Donald Trump will be met with some very loud demonstrations when he arrives in the U.K., along with one much more subtle form of protest.
After a campaign that stretched back months, British critics of Trump worked together to bring the Green Day song “American Idiot” to the top of the charts just in time for this arrival to the U.K. As USA Today noted, the song was No. 1 on the British Amazon best-seller list and No. 18 on the British pop charts — though quickly climbing.
Protesters started advocating for the campaign months ago, with the organizing beginning as soon as Donald Trump announced his first official visit to the U.K. As The Hollywood Reporter noted, Trump had already put off the visit several times — and even asked his British counterpart if she could ban protesters.
“Trump reportedly asked British Prime Minister Theresa May to block all the protests upon his arrival, which she told him was not possible,” the report noted. “The president canceled a visit to London earlier this year for the opening of the new U.S. embassy building, saying he disapproved of the deal made by the Obama administration (though it was actually the George W. Bush administration) to sell the old U.S. consulate for ‘peanuts.'”
Donald Trump will be met with many other forms of protest in the U.K., including a giant balloon depicting him as a diaper-wearing baby. A group of protesters had to gain approval from the city of London to fly the balloon, which will greet Trump when he visits the British parliament. He is expected to be met with hundreds, possibly thousands, of protesters at other points of his trip.
For Britons, manipulating the pop charts is a long-honored tradition. They regularly launch campaigns to put unusual songs at the top of the charts, including a 2009 push for Rage Against The Machine’s profanity-laden song “Killing in the Name” to the top of the chart at Christmas to break a tradition of X-Factor winners from reaching No. 1.
The Rage Against The Machine song is famous for the lyric “F*** you, I won’t do what you tell me!” which was the message Brits were sending to those who expected X-Factor winner Joe McElderry to automatically snag the top spot.
Citizens of the U.K. have turned music chart manipulation into a cheeky tradition; now President Trump's upcoming visit has Brits campaigning for Green Day's "American Idiot." https://t.co/uhbhv9xH2B pic.twitter.com/e4EFTFbSIM
— NPR Music (@nprmusic) July 11, 2018
Donald Trump will be in the U.K. for several days, meeting with Prime Minister Theresa May and having tea with Queen Elizabeth II, before jetting off to the Finnish capital Helsinki on Monday to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin.