Freeway blocked, flags burned as thousands protest Trump win around US
CHICAGO (AP) — The raw divisions exposed by the presidential race were on full display across America on Wednesday, as protesters flooded city streets to condemn Donald Trump's election in demonstrations that police said were mostly peaceful.
From New England to heartland cities like Kansas City and along the West Coast, demonstrators carried flags and anti-Trump signs, disrupting traffic and declaring that they refused to accept Trump's triumph.
In Los Angeles, that translated into blocking a major freeway, as people crowded onto an overpass on the 101 early Friday morning.
In Chicago, where thousands had recently poured into the streets to celebrate the Chicago Cubs' first World Series victory in over a century, several thousand people marched through the Loop. They gathered outside Trump Tower, chanting "Not my president!"
Chicago resident Michael Burke said he believes the president-elect will "divide the country and stir up hatred." He added there was a constitutional duty not to accept that outcome.
A similar protest in Manhattan drew about 1,000 people. Outside Trump Tower on Fifth Avenue in midtown, police installed barricades to keep the demonstrators at bay.
Hundreds of protesters gathered near Philadelphia's City Hall despite chilly, wet weather. Participants — who included both supporters of Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton and independent Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, who lost to Clinton in the primary — expressed anger at both Republicans and Democrats over the election's outcome.
In Boston, thousands of anti-Trump protesters streamed through downtown, chanting "Trump's a racist" and carrying signs that said "Impeach Trump" and "Abolish Electoral College." Clinton appears to be on pace to win the popular vote, despite losing the electoral count that decides the presidential race.
The protesters gathered on Boston Common before marching toward the Massachusetts Statehouse, with beefed-up security including extra police officers.
Protests flared at universities in California and Connecticut, while several hundred people marched in San Francisco and others gathered outside City Hall in Los Angeles. And they spread south to Richmond, Virginia, and to middle American cities like Kansas City and Omaha, Nebraska.
Hundreds of University of Texas students spilled out of classrooms to march through downtown Austin. They marched along streets near the Texas Capitol, then briefly blocked a crowded traffic bridge.
Marchers protesting Trump's election as president chanted and carried signs in front of the Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C.
Media outlets broadcast video Wednesday night showing a peaceful crowd in front of the new downtown hotel. Many chanted "No racist USA, no Trump, no KKK."
Another group stood outside the White House. They held candles, listened to speeches and sang songs.
Earlier Wednesday, protesters at American University burned U.S. flags on campus.
In Oregon, dozens of people blocked traffic in downtown Portland, burned American flags and forced a delay for trains on two light-rail lines. Earlier, the protest in downtown drew several Trump supporters, who taunted the demonstrators with signs. A lone Trump supporter was chased across Pioneer Courthouse Square and hit in the back with a skateboard before others intervened.
The only major violence was reported in Oakland, California, during a protest that began shortly before midnight and lasted into early Wednesday morning.
Some demonstrators set garbage bins on fire, broke windows and sprayed graffiti at five businesses in the downtown area, police said. No arrests were made.
Another protest began Wednesday evening downtown, with several hundred chanting, sign-waving people gathering in Frank Ogawa Plaza.
In San Francisco, hundreds are marching along Market Avenue, one of the city's main avenues, to join a vigil in the Castro District, a predominantly gay neighborhood.
Hundreds massed in downtown Seattle streets.
Many held anti-Trump and Black Lives Matter signs and chanted slogans, including "Misogyny has to go," and "The people united, will never be defeated."
At Evergreen State College south of Seattle, scores of students walked out of classes Wednesday to gather with anti-Trump signs.
Back in New York, several groups of protesters caused massive gridlock as police mobilized to contain them under a light rain.
They held signs that read "Trump Makes America Hate" and chanted "hey, hey, ho, ho Donald Trump has got to go." and "Impeach Trump."
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