On Jan. 17, The Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action, Integration, Immigrant Rights and the fight for Equality By Any Means Necessary, held a demonstration outside of the David Adamany Undergraduate Library.
At the demonstration, BAMN called for a city-wide shut down from Jan. 19 and Jan. 20, and announced a plan for a protest march in response to Donald Trump’s presidential inauguration.
Markeith Jones, chair of the WSU BAMN chapter, said that now is the time to organize in response to a “failure of democracy."
“Trump is getting ready to issue millions of deportations, among other things, and there is no way that we can just sit by and let that happen,” Jones said. “[Trump's] side is organizing, and we have to organize to crush the movement that Trump is building.”
According to a flier handed out by volunteers and organizers, BAMN is requesting that schools, universities and workplaces shut down for these two days in order to voice dissension about Trump ascending to the presidency.
Western High School teacher Steve Conn says that Trump can be defeated, and that Detroit can be instrumental in doing so.
“I support this protest because I think Trump is going to be a terrible disaster for the American people,” Conn said. “I’m a teacher in Detroit, and I’m calling for a complete shutdown of the school district on Inauguration day, including Wayne State.”
The flier lists what BAMN believes should be demanded of the American government and people, including defense of immigrant rights, public education, and sanctuary cities and campuses, as well as cancellation of the Mexican border wall and reform in the Electoral College.
Donna Stern, chairperson of the local unit of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, said she is participating in the march to primarily champion the Affordable Healthcare Act.
“The Detroit Medical Center is the largest employer and largest health care provider in Detroit, and if affordable healthcare is destroyed, it’s going to have a huge negative impact on Detroiters who use the facility,” Stern said. “I am here to represent them and fight the racism amassing behind Trump.”
BAMN also informed passersby about a protest rally being held on Jan. 18 for Rabiu Musah, a refugee from Ghana who fled his home country because he is homosexual.
According to the information provided by BAMN, Musah is facing deportation back to Ghana, where homosexuality is illegal.
The Trump protest march will take place at noon in front of the UGL on Jan. 20.
The march for Musah will be on Jan. 18 at noon at the UGL. More information about both events can be found on the BAMN Facebook page.