President Donald Trump is traveling all over these days and meeting various types of crowds as he does so. Protesters showed up in Sioux Falls to protest his arrival at the Sioux Falls Convention Center, reported the Argus Leader. More than 50 people showed up to the last-minute “pop-up” protest to show their ire for Trump, who was making his first-ever trip to South Dakota as a president.
The Dakotas are both notoriously chilly states this time of year, and it appears things did not warm up for President Trump upon arrival. The protesters were carrying Baby Trump signs, balloons, and other large signs as they made their way to the convention center from Terrace Park. They gathered at the intersection of Bailey Street and West Avenue to protest the president, who was attending a campaign rally for gubernatorial candidate Kristi Noem, currently a U.S. Representative.
“Because he was coming here, there was no way I could not make my presence known,” Sioux Falls resident Denise Kruse said. “It may not do a whole lot or make a difference, but I’m showing my children and grandchildren that their grandma stood up and tried.”
It’s a pop-up protest, and there are definite guidelines. pic.twitter.com/TjbpcTpHYC— Shelly Conlon (@Shelly_Conlon) September 7, 2018
The rules of the protest encouraged protesters to be peaceful and safe, and to gather on the sidewalks in groups no larger than 25. The aim of the protest was more about making their feelings known than causing enormous disruption or getting the event cancelled. The protesters were mostly elderly, and mostly women. All were local and felt the need to make their feelings known as the Trump motorcade made its way past the group, who were standing on a grassy median. Law enforcement ushered them there after confusion arose about protesting on state-owned property.
“Hey hey, ho ho, President Trump has got to go!” they chanted as the cars drove past.
“I’m protesting the president’s zero tolerance policy, which separates children from their families and puts them in cages,” said Sheila Wood, an organizer and retired Sioux Falls teacher. “I’m also out here protesting the trade war and tariff policies that hurt South Dakota families.”
Wood planned the protest just the night before, with a simple plea on Facebook. She only expected about 10 people, and the turnout far surpassed her expectation. Passersby and neighbors of the park even asked if there were extra signs so they could join in. It is clear that Wood has a gift for organization, and the people of Sioux Falls are behind her.