St Augustinians took a trip to support the Indivisible”Rubio Empty Suit Town Hall” in Jacksonville this last Wednesday, May 31st. A good size crowd talked to a Trump impersonator, and an empty suit that represented Senator Marco Rubio, wanting both to confront issues that seemed to be of great importance to the attendees of this Town Hall. First Coast.TV went to see what this event was all about.
Trump supporters held a rally on Monday, Feb. 28, on the grounds of the Castillo San Marcos in St Augustine, FL. Diane Scheriff introduced a series of speakers, including local party chair Bill Korach, local party secretary Eric West and others. They spoke in support of the president’s administration and the cabinet members he has been able to get confirmed by the Senate. Some spoke of the Trump “movement” and how the president won the election, while others promised to keep pressure on members of Congress to make sure they support Trump policies. Trump protesters were near, but the rally went on peacefully, and without incident.
The Indivisible movement met at the Ponte Vedra concert Hall. The venue was packed with residents of St Johns County. The Indivisible movement is based on the guide by the same name, its main goal is to resist the Trump agenda just as the Tea Party was formed to resist the Obama agenda.
Compassionate St. Augustine was proud to present “Both Sides Now: Bridging Our Differences in A Divided World,” a panel discussion grounded in civil discourse with Republicans, Democrats and those who cross party lines from St. Johns County. Frank Denton, Florida Times Union Editor-at-Large and Vice President of Journalism for Morris Communications, moderated the panel. At a time when our county, and the world are deeply divided by lines in the sand that represent political affiliations, personal beliefs, and interests, the diverse panelists focused on what each believes should happen for residents to help erase those lines and come together collaboratively, cooperatively, creatively and compassionately for the greater good locally and beyond.
The panelists (in alphabetical order) included Ron Brown, Jerry Cameron, Deltra Long, Kris Phillips, Ron Rawls, Lynn Straughan, Tracy Upchurch, and Doug Wiles.
The Willie Gallimore Center was filled for this event, with local residents eager to have this discussion.
St Augustine marched in synchronicity with hundreds of other cities in the U.S. and abroad. A march where hundreds were expected, over two thousand probably marched. The march started on the east side of the Bridge of Lions headed to the Plaza de la Constitucion, where the marchers heard guest speakers, and listened to musicians play folk music.
On Tuesday, November 15th, downtown St. Augustine saw protesters at 12 Noon and 5:30PM in a nationwide day of action in solidarity with those at Standing Rock, and demand the Federal government and the Army Corps reject the Dakota Access pipeline.
The Army Corps fast-tracked the Dakota Access Pipeline without proper consultation, and as a result, bulldozers are now approaching Standing Rock. But with coordinated, massive demonstrations across the country, we’ll make it clear that we will not allow the sacrifice of Indigenous rights, our water, or our climate.
Right now protesters feel they have to keep the pressure on President Obama to do what’s right while he’s still in office and stop the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL). Indigenous leaders are calling on people to take to the streets and disrupt “business-as-usual” one week after the election to demand that President Obama’s Army Corps of Engineers and the incoming administration stop the Dakota Access Pipeline.
In solidarity with the Sioux Water Protectors at Standing Rock, protesters demonstrated against the banking institutions which are funding the Dakota Access Pipeline, to demand that they withdraw from the pending loan that would make DAPL possible.
Banks are more susceptible to public pressure than the big oil and gas companies, as they rely on their image and brand. 2 of the 17 banks directly funding DAPL have branches in downtown St Augustine: Wells Fargo and Bank of America. Protesters were asking people to close their accounts with Wells Fargo, Bank of America, and a dozen more banks financing DAPL.
First Coast.TV followed the elections locally and nationally by visiting the places where people were gathering to find out the results. At 1:20 am First Coast.TV called it.
Four brave souls of the Green Party gathered at the Old Market Pavilion on Plaza de la Constitucion, across from the Bridge of Lions. Plaza de la Constitucion in downtown St. Augustine (King Street at Bridge of Lions). It was First Friday Art Walk. First Coast.TV got a chance to get their thoughts on the election and why the Green Party.
Jill Stein’s recent protest against the Dakota Access Pipeline in North Dakota, echoes her calling for an immediate halt in all new fossil fuel infrastructure and exploration (fracking), and an emergency transition to 100% clean renewable energy. Jill supports completely abolishing student debt. You can read Jill Stein’s full platform online www.jill2016.com.
Donald Trump on Monday the 24th of October, packed the St Augustine Amphitheater to the rim, with many disappointed supporters not being able to get in. T-shirts and buttons sold like hot cakes outside of the venue. When Donald appeared at 3:10pm the crowd went crazy. New York Mayor Guiliani pumped up the crowd just before his appearance and the rest went as expected.
Flagler College at the Gamache-Koger Auditorium in St Augustine, FL showed the debate on the big screen to a crowd mostly of democrats from the student body, though there were some Trump supporters and undecided voters among the crowd. At times the crowd would react to something said by the candidates as if they were spectators at a boxing match. First Coast.TV spoke to the attendees before the debate and after to get the vibe of the crowd.