By ALLISON MATYUS
Students at Kenwood Academy High School, 5015 S. Blackstone Ave., gathered outside before the school day began, Jan. 19, for a National Day of Action protest in regards to President-elect Donald Trump.
About 20 students stood outside the school at the crosswalk of 51st Street and Harper Avenue to speak about their thoughts on the new president and what that may mean for them.
“When we hear that Trump has a problem with women and undocumented folks, it worries us,” said Black Youth Project 100 (BYP100) local organizer, Todd St. Hill, to Kenwood students. “Going into these next months, we have to fight for each other’s justice just as fierce as we fight for our own.”
Students from 500 cities across the country participated in similar events today in the form of protests and school walkouts ahead of tomorrow’s inauguration. The Alliance to Reclaim Our Schools (AROS), which include parent, youth, community and labor organizations aimed at reclaiming the promise of public education, organized the nationwide events.
“January 19th is a moment to come together, each in our own communities, on a single day, with a single message to Donald Trump and Betsy DeVos. Let’s join together to protect the things we care about and fight for what we want,” stated the AROS official website.
At Kenwood, students read poems and spoke about their own experiences of dealing with inequality and how they were able to overcome it.
Other organizers were also present at the morning protest, including Kenwood student Maxine Wint, an organizer of the local Youth for Black Lives and youth ambassador to the Women’s March on Washington D.C.
Wint called on the students to participate in any way they can during Saturday’s Women’s March on Chicago in protest of the Trump administration. The Jan. 21, march taking place downtown is expected to bring in a crowd of about 50,000.
Despite worried and unsure feelings of what’s to come, a Kenwood alumna, Camille Hamilton-Doyle, gave the students some advice.
“Speak what you want, speak your word and what you think is true…without stepping on someone else’s toes,” Hamilton-Doyle said. “You all are our future.”