Trump rallies haven’t always been so successful in keeping protesters out of the venues themselves — which Thursday night was the Pacific Amphitheater at the Orange County fairgrounds in Costa Mesa, California.
The amphitheater accommodates about 31,000 people, and it was stuffed to the gills. Hundreds of people were unable to get in. And on Thursday evening, that included almost all of the protesters.
So the anti-Trump crowd did what they’ve done in a number of other places: they protested outside the venue, with an increasing level of noise and vituperation. They waited around until after the rally, which ran for over two hours, in apparent hopes of mixing it up with departing Trump supporters. (Late-breaking video seems to show that they did manage to whack one Trump guy around pretty badly. See below.)
Local news footage and reporting shows the protesters being (literally) herded down the street away from the amphitheater after the rally, by a horse-mounted patrol from the sheriff’s department.
(General language warning for all the videos.)
Law enforcement did a good job of keeping separation between the anti-Trump and pro-Trump crowds, in large part because the pro-Trump crowds had no interest in starting fights with anyone, and for the most part simply left the rally when it was over, heading for their cars in the parking lot.
But the antics of the anti-Trump protesters — and of at least one apparent pro-Trump stunt driver — produced some viral video clips. In one, the anti-Trump forces rock a police cruiser back and forth, trying to turn it over. This might be more dramatic if Angelenos didn’t turn out like clockwork to do exactly the same thing whenever the Lakers make it to the final four.
In another, the prevalence of Mexican flags among protesters shouting “F**k Trump!” is obvious. (Watching the late night local news on the ABC affiliate, I was a bit surprised to hear the reporter on scene tell the anchors in the studio that many of the people protesting are “in the country illegally.” The MSM have had a strict policy for some time of referring to illegals as “undocumented,” and never uttering the syllables “illegal” in connection with them.)
This video is typical in that its title suggests a scrum between “Trump lovers and Trump haters,” when the reality is that the people you see in the video are all Trump haters. I’m not a Trump fan, but it’s essential to be honest about what’s going on here. Trump supporters are not spilling into the streets to have fights with Trump haters. Trump haters are out flailing around and acting like morons on their own. The media are creating a false narrative about two-sidedness in these events. It isn’t there.
I have no doubt that when more videos are eventually posted, we’ll see the banners of the usual rad-left suspects in the crowd. Most of the videos posted so far have shown the protesters at night, after the rally, rather than when the sun was out and it was easier to see who had banners there.
An apparent Trump supporter did create a stir by driving into an intersection and doing doughnuts around protesters for a minute or so, before speeding off. In the video, you can see a sheriff’s deputy watching the car and staring after it when it speeds away. They’ll catch the guy.
(The action starts at the 1:12 mark.)
ABC 7 has video from the air.
Inevitably, some protesters decided to go topless. (The satellite feed tick is annoying, but you only have to watch the first minute or so).
As this was going to post, a new video popped up on YouTube showing the aftermath of an apparent beating, administered by anti-Trump thugs to a Trump supporter. (A number of people are standing around helpfully recording the event.) It’s hard to make out everything that happened, but the victim is definitely covered in blood when the video-recorder gets through to him and we can see his face.
Just another Thursday night in America in 2016? Trump will have a lot more events scheduled in California between now and the primary vote on 7 June. It’s important to note that I’m not making excuses for Trump supporters, some of whom say and do things I wouldn’t say or do. I don’t think excuses should be made for them. See the remarks made by some of the assembled Trump supporters in this video, for example (inside the amphitheater):
But to say that is not to say that Trump supporters are to be condemned as having no right or reason on their side. They have genuinely been treated badly by their own government for years. Many of them don’t really understand what the bad treatment consists of; they blame the wrong things and/or the wrong people. But they have, in fact, been treated with cynicism and contempt by their public officials, and they have legitimate grievances. Anyone who looks at them and thinks that our status quo of the last few decades needs to continue, regardless of the burdens it unjustly heaps on these people, is the problem. Anyone who lies about Trump supporters, when radical-left rent-a-mobs go out to make trouble, is the problem. Don’t be one of those anyones.