On Monday night, President Donald Trump visited Greenville, S.C., to help Governor Henry McMaster fundraise for his 2018 election. The Greenville County Democratic Party and its allies staged a counter-protest. I went to see what an anti-Trump protest looked like in the heart of Red State South Carolina.
Here’s what I found.
As expected, the turnout was light — about 150 people at the beginning, though it filled in throughout the event. The speakers focused on the normal anti-Trump talking points. I was, however, pleasantly surprised that the rally was peaceful. There were no masked Antifa at Falls Park, where the anti-Trump rally took place. They may have been out at the airport, but they were not at Falls Park.
Growing up in Massachusetts, where Democrats routinely win, I feel for outsiders like this trying to be heard. Even though I very much disagree with most of their positions. Greenville County, for instance, went about 55 percent for Donald Trump in the 2016 election, while the surrounding counties were all well over 60 percent (and one even hit 74 percent). This is not a very “Resistance”-friendly region.
The small band of resisters had all the normal outrageous things you’d expect at a “Resistance” rally. There was a guy in a black hoodie holding a communist flag, with a companion holding a “Capitalism Kills” sign. (It’s communism that does.) There were grown LARPers in full “Handmaid” outfits. And you had your obnoxious Trump will “see you next Tuesday” sign.
That was a great sign for a family event. There was also a poor soul who didn’t realize how much Barack Obama really raised the nation’s debt to.
The current national debt is well over $20 trillion. But facts have never gotten in the way of a good progressive argument.
The speakers were, in a way, sad. There was a woman leading the crowd in the tired chants of the Left. You know the type … “What do we want? [insert want response] When do we want it? Now,” “The [insert group that self-identifies as oppressed] united, will never be defeated!” and some protest sing-songs.
What was the most important thing I saw at this rally? That the Left knows how to organize. I remember going to Tea Party rallies during the Obama administration. What I saw were a lot of very passionate people railing against Obama’s policies. What I didn’t see was a lot of direct follow-up grassroots action.
Almost every speaker at that rally told people to sign up to make phone calls, to sign up to knock on doors, to sign up to do the things that lead to the actual election of candidates. It is a lesson conservatives can and should learn.
So that’s what an anti-Trump rally looks like in the heart of a red state. A smaller, less violent, version of what you’d see in the heart of Resistance country.
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