanted and sang, waiting for Trump's arrival.
The primary political group present at Monday's protest, Resist Fascism, kept the crowd engaged with back-to-back guest speakers, who described the scene in Charlottesville as they had witnessed it. Eva Sahana, a Resist Fascist organizer, told The Daily Beast on Monday, "Right now [Trump] he has blood all over his hands".
In Manhattan, where Trump lived and worked, only about 10 percent of the 2016 vote went to him.
A 20-year-old man said to have harboured Nazi sympathies was arrested on charges of ploughing his vehicle into protesters opposing the white nationalists, killing 32-year-old paralegal Heather Heyer and injuring 19 people.
CNN reported that a small group of Trump supporters also gathered near the tower.
April Goehrke, a 33-year-old graduate student who lives in Manhattan, said she had been inspired to protest by the "events in Charlotte".
Trump did make an unscheduled statement early Monday afternoon condemning the weekend's violence. By 9:30, only a few dozen of the initial demonstrators remained, chanting on the sidewalk as they milled and chatted among themselves in the barricaded street. "We're gonna protect the rights to assemble and march and we're going to prosecute anybody to the fullest extent of the law that violates their ability to do so".
"If you're silent, you're part of hate speech", said Carlos Laureano, who had moved to NY from Puerto Rico two years ago.