If Trump thought that his incessant rhetoric against virtually everyone who doesn’t look, think, and act like him was going to earn him anything less than a protest presence at virtually every public appearance, he was wrong.
Trump visited Hawaii this past Friday as the first stop on a trip that will have him spending almost two weeks in Asia, and he was met by protesters — including middle schoolers who are among the many to have gathered in the Hawaii state capitol. The Los Angeles Times reports that anti-Trump protesters outnumbered those who turned out in support of the president on Friday.
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"Welcome to Kenya!" A growing crowd protests Trump by Honolulu state capitol during his visit to Honolulu pic.twitter.com/KnTeFJSvf2
— Jaweed Kaleem 🦅 (@jaweedkaleem) November 4, 2017
Trump, while in Hawaii, visited the memorial to the victims of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, which helped push the United States into World War II.
As the Los Angeles Times lays out, there is a noteworthy — and perhaps chilling — parallel between the threat faced by those in the Pearl Harbor era and the threat faced by present day Hawaiians and others.
At the end of World War II, the United States dropped two atomic bombs on major Japanese cities, killing massive numbers of people. At present, the threat to the United States and the rest of the world from the North Korean nuclear arsenal is continuing to grow, helped along by Trump himself. The president has continued on with a vitriolic strain of rhetoric against the North Koreans that the nation’s leadership has used as an excuse to continue growing their nuclear capabilities.
In response to the threat, Hawaii “will [soon] start testing a statewide bomb warning system that hasn’t been used since the Cold War.”
It’s not as though Hawaiians liked Trump very much to begin with. The state — which went to Hillary Clinton by a 32 percent margin in the 2016 election — has successfully challenged not one, but three successive versions of President Trump’s travel ban. These challenges have stretched over a period of ten months at this point, which is the entirety of Trump’s time in office.
As Democratic member of the state’s House of Representatives Kaniela Ing summed it up:
‘The idea of the aloha spirit is that we welcome everyone who comes here. But when there’s a leader whose whole M.O. seems to be making America a less welcoming place for whole groups of people, that’s where we need to draw the line. He’s simply not welcome.’
Don’t forget, Trump has tried to discredit protests against him in the past, claiming — as others on his side have done — that protesters against him are paid.
Earlier this year — on Tax Day — protesters gathered across the country to call for Trump to release his tax returns, something that he’d promised to do throughout the campaign season, before saying he wouldn’t be releasing his tax returns after all following his election and inauguration.
A large crowd of people march holding signs during a March On Tax Day to demand that United States President Donald Trump release his tax returns, at Bryant Park, Manhattan, New York City, New York, April 15, 2017. (Photo via EuropaNewswire/Gado/Getty Images)
The day following those protests, Trump tweeted a message suggesting — with no evidence — that the protesters had been paid, writing:
‘Someone should look into who paid for the small organized rallies yesterday. The election is over!’
It’s not as though Trump’s tax returns are irrelevant and the Tax Day protests — or any other protests — against him are a fool’s errand. Trump’s tax returns, if released, would reveal exactly where the president’s financial interests lie, thus shining some light on why he makes the decisions he does.