Los Angeles, CA – More than 200 determined community members gathered at Mariachi Plaza in Boyle Heights, Jan. 20, to protest and march against Donald Trump. Pouring rain with cold winds were no match for the rage and determination of Boyle Heights.
“I came out to do security for this march because Trump’s campaign promises are extremely outrageous and dangerous. It gives a voice to right-wing white supremacists and elitists who can take matters into their own hands,” says trade union and Centro CSO member Luis Sifuentes.
Those present began by listening to militant speeches from students, undocumented immigrants and neighborhood groups. Chanting, “Say it loud, say it clear! Immigrants are welcome here!” and “Chicano! Power!” protesters marched with umbrellas and trailed a large long truck equipped with a sound system and banners.
Cal State LA and Latina student Sylvia Muñoz says, “This energy and momentum is the continuation of the work done by civil leaders of the past that still resonates with us today!”
The protest and march was organized and led by Centro CSO in Boyle Heights, and was joined by the Eastside Greens, Union Binacional de Ex-Braceros, the MORENA party, and Students for a Democratic Society in Pasadena Community College. Demands against the Trump agenda included: legalization not deportation; defend DACA; no to guest-worker programs, and no to U.S. wars and occupations.
Marching from Boyle Heights, the protesters made a quick stop at the Federal Building and another at the LAPD headquarters office. Protesters pointed out the LAPD kills more Chicanos in Boyle Heights than any other neighborhood of Los Angeles. Centro CSO members reminded the protesters that the demand for justice would continue against LAPD. Before going past LAPD headquarters protesters chanted, “Asesinos! Asesinos!” and “Jail killer cops!” The Boyle Heights contingent ended their march at City Hall to unite with the March Against Hate.
Longtime Chicano rights activist Carlos Montes says, “We needed to send a clear message to Donald Trump, that Boyle Heights is united against Trump’s agenda. DACA should remain untouched, and going even further we should continue demanding legalization for all of the undocumented.” DACA is Deferred Action which was granted to undocumented youth on June 15, 2012.
Centro CSO is part of the Legalization for All Network (L4A) and plans to continue fighting against deportations, as well as against police brutality in Boyle Heights. Last year Boyle Heights was victim of five police killings of Chicanos, including two teenagers: 14-year-old Jesse Romero and 16-year-old Jose “Peruzzi” Mendez.
Sol Márquez is a Centro CSO member and also a Chicana member of Freedom Road Socialist Organization.