On the 18th of January, a packed crowd marched from the Friendship Heights Metro to Western Eve and Tenneson St, as close to the home of Mike Pence as police barricades on the side street would let them get. Most of the crowd had to stay on Western Ave simply due to its size. The message of the crowd was simple: the hate and bigotry Pence stands for will not be tolerated. This was a Disrupt J20 and Werk for Peace event.
Many residential protests have originated in Friendship Heights, but this was probably the largest. It was quite peaceful with very few counterprotesters, some of them being children who cannot in any way be blamed for the views of their parents. Despite the size of the march and extended period for which Western Ave was blocked, it may have been one of the least tense of the home demos in that area, quite a contrast to the rough HLS home demos of the 2008-2011 era that started from the same place. Police made no trouble at all, in fact asking dancers to dance all-out to neutralize any potential confrontations with the few Trumpers present.
At one point rumors reached organizers that the KKK had set up at McPherson Square, and hurried plans were made to make a quick visit to Mr Pence’s house, then turn around and march all the way to McPherson Square to confront the Klan. These rumors turned out to be false, a scout team found nothing there.
Mike Pence is known to advocate “conversion therapy” attempting to turn GLBT people “straight.” Science has disproven this kind of “therapy” and it is now illegal to offer it in some states due to the harm it can cause as well as the issue of offering fraudulent therapies disproven by science. Still, the Trump administration has proven on other issues like Climate that scientific evidence has little weight with them. Pence is also militantly anti-abortion and of course want to restrict marriage to hetrosexual couples only. Many of his views would not be out of place in Daesh (aka the UnIslamic State) save for the name he calls his god.
Pence’s attitudes coupled with the difficulty of other residents accessing their own homes due to Secret Service barricades and checkpoints have reportedly driven many of his neighbors to display rainbow flags in protest.
This is but the beginning of the DisruptJ20 protests, and there are reports that this inauguration will have an unusually small number of supportive spectators combined with the huge number of protesters expected. Bands and musicians are refusing to perform for Trump, and the parade had to be shortened because so many marching bands declined to participate.
Marching on Western Ave towards Mike Pence’s house
Dancing near Mike Pence’s house