Trump Rally vs. Bernie Rally

March 5th, on the first sunny Saturday of Spring Break, I joined the crowd of thousands at the CFE Arena for a Donald J. Trump rally. I chose to accept my friend’s invitation to the rally for purely educational purposes, and the moment we arrived, I knew I would not be disappointed. To the right of the arena, hundreds of protesters gathered with signs and began chanting. To the left of the arena, hundreds of families, couples, and UCF students stood in line with their Make America Great Again hats and t-shirts.

          

In line, men yelled “socialist!” to the young girl walking by wearing a Bernie Sanders 2016 t-shirt. In the arena, the seats were almost completely filled with men and women of all different ages and ethnicities.

 

A lady was introduced before Trump and spoke about an illegal immigrant brutally murdering her son. His hands and feet were tied behind his back at the time of his death and before the speaker was able to finish her story, the audience began to loudly cheer “BUILD A WALL.”

         

The next speech was given by a lady who had been recently fired from Disney World. Her speech was about the hundreds of Americans who lose their jobs to immigrants every year. She stated that Indians and Asians are taking over the IT world, because they work for cheaper wages on their H-2B Visas. She concluded her speech by stating that no American should have to train a foreigner to do his or her job when he or she is fired. This again, prompted the audience to loudly cheer about building a wall.

 

Trump’s arrival was delayed by a half hour, but when he entered the arena, almost everyone in the audience stood and waved their silent majority signs. He opened his speech by stating that ten thousand people were outside unable to get in because there were already too many fans. Throughout the speech, he defended the size of his hands, defended his net worth against Forbes which listed it as lower, and of course he guaranteed that Mexico would pay for the wall he plans to have built.

 

On average, every six to seven minutes, Trump would yell “Get them out of here!” as security rushed to escort protesters out. At one point, three men walked to the row closest to Trump, ripped up a poster, and threw the pieces onto the floor while Trump left his podium to stare them down. When they left, Trump assured the crowd that he absolutely loves protesters interrupting his rally. A man a couple of rows down from me wearing his Confederate flag shirt stood up and clapped as this happened.  

 

It was truly interesting to see how many patriotic Floridians gathered to show their love for a candidate, and at least ten times chanted U.S.A.! However, it had been a long day and my friends and I decided to leave. When we left the arena, we were shocked to notice that the number of protesters if not tripled, had doubled in size.

I decided to stick around a bit to see what the protesters had to say, because I thought it was only fair, seeing as I previously did the same for Donald Trump.

The messages on the signs were blunt and the chants were clearly filled with passion.

 

 

Three days later, I again accepted my friend’s invitation to a political rally. This time, we were going to see Bernie Sanders at the James L. Knight Center in Miami. We again arrived early, and walked over to the Whole Foods across the street. Here, I noticed an abundance of men and women wearing “Feel the Bern” shirts, and purchasing an organic pre-rally snack.

 

A young woman joining the line of people waiting to enter stopped and yelled, “We are all family!” This prompted clapping and teenagers behind me chanted “Feel The Bern!”

 

When the rally began, a lady was introduced before Bernie Sanders and spoke about graduating college $28,000 in debt. She explained to the audience how she was not only the first high school graduate in her family, but also the first college graduate and first U.S citizen. She was interrupted by cheering and audience members raising their ‘A Future to Believe In’ signs.

 

The second speaker, Tulsi Gabbard, had resigned as Vice Chair of the DNC in order to support Bernie Sanders. Her speech was about the importance of having an intelligent thinker as Commander-in-Chief. She spoke about her experience in war and how it taught her about the necessity of having a leader who exercises prudence and good judgement.

 

Sanders arrived to the stage ten minutes after anticipated and the crowd enthusiastically greeted him with screams of excitement. He opened his speech by telling the audience the importance of remembering that we all stand on equal ground. Throughout the speech, he explained that all children should grow up knowing they have a chance to go to college, that climate change is very real, and of course, that wealth inequality is a serious issue ruining America’s economy.

 

Sanders stated that Republicans want the government to stay extremely uninvolved, except when it comes to telling a woman what she can and cannot do with her body.  He spoke to the crowd about mass incarceration, but also about the fact that citizens should not view police officers as an oppressive force. On average, every three minutes, he was interrupted by cheering and applause. He also laughed when audience members finished his sentences for him, which happened many times.

 

The abundance of young adults in the crowd was astonishing. I noticed many students in the audience wearing private school uniforms, which implied that they came straight from school. He closed by emphasizing the importance of avoiding bigotry, racism, sexism, and hatred. Bernie Sanders then reminded the audience that “love always trumps hate.”

 

Some of my friends often say that their vote makes no difference… but it does! Every single vote counts. Voting is your opportunity to be heard. Casting your vote gives you the chance to voice your opinion on important issues that affect the country. Take an hour out of your day to go to the polls and help ensure a better future for you and your community!