Several hundred demonstrators gathered Friday lunchtime at Sproul Plaza on the UC Berkeley campus to protest the newly inaugurated President of the United States, Donald Trump. Students from many local schools, elementary through high, also staged protests.
Students from Berkeley High School left campus to join the Cal protest. At around 1:15 p.m., BHS Vice-Principal Erin Schweng sent out an email to the BHS community to say at lunchtime, “a group of about 200 students peacefully marched from BHS up to UC Berkeley.” She said two administrators had accompanied the students, and the school had been in communication with the police to “provide a clear, traffic-free path for their route.” She said by halfway through the fourth period, “the great majority” of students were back in classes for the afternoon.
Daniel Cardozo told us via Twitter that he had heard 100 students had walked off an Albany school campus.
One reader said some roads were blocked off near the Cal campus.
Around 1 p.m., Karina Ioffee of the East Bay Times reported via Twitter that the protesters planned to march to Oakland. Oakland Police issued a Nixle alert at 1:47 p.m. stating that “a large group of demonstrators are anticipated to march from Berkeley down Telegraph Avenue to Frank Ogawa Plaza.” OPD advised drivers use alternate routes, and use caution and approach with slow speeds.
Berkeley Mayor Jesse Arreguín released a statement around 1:30 p.m. about the country’s new president. Expressing the hope that Berkeley continue to be “a beacon of light during dark times,” he wrote: “In his inaugural address, President Trump called upon building unity and providing a voice to those who have become forgotten. But this cannot be done through mass deportations that break apart families, or continuing the mass incarceration of minorities, stripping them of their rights.” And he concluded: “As we begin this new chapter in American history, we must be vigilant and raise our voice to ensure that our future is written by we the people, and not an elite handful of billionaires.”
This developing story continues to be updated after publication.