Activists push for Trump's impeachment and more to combat white supremacy

Activists at twin protests in San Francisco and Oakland Wednesday pushed for Donald Trump's impeachment and for more to be done to combat white supremacy. 

"It's so easy for us to get numb because we hear about these tragedies so often," said songwriter-activist Diana Gameros, addressing a crowd at 24th  and Mission streets in the city.

As she spoke, a large poster with the photos of El Paso's massacre victims was hoisted high.

"I actually grew up going to the house of these two people," said Gameros, her voice emotional, as she pointed to the faces of Sara Esther Regalado and Adolfo Cerros Hernandez, two of eight Mexican nationals killed inside the Walmart store.

The killer's own manifesto revealed racial animosity toward Latinos.   

Speakers, in the heart of San Francisco's Mission District, expressed alarm about keeping immigrant families intact, and keeping them safe.

"Words have the power to destroy," said Cristina Morales, activist with the National TPS Alliance.  
"I never felt so small before but you know what ? Love makes us stronger."

TPS stands for Temporary Protected Status, an immigration status held by thousands of people, but in danger of termination by the Trump Administration, unless courts rule otherwise. 

"We own houses, we are business-people, we work really hard, and that's why we're here fighting," said Morales. 

On the other side of the Bay, Oakland's protest also drew about sixty people, but was noisier and more political. 

"Immigrants yes, white supremacy no, Donald Trump has got to go," shouted participants, lining International Boulevard at 34th Street, near the Fruitvale BART station. 

Demonstrators decried mass shootings- and the hate behind them- and shifted blame to the rhetoric of President Trump. 

"Whatever words he might have been forced to say in front of a teleprompter, we know what he really is," said Yvetter Felarca, an organizer with BAMN, By Any Means Necessary. "White supremacists are not welcome in El Paso, they're not welcome here in Oakland, they're not welcome anywhere, because they don't belong in an America of diversity and democracy."   

Many demonstrators held signs calling for Trump's removal from office.  

"We say to Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats, stop playing games, it's time to act, and impeach him," said Maricruz Lopez of BAMN. 

Passing drivers sent a chorus of agreement, by honking their horns. 

Oakland City Council member Dan Kalb said the border camps motivated him to attend the protest. 

"What an embarrassment those camps are, to our society and the true American way of life," said Kalb, "because this is America, we're supposed to be a place that welcomes immigrants, not pushes them aside." 

For others in the crowd, Trump's indecision on guns is intolerable.   

"He's refused to have any changes on banning assault weapons," complained Megan O' Neil of Berkeley, " and that's a crime, truly a crime." 

One protester admitted she hadn't attended a demonstration since the 60's- until now.  

"I just got mad a couple of days ago because of the shootings," said Shirley Smallwood of Oakland. 
"I go into stores now and I have to look for every exit before I start my shopping, looking for anywhere I can hide, just in case. We're not supposed to live like that!" 

At both gatherings, people found comfort and confidence by coming together,  

But Gameros tearful words about her former neighbors reminded the audience, the couple could have been anyone's cherished friend. 

"They ended up dying in each other's arms and I just want to keep that memory of them, just being in love, in heaven now," said Gameros, before singing a song in tribute.