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Thousands of demonstrators were marching in the streets of New York City Wednesday night to protest President-elect Donald Trump, weaving through traffic in midtown to get to Trump Tower, where police were prepared for the crowds.
Hundreds of people gathered in Union Square by the time the demonstration began at 6 p.m., despite light rain. There were scattered chants of “Not my president” to “Black lives matter” to “Bernie!”
People at the Union Square protest, hosted by Socialist Alternative, then began marching more than 40 blocks uptown to picket outside Trump Tower in midtown.
Teacher Julia Dunn told NBC 4 New York, “There’s a man who’s the human embodiment of hate who’s going to become our next president, so the best thing we can do is try to connect with people who are representing love and connection.”
“On the subway ride here, everyone was just extremely tense and there was this crazy air — so dark — and if that’s the result of our presidential election, something has to happen,” she added. “I don’t know what the next steps are yet but I’m here to support the people around me and
A separate Columbus Circle demonstration, meanwhile, was hosted by the anti-racism group Answer Coalition. That event started at 5:30 p.m., and there were chants of “Donald Trump, go away, racist, sexist, anti-gay.” They also marched to Trump Tower, where police were putting up barricades as they braced for demonstrators.
As they weaved through the streets of midtown to get to Trump Tower at 57th Street and Fifth Avenue, protesters faced threats of arrest from NYPD, who announced: “You are unlawfully in the roadway and blocking vehicular traffic. You are ordered to leave the roadway and utilize the available sidewalk. If you do so voluntarily, no charge will be placed against you. If you remain in the roadway and refuse to utilize the sidewalk, you will be placed under arrest and charged with disorderly conduct.”
It wasn’t immediately clear if police were making arrests.
The Facebook events for demonstrations in Union Square and Columbus Circle were created on Wednesday morning, with more than 10,000 Facebook users responding that they would be present at the protests.
There was also at least one instance of election-related vandalism in the city on Wednesday. Someone appeared to have written the words “I will kill you Trump” on a subway train window, though it’s not clear when the vandal wrote the message.
The NYPD said officers responded to the location, but the vandalism had been removed by the time they arrived on scene.
Despite spending his entire life in New York City, Trump was not a popular choice in the Big Apple on Election Day. He was beaten by Clinton in every borough except Staten Island. He also lost the popular vote statewide by nearly a 2-to-1 margin.