Anti-Trump activists seized on Monday’s federal holiday to organize “Not My Presidents Day” rallies in Portland and around the country.
Police arrested 13 protesters at a downtown Portland rally. Six of those people are under 18.
Officers have made arrests near SW 3rd/Madison due to unpermitted street blockage during #NotMyPresidentsDay protest.— Portland Police (@PortlandPolice) February 20, 2017
That Portland gathering started at around 11 a.m. at the federal building downtown. The group clashed with police early on as they blocked the roadway on Southwest 3rd Avenue at Madison Street, according to the Portland Police Bureau. Police said the traffic blockage was not permitted, and anyone who failed to return to the sidewalk would be arrested.
Officers used pepper spray and less-than-lethal munitions during clashes with protesters.
In a post on Facebook, the American Civil Liberties Union of Oregon called actions by police officers "shameful." The ACLU of Oregon also called on the police bureau to end violence against protesters and "stop the unnecessary use of crowd control weapons."
Before the confrontation with police on Southwest 3rd Avenue, protesters said they came to denounce the President’s policies.
“It all worries me,” said Shameem Rakha. “It worries me that he started a ban on Muslims, even though he said it’s not that. It worries me what’s happening with our education system.”
Some protesters later said they were upset that anarchists had hijacked the day’s message and turned it into one of violence and lawbreaking.
“As far as the behavior goes, we’re kind of bummed out about it,” said Tom Van Lehn, a Vietnam veteran from Beaverton. “We came down here for a purpose.”
Others agreed, but said police were too aggressive in moving into the crowd. “Yes, they were looking for certain people,” said Louise Sanders. “But they mowed over innocent people just protesting.”
All 13 protesters received traffic citations for failing to obey a police officer. The seven adults were cited for additional crimes and booked into the Multnomah County Jail.
The arrested protesters were:
Margaret Ann Zebroski, 66, was arrested for disorderly conduct in the second degree.
Heather Grace White, 42, was arrested for disorderly conduct in the second degree.
David Johnathan Carlson, 31, was arrested for disorderly conduct in the second degree.
Charles Ernest Stubbs, 38, was arrested for disorderly conduct in the second degree.
John Doe, 37, (booked as Quanice Hayes) was arrested for disorderly conduct in the second degree, resisting arrest and furnishing false information to police.
Two 16-year-old girls and a 17-year-old girl received traffic citations.
Lucy Elizabeth Smith, 34, was arrested for disorderly conduct in the second degree.
Rebecca Smith-White, 33, was arrested for disorderly conduct in the second degree.
14, 16 and 17 year old boys received traffic citations.
Director Park rally
Another Portland event began at Director Park at noon, and police said organizers did have a permitted street closure.
To be clear, there is a permitted street closure event starting at Director Park and an unpermitted street closure due to different group.— Portland Police (@PortlandPolice) February 20, 2017
There were no arrests during the permitted event, police said.
The Director Park protest was organized by labor unions and community groups, said Nancy Haque of Basic Rights Oregon. She said the aim was to create a peaceful march that was family friendly, and organizers worked with police on a protected route for the march.
“We wanted to make it safe for children, people who are undocumented, and so it was a permitted rally,” said Haque.
Protest leaders around the country said they expected thousands to take to the streets in Los Angeles, Chicago, New York and as many as two dozen other communities in the latest round of demonstrations to oppose the policies of President Donald Trump.
Some 13,000 Facebook users, for instance, said they planned to join a protest Monday near Manhattan’s Central Park.
“While we acknowledge that Donald Trump holds the current title, the policies he’s trying to put in place are not the beliefs shared by the majority of the people,” said Nova Calise, a television production manager and one of the organizers of New York event.
“We do not accept Donald Trump as our president because he does not represent us,” she said, citing his policies on abortion and immigration as top concerns. Organizers say speakers will include Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer and Sonia Ossorio, who runs the New York City chapter of the National Organization for Women.
Calise said activists around the country were inspired by plans for a Presidents Day protest in Los Angeles and have collaborated via Facebook for about three weeks. “No one expected this to get so large,” she said. “That’s the power of social media.”
Other protests include:
► In Los Angeles, activists plan a 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. protest outside City Hall.
► In Atlanta, organizers plan what they call an “ImPEACH Now” march.
► In Chicago, 3,700 people have indicated on Facebook that they will join Monday’s noon rally across the Chicago River from the Trump Tower and another 16,000 say they are interested in the event.
One of the Chicago organizers, business professor Laura Hartman, said the event has an overarching theme of unity. Hartman said Trump’s early moves — from attacking journalists to imposing limits on immigration — could splinter the public.
“We don’t want to pick an issue,” said Hartman, who also attended the massive Women’s March in Washington last month. “By embracing a broad umbrella, we can show this administration that the numbers against it are broad."
Protesters staged other marches and rallies in the run-up to Presidents' Day. In New York, for instance, activists gathered downtown Saturday at Washington Square Park to hold a mock “funeral” for the presidency. New York Police Department officials Sunday declined to provide a crowd estimate, citing department policy.
On Saturday, Trump staged his own rally for supporters in Florida, drawing roughly 9,000 people to an aircraft hangar in Melbourne.