Thousands Flood Copley Square to Protest Trump’s Immigration Order

Thousands of protesters march from Copley Square to the Massachusetts State House on Jan. 29, 2017 to protest President Dondald Trump's anti-immigration order. Photo by Alexandra Wimley/BU News Service

By Sana Haque 
BU News Service

Following a night of protests at Logan Airport, thousands of people filled Copley Square on Sunday afternoon to protest President Donald Trump’s recent executive order barring refugees and immigrants from seven Muslim-majority countries.

Demonstrators called out, “No hate, no fear, refugees are welcome here” and  “Can’t build a wall, hands too small,” as they waved signs expressing solidarity with immigrants and Muslims: “Welcome refugees,” “Love thy Muslim neighbor” and “Jews and Muslims United.” One sign had a picture of Anne Frank with “Visa denied” emblazoned below.

On Friday, Trump signed an executive order barring citizens from Syria, Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen from entering the United States for 90 days. The order included a 120-day ban on all refugee admissions and an indefinite ban on refugees from Syria. In response, the Massachusetts chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) organized a protest online for Sunday. Word spread quickly on Facebook and by the end of the day on Saturday, there were over 17,000 people “interested” in attending.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren made an appearance at Sunday’s protest, calling for protesters to “stand for human values.” She called Trump’s executive order both illegal and unconstitutional.

Sen. Ed Markey also spoke, saying, “Today, Lady Liberty is weeping.” He encouraged protesters to “keep your voices loud.”

Pakistani graduate student Saliha Agha, 26, of Boston University said that the day’s protests brought her hope.  “The sight of supporters surrounding the praying Muslims was touching,” she said. “It’s impossible not to feel hopeful when you see everyone stand up and fight for you.”

Tooba Fatima, a 24-year-old Pakistani graduate student at Boston College, echoed the sentiment. “I’m overwhelmed by the love I’m feeling today in Boston” she said.

“Look at this crowd. Listen to them fight for another human being. It’s beautiful, absolutely beautiful.”

 

Sarah Toy contributed reporting.

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