Top videos and bottom right courtesy of Kaylee Schwitzer; bottom left video courtesy of Sonia Manseen. Compiled by James Little

On Wednesday night protestors in New York chant “We’re all immigrants” “United we stand, fuck the system at hand,” “Trump, you’re fired,” and protestors in San Francisco chant “Hey, hey, ho, ho, Donald Trump has got to go"

Following the results of Tuesday’s presidential election, many Bowdoin alumni participated in protests across the nation. Participants said the protests attempted to focus on solidarity rather than confrontation in the wake of President-elect Donald Trump’s win.

 Amanda Maisel ’15 attended a protest outside of Trump Tower in New York City. 

“[The protest] felt like a way I could say in that moment, on that day, I’m thinking of everyone in my life who is affected by this and showing them that I’m there for them, even if they’re far away,” she said in a phone interview with the Orient. “[I felt a] civic duty to resist what’s happening and to show that this is not acceptable—the way the election seems to be legitimizing certain kinds of hate and bigotry.”

Some chants exhibited anger against Trump; others focused more on defending the rights that protesters felt the President-elect threatens.

“You had people who were white screaming, ‘Black Lives Matter,’ you had guys chanting, ‘Her body, her choice,’ you had American citizens chanting, ‘No human is illegal,” said Kaylee Schwitzer ’15, who also attended a New York City protest, in a phone interview with the Orient. “It’s not just about me fighting for what I’m fighting for. It’s really that our values aren’t being represented by this man.”

Hugh Ratcliffe ’15 attended a protest in Portland, Oregon and found that it created an atmosphere of empowerment. 

“We’re not under any illusion that by marching through the streets of Portland we’re going to upend the democratic process. But it’s important to be out there and to be heard and also to stand together with so many groups that feel frightened,” Ratcliffe said in a phone interview with the Orient. “It’s a continuing protest for Black Lives Matter. It’s a continuing protest for women’s rights.”

Ratcliffe noted that in Portland, the protest was also intertwined with demands of the state and local government. 

The protests largely remained peaceful across the country. Sonia Manssen ’15, who protested in San Francisco, though that the non-confrontational nature of that protest reflected the city’s liberal identity. 

“San Fran is such a liberal city … pretty much everyone I know has the same feelings that I have of discomfort and fear so the fact that there was a protest here doesn’t very much surprise me and I also don’t think there are many people who disagree with it,” Manssen said. 

Both Schwitzer and Maisel felt that New York reflected this same liberal homogeneity and, therefore, produced a non-confrontational protest. 

“We didn’t run into any Trump supporters while we were doing this—or at least no one that was willing to say anything,” Schwitzer said. “It feels like everyone in here feels the same way, so it was more this great exercise of releasing anxiety.”

Maisel noted that while this exercise was powerful, its unity simultaneously felt like “preaching to the choir.”

“To some extent [New York] is a liberal echo chamber, and that is to some extent one of the big problems in this election,” she said. “Eventually we can’t just be agreeing with each other. We’re going to have to do work that acknowledges [how] angry people are, as much as [they feel] the incredible bigotry and misogyny. We also have to actually be speaking to people who voted a different way than us and who feel like, in some cases, this was their only option for change.”