Donald Trump came to Kansas City on Tuesday, July 24 to address the VFW National Convention expecting a hero's welcome, despite his administration's ongoing degradation of every American institution that stands up for our citizens, including the VFW. Local residents joined at multiple locations to protest Trump and honor those who champion human rights, dignity, and justice for all Americans, including our veterans who have sacrificed so much for our country.
Tuesday was our day to show the world that in Kansas City, WE CARE. We care about the values our veterans fought for, and that our troops continue to fight for: freedom and justice for all; the rights of children to stay with their parents no matter where they were born; the rights of people to love who they love; the right to walk down the street in freedom and safety no matter their skin color; the rights of women to have control over their own bodies. We care and we will not stand idly by.
The morning drew about 150 protesters to the designated protest area at 13th and Washington but because the area was isolated from traffic, the gathering was more of a “protest to each other,” as characterized by one participant. Around 10:30 the group migrated to 10th and Broadway joining other protesters just outside the barricaded area. Additionally, there were other ad-hoc groups around downtown and even at a few locations around Midtown and Brookside. Later in the afternoon a large group of several hundred convened on Barney Allis Plaza at 12th and Central. What started out as three separate events led by local activist groups and grassroots organizers became one large, spirited and vocal throng. This group included citizens from all walks of life including a number of veterans, some of whom came over from the VFW convention to join in. Organizers led rousing chants and noted voting rights advocate and combat veteran Jason Kander gave an improptu speech, as well as local entertainment personality Missy Koonce and several Kansas Citians from the crowd. Voter Registration Projects was in attendance and registered over a dozen new voters!
We gathered to show that we do not accept President Trump's policies and rhetoric which has left American citizens marginalized and demoralized. We won’t stand by and watch as our communities are torn apart by an incompetent, malign administration and complicit Congress.