Filed under: Action, Anarchist Movement, Southeast, The State
Submitted to It’s Going Down
On Saturday evening (November 19), in response to a public call-to-action by a local solidarity group, about 30 socialist and anarchist comrades (along with a few curious liberals and even one already-almost-disillusioned Trump supporter) converged beside a bridge/road that leads from the mainland of West Palm to Trump’s gigantic multi-million dollar, 126-room Palm Beach home and resort/club called Mar-a-Lago. With Trump’s spotlit tower glowing gaudily behind them across the Lake Worth Lagoon (and intracoastal waterway, a conduit of trade and another symbol of capital), activists and protesters held signs reading everything from “Black Lives Matter, Blue Lives Don’t” to “Fight Brutality with Solidarity” to a simple one-word banner declaring “REVOLT.”
After granting interviews to local media, the group took over a lane of traffic and marched over the bridge to Trump’s driveway, where they gathered to chant:
“No Donald Trump, No KKK, No Fascist USA!”
“Donald Trump, KKK, Racist, Sexist, Anti-Gay!”
“All your money, all your lies, we will never compromise.”
“One, two, three, four: I declare class war! Five, six, seven, eight: Burn the ballot, smash the state!”
After chanting for awhile and re-convening back on the other end of the bridge, a megaphone was produced and time given for comments. People spoke about their experiences under racism, sexism, and capitalism, as well as the growing threat of fascism, the hypocrisy of the state’s definition of violence, and more–always to great enthusiasm and applause. A moment of silence and howls were also offered in honor of Transgender Day of Remembrance.
It was then noted that the group, ironically, had only been demonstrating at the service entrance, and so, in what amounted to a public demonstration of direct democracy, the group spontaneously but unanimously decided to march to the main entrance.
The group took over the bridge again and marched farther down the road to the front entrance, where they stood for some time blocking club members (who pay a $100,000 initial membership “initiation” fee) from accessing the resort’s palm-lined driveway. A line of local police quickly formed to protect the billionaire’s property, but they let the protesters picket across the driveway intersection. The protesters left the driveway, apparently when they got bored picketing, but they reconvened beside the bridge to open the floor once again for comments. There were no scuffles or arrests, when asked by police to comply on the return march, protesters defiantly responded with the acerbic chant:
“You say, ‘please.’ We say, “Fuck off!’ Please! Fuck-Off! Please-Fuck Off!”
This demonstration marked a welcome corrective to the recent liberal post-election messaging and protests both locally and globally. Demonstrators made absolutely clear that this demonstration was not just about Trump and the election results but everything for which Trump stands and exacerbates, including rampant capitalist exploitation of people and the environment, sexism, racism, and the threat of a white-supremacist authoritarian regime.
Aside from sending a more consistent and accurate message, this demonstration also marked an escalation and more intentional approach in both tactics and targeting for recent anti-Trump activities in the area. While demonstrators surely did not dent Trump’s accumulation of capital or convince his workers to commit workplace sabotage, they did send a strong message to both Trump’s rich neighbors, the liberal peace-police, and a quickly-radicalizing local community. As one local paper declares, in the coming months “…the membership-only club owned by Trump which also serves as his Florida home, will attract the kind of radical leftist dissent they moved to Palm Beach to avoid.”
It is clear from local demonstrations and marches that the local community does not accept Trump as president and is not complicit with his oppressive ideology, misogyny, or white-supremacism; but let it be known there are others who are also not complicit, along with these injustices, with capitalism, electoral politics, or the state’s oppressive existence–which is fundamentally tied to them.
-Some Anarchist / Not a Leninist