A week ago on Monday, November 23, 2015, the organizing community in Columbus, Ohio made history. The Central Ohio Worker Center (COWC), a worker justice/immigrant rights organization partnered with Planned Parenthood, a sexual and reproductive rights organization, OSU Coalition for Black Lives, RadioTrankazos.com (an immigrant and Latinx run internet radio) and Canal Hispano TV to plan and carry out a rally outside the Donald Trump Presidential gathering.
In five days, word spread through social media, word of mouth and organizational outreach and the stage was set to protest on a cold November evening. Organizers decided to focus efforts on gathering outside in an attempt to bring as many people together on short notice and focus on in intersection of people and issues that would counter the hate of Donald Trump.
Fresh off a day long training with performance artist Guillermo Gómez-Peña from La Pocha Nostra, the Central Ohio Worker Center included Performance Art as a way to intersect justice issues. Paloma Enmei Martinez-Cruz from Ohio State University created the "Miss Illegal Ohio" character and became a rally cry exposing immigrant justice, worker dignity, women’s health, queer identity and other issues.
Over 400 people showed up, marched, rallied and listened to a diverse group of speakers including Muslims, Undocumented Immigrants, DREAMers, “Anchor Babies”, Low Wage Workers, Christian Faith Leaders, #BlackLivesMatters representatives, Refugees, Ohio State Students, and Sexual and Reproductive Rights advocates. Our objective for this protest was not simply to confront the hatred Trump’s campaign has sparked, but to build power in the Columbus justice community and to celebrate our diversity around LOVE!
Hatred and fear are very powerful emotions and Donald Trump has used them exclusively in his presidential campaign. But we also know that LOVE is stronger than hate. The Columbus community demonstrated this on that cold November evening.
The Central Ohio Worker Center is fully committed to building local power around justice, dignity, compassion, intersectionality, and LOVE in Columbus. While carrying out our mission of worker and immigrant justice, we acknowledge that our work intersects with women’s health, refugee settlement and empowerment, the #BlackLivesMatter movement, and conscious people of faith in our community. We look forward to growing this community together.
We need your help to continue this fight for justice for all. Contact the Central Ohio Worker Center for more information.