"Hey, hey, ho, ho, Rohrabacher has got to go!" was the chant of about two hundred people who gathered yesterday afternoon in downtown Huntington Beach for the "Resistance 48: Peaceful Rally For Justice In OC" event, the latest and grandest protest against nasty, nasty Congressman Dana Rohrabacher.
Resistance 48 ralliers gathered at Triangle Park around 1 p.m. then marched through downtown HB to Pier Plaza. The rally headed towards the south side of the beach then looped back through Main Street to end at Triangle Park around
While most signs asked Dana Rohrabacher to hold a town hall with concerned constituents—the same constituents Rohrabacher has said are "engaged in political thuggery"—others promoted anti-Trump, progressive and democratic ideals.
Upon gathering at Pier Plaza, Resistance 48'ers were met with opposing yells from Latino anti-immigration activist Raymond Herrera (who's made it onto Southern Poverty Law Center's "Hatewatch" three times) and a handful of white dudes—one of which sported a Trump hat and another held the yellow-and-red "Stop Illegal Immigration" sign made infamous by the late, horrible HB gal, Barbara Coe of the California Coalition for Immigration Reform. Other Danabros also unfurled a sign that read "Communidad" in a direct mockery of Oak View activists, who have upset many HBers for daring to not be the passive Mexicans of yore.
At one point, Herrera and friends got into a shouting match with Resistance 48 ralliers. The 48'ers chanted "Love Trumps Hate" over Herrera and company's "U.S.A., U.S.A., U.S.A."
Ralliers re-congregated a few feet away from the Herrera bunch to hear speeches from Liz McNabb of Planned Parenthood, Carlos Salas a DACA recipient, UCLA grad and local business owner and Dania Alkhouli, a hijabi co-founder of A Country Called Syria.
Speeches were cut short when Resistance 48 ralliers started yelling "Shame! Shame!" Game of Thrones style, to the man holding a "Stop Illegal Immigration" sign (which, seriously, bruh: the rally wasn't about immigration. Why you triggered?). That's when Resistance 48 organizers led the rally to the south side of the beach—away from Herrera and the haters.
Once on the sand, ralliers formed a "Resist!!" and "Where's Dana?" sign with their bodies. A drone flew overhead to capture aerial photos of the human typography.
Organizers reminded ralliers to stay peaceful on their march back to Triangle Park through Main Street. On their way back, ralliers sang the "Star Spangled Banner" in unison and chanted "This is what democracy looks like!"
Bystanders had mixed reactions to the rally. Some cheered the marchers on while others openly jeered them. I saw two paisa workers in the doorway of the Main Street restaurant they worked at taking in the spectacle and giving marchers a thumbs up. Following the rally from beginning to end were Huntington Beach police officers on horseback, bicycle and foot patrol.
Once back at Triangle Park, organizers thanked ralliers for coming out, staying peaceful and cleaning up after themselves. They even gave the Huntington Beach Police Department a loud "thank you" for keeping things safe.
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The crowd dispersed and I headed for my car when a
Stay classy, HB!