Peaceful protests should remain peaceful

Clarissa Wong, Copy Editor

“By this time tomorrow one of these candidates will be president, and the other will be threatening to sue reality.” When Daily Show host Trevor Noah was referring to the upcoming Election Day and the Democratic and Republican candidates, he didn’t consider the hundreds of thousands of anti-Trump voters that would descend on city streets and protest #NotMyPresident.

The rallies occurred all over the country from Los Angeles to New York to Chicago just hours after the results were revealed. And to some extent, I understand why people would want to protest.

Trump is misogynistic. Trump can be unprofessional. Trump is a hypocrite for saying that he wants for us to “come together as one united people” when he plans on alienating half of the American population by building a wall.

Holding up signs isn’t taking action, it’s being passive

Plus, freedom of speech and freedom of expression in this country are not just allowed, but encouraged, so protesters had every right to speak their minds.

For the most part, the protests were peaceful. However, protests in Portland, Oregon involved dumpster fires and smashed windows, to which the city police retaliated with pepper spray and stun grenades. In Oakland, California, streets were set on fire and cops used tear gas. But it’s not just violence that makes the protests wrong.

These protesters have no objective. What point are they trying to prove? What do they plan to achieve? No matter how many rallies there are or how much property damage is inflicted, it is essentially set in stone Trump will be the 45th president of the United States come January. If the protesters are trying to change something, holding up signs isn’t taking action; it’s being passive.

Fortunately, in this country, we don’t have to stand back and watch. If people are truly unhappy with the results, there are ways to participate in government, such as working to pass legislature through local government. And this doesn’t only apply to post-election protesting. A change isn’t going to happen unless you do something to act upon it.

As for our president-elect, the people have spoken, and now is not the time to try to fight against the results, but to respect the country’s decision.