Donald Trump’s visit to the U.K. has come to an end, and the people of London have not hesitated to voice their opinions on the American president during his stay. Rallies were held both to welcome and reject him, with anti-Trump protests on Friday, July 13th, and a pro-Trump event the next day.
Liberty Nation attended both the pro- and anti- Trump rallies, so without further ado, we present our own eyewitness account of London’s reaction to President Donald Trump.
London’s emotional weekend kicked off on Friday morning, with the raising of the infamous “Trump Baby” blimp. Liberty Nation reached out to the event organizers for comment, but when we were told in response that our publication name “sounds a bit libertarian and weirdly far-right,” we realized that an interview was unlikely.
The Trump Baby made another appearance at the second protest of the day, a rally organized by the Women’s March organization with the theme “Bring the Noise.” Speakers declared that the group was “on the right side of history here today” and that the only social phobia allowed was “Trump-phobia.” There were also performances including a choir who asked the audience to sing a song with the lyrics, “Racist bigot, sexist piggot, Donald Trump is a disaster.”
Our next stop was undoubtedly the largest event during Trump’s visit, a “Carnival of Resistance” that filled London’s iconic Trafalgar Square — nobody could deny that a very large crowd was there objecting to Trump’s visit. For some reason, the speeches were barely audible, but it didn’t seem to matter. The event did indeed have somewhat of a carnival atmosphere, with a few drum circles, picnics and dance groups scattered around. There was a contingent of stalls promoting different socialist political parties, as well as uglier activities, including a Trump punch-doll. There was a huge range of signs and placards, some of which were provided by organizations including the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament and various socialist groups, while many of the homemade signs were extremely vulgar. Some messages included:
- Trump is a C**t
- No to Racism No to Trump
- Trump = Patriarchy
- Child Refugees Need Safe Passage
- I Hate Trump
- Oh For God’s Sake Just Die
- Stop Putting Kids in Cages You Sick F**k
The next day was no less eventful, with one pro-Trump rally and one Free Tommy Robinson protest. The Trump welcome event took place outside the U.S. Embassy and was organized by the group Make Britain Great Again – complete with red MBGA caps. Clearly a smaller crowd than the previous day, the event had faced serious challenges from the police and disinformation campaigns claiming that it had been canceled, as well as far less publicity. When questioned on the size of the crowd, event organizer Luke Nash-Jones claimed that anti-Trump protestors from the previous day had been bussed in from all over the country with funding from people like George Soros and that there was not a level playing field for his grassroots event.
The atmosphere was relaxed and calm, despite a heavy police presence. Speakers included MBGA activists Martin Costello and Luke Nash-Jones, UKIP Regional Chairman Freddy Vachha and representatives from the Australian Liberty Alliance, including Jewish activist Avi Yemini. Several of the speakers made reference to the historical relationship between the U.K. and U.S., citing alliances that lead to victory in WWI and WWII. Nash-Jones told the audience:
“We have gathered here to today to welcome the U.S. president and we do so not just out of respect for America’s democratic choice of leader, not just because we admire Trump’s stance against Globalism and political correctness, not just because this is the morally right thing to do but because America, you truly are the bastion of freedom in the world today.”
U.S. and British flags were on display, as well as signs with messages such as:
- Britain Loves Trump
- Thank You President Trump for Siding with the People of Iran
- Haitians for Trump
- USA Our No.1 Ally
The original plan laid out by the organizers was to hold the Trump welcome event outside the American Embassy and then march over to join a separate Free Tommy Robinson rally — although the Free Tommy event was not organized by MBGA, evidently there is a lot of cross-pollination between Trump and Tommy supporters.
According to organizers, the pro-Trump rally was the victim of discrimination by the Metropolitan Police, who attempted to ban the event under the Public Order Act, which threatened the organizers with a three-month jail sentence and attendees with a £200 (around $260) fine if a protest took place near the U.S. embassy. Eventually the Pro-Trump rally was allowed to go ahead at the embassy, however, police and MBGA representatives warned attendees not to march or form a procession anywhere near the area, but to leave separately as individuals or in groups no larger than two people. They were also advised not to display banners or signs, and one woman was reportedly threatened with arrest for carrying an effigy of London Mayor Sadiq Khan’s face attached to a nude female doll because it was deemed “offensive.”
Tommy Robinson Rally
A second march took place on Saturday to free anti-Islamification activist Tommy Robinson from jail, with guest speakers including Dutch politician Geert Wilders and former editor-in-chief of Breitbart London Raheem Kassam. Unfortunately, Tommy Robinson supporters seem to be a magnet for trouble and their demonstrations during Trump’s visit were no exception. A small group of 10-20 pro-Trump, pro-Tommy demonstrators attracted small crowds of anti-Trump protestors on Friday, requiring protection from a significant number of police. Anti-Trump protestors were heard complaining about the expense of so much police protection for so few people, however, they did not seem to question who those people required protection from.
Saturday saw these tensions erupt into violence on the streets between Tommy/ Trump supporters and counter-protestors; a few street fights broke out and reportedly 12 people were arrested. The Free Tommy rally also ended similarly to a previous one in London, with a contingent of Tommy supporters taking over Nelson’s Column and the streets in front of Trafalgar Square. Although police were clearly wary, the incident ended without further violence.
Compare and Contrast
Having attended both the anti- and pro-Trump rallies, there were a number of observable differences worth mentioning. One major difference was the presence of children; the anti-Trump rallies clearly had a “family atmosphere” with many young children in attendance with their parents, and even carrying signs — we even witnessed an infant carrying a sign reading “Toddlers against Trump.” This shows a clear passing of politics from parent to child, before the child is able to make an informed opinion or understand the issues involved.
By contrast, the pro-Trump and pro-Tommy rallies were comprised of adults and teens who already possess the mental faculties to make their own political decisions, and evidently, they had decided that a political event is not a suitable environment for children. The willingness of anti-Trump protestors to foist their own views onto children displays a disturbing trend of indoctrination that may have serious implications in the decades to come. It should also be noted that these parents did not appear to mind exposing their children to the huge amount obscenity used on signs and by speakers.
Another major contrast between the two days was the police reaction. In a free society, all political opinions should be allowed, so why was the pro-Trump event threatened with cancellation? Did the police think that Trump supporters would truly encourage violence or cause a serious public danger? In truth, there was no such danger until a small group of counter-protestors confronted a small group of pro-Trump supporters. The individual police present on the ground merely did their jobs as best they could, but it is becoming difficult to deny that the British law enforcement authorities are becoming increasingly partisan in their political allegiances.
In considering a weekend divided by two sides of the political debate, let us think of that quote famously attributed to Mother Theresa: “I was once asked why I don’t participate in anti-war demonstrations. I said that I will never do that, but as soon as you have a pro-peace rally, I’ll be there.”
After all, will it really improve the world to put all that energy into something that you hate, rather than something that you love?
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