East Bay DSA at SFO Protests

February 07, 2017 05:13

Hi everyone, just wanted to tell you a little bit about East Bay DSA's presence at the San Francisco International Airport (SFO) protests last weekend.

We became aware on Saturday that there were several detainees being held at SFO as a result of Trump's executive order banning immigrants and refugees from seven majority-Muslim countries. The ensuing protest at SFO was a two-day marathon, and Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) retained a presence at the airport at all times.

Luckily, thanks for the collaborative efforts of protestors and our supporters, we had plenty to eat.

DSA had three chapters represented at SFO: East Bay, San Francisco, and Silicon Valley. Our priorities were to occupy space and add to the volume of the chants, pressuring Customs and Border Protection to comply with the national stay that had been decided Saturday afternoon. But while we were there primarily in a support capacity, we did try to make DSA explicitly visible.

(That picture went viral on Twitter, with nearly nearly 4,000 likes and nearly 2,000 retweets — a lot of exposure for our logo!)

As Saturday night wore on, the protest thinned out a bit. After midnight, a couple of DSAers were thinking about packing it in. That's when we ran into a few latecomer members of our group, sporting DSA flare and in for the long haul. This picture was taken at 1:00 a.m. We were chanting, "We're not gonna sleep until they're released!"

The next morning, a whole new cast of Bay Area DSA members showed up to SFO bright and early.

We had a steady DSA presence until around 5:00 p.m., when it was announced that all the detainees had been released, and the organizers of the protest suggested we go home to preserve our energy for the long fight ahead. The chants didn't end there: our entire BART train was full of protesters reciting "No ban, no wall!"

Finally, here are a few videos to give you a sense of the atmosphere at SFO.

San Francisco celebrating the release of the first detainees in New York.

"Let the lawyers in, let the families out!"

"Let them go! Let them go!"

A Bay Area message for Donald Trump.

"We're not gonna sleep until they're released!"

"You build the wall, we tear it down!"

"We are people, we are not illegal!"

Thanks to everyone in DSA who showed up at SFO and all the other airports to demand the release of the detainees. There's still more work to do, and I'm glad to see that DSA will be there at the drop of a hat to get it done.

Reported by East Bay DSA member, Meagan Day