In a totally unconstitutional move, the National Park Service waited until just 2 weeks prior to Donald Trump’s January 20th Inauguration to issue permits allowing organizations to protest the event. This does not give groups enough time to prepare, according to Ben Becker of the ANSWER Coalition, which was issued one of the first permits:
It makes it very difficult to organize, to tell people that we have a permit, to make the necessary logistical preparations when we only have a permit in hand two weeks before the event.
ANSWER Coalition is expecting many thousands to join them in protesting the Trump agenda starting at 7am in the morning of the 20th and continuing on into the night. If you can attend, let them know using this form at the bottom. Why ANSWER Coalition is protesting:
We are protesting to show Trump and his cabinet, and let the whole world know, that the people of this country will not go backwards, that we oppose this far-right government of billionaire oligarchs and bigots, and we will fight it every step of the way, starting on Day One. We are inaugurating the resistance to the coming attacks on immigrants, Muslims, workers’ rights and women’s rights. This protest is not a one-day event — it is the beginning of a powerful grassroots movement for profound radical reorganization to put the needs of the people first rather than the corporate elites and military-industrial complex.
We hope to make it clear that huge numbers of people from many different communities will unite to stop the Trump agenda. Against Trump’s program of false promises and bigotry, we will put forward an alternative vision based on full rights for all immigrants, fighting racism, for women’s right to control their own bodies, and the guaranteed right to health care, housing, education and decent-paying jobs. The Democratic Party leaders are preparing to compromise with or capitulate to Trump — only a movement of the people will stop this far-right Republican government.
Other organizations which have applied for protest permits along the Inauguration Parade route or nearby include: DC Action Lab, Progressive Independent Party, Exodus Foundation, Real Progressives, People’s Action, National Action Network, Black is Back Coalition, and The Gathering for Justice.
It wasn’t until a lawsuit was threatened by the Partnership for Civil Justice Fund (PCJF) until the National Park Service to finally issue the permits:
As discussed at a press conference this afternoon, the PCJF notified the NPS by letter that it was in violation of the permanent injunction entered against it in 2008 in federal court litigation brought by the PCJF and gave it until Friday to issue permits for free speech activities or face legal action.
The Trump Presidential Inaugural Committee, funded by large corporations and millionaire donors, worked with the National Park Service to delay the issuing of permits for as long as possible. Since the entire world will be watching this event, Trump wants the voice of the resistance to be silenced and their First Amendment rights curtailed.
Where in the First Amendment does it say you need a PERMIT to assemble peacefully anyway?