Corbin, 14, holds a “Love Trumps Hate” sign in Westlake Park on Inauguration Day. Image captured by Casey Jaywork.

Middle School Students Explain Why They Protested Against Trump Today

Today’s inauguration of Donald Trump as President has seen massive protests across the country. Here in Seattle, public school students are joining the throngs of anti-Trump marchers to voice their opposition.

Since those students are technically playing hooky, they’ll be marked as absent, according to a letter Seattle Public Schools sent to students’ families on January 13:

“The district supports students’ rights to express their views in a peaceful manner. However, when civic engagement includes missing class, there are appropriate and standardized consequences. Students should understand that if they choose to participate in the January 20 walkout, they will receive an unexcused absence per board policy.”

After civil rights lawyer and parent Neil Fox forwarded the letter, Seattle councilmember Kshama Sawant called on the district to support student civics on this dark, dark day. From her blog:

“SPS needs to recognize these protests as legitimate actions in defense of the rights of students, their families, and fellow community members who are directly threatened by President-Elect Trump’s racist, anti-immigrant, Islamophobic, misogynistic, anti-LGBTQ, and anti-worker agenda. Furthermore, Seattle is a sanctuary city, and we have to uphold the right of everyone to peaceful protest and assembly.”

Spoiler: lots of students walked out and showed up to protest. This afternoon we spoke with six protesters under the age of 18, asking why they’d come out and what their complaints were. Here are the answers, in their own words:

Mew, sophomore at Summit Sierra Public High School

Miranda, 17, Chief Sealth International High School

Corbin, 14, Lichton Springs K-8

Pearl, 13, Pathfinder K-8

Naom, 13, Brier Terrace Middle School

Wyatt, 15, Nova High School

More in News & Comment

Protestors gather at SeaTac’s Families Belong Together rally. Photo by Alex Garland
Seattle’s Separated Children

A local non-profit houses several immigrant youths who were separated from their parents at the border. But for how long?

Katrina Johnson, Charleena Lyles’ cousin, speaks at a press conference for De-Escalate Washington’s I-940 on July 6, 2017. Photo by Sara Bernard
Communities of Color Respond to Police Chief Best’s Nomination

Although its a mixed bag for some, the families affected by police shootings say she’s the best one for the job.

While King County Metro has been testing out several trial electric buses since since 2016, the agency aims to have a fully electric bus fleet by 2040. Photo by SounderBruce/Flickr
King County Rolls on With Its Electric Bus Fleet Plans

With an overhaul set by 2040, a new report shows the economic and health benefits of going electric.

Nikkita Oliver speaks at a July 17 No New Youth Jail press conference in front of the construction site of the King County Youth Detention Center. Photo by Josh Kelety
King County Youth Detention Center Moves Forward Despite Opposition

As community criticism of the project mounts, King County tries to take a middle road.

Trouble in Tacoma

A cannabis producer has been shut down for “numerous and substantial violations.”

Between Seattle’s $15 minimum wage and the new no-poach cause agreement, Washington has been leading the nation in advancing fast food workers’ rights. Photo by Fibonacci Blue/Flickr
Washington AG’s Deal Grants Mobility to Fast Food Workers Nationwide

Seven fast food chains have agreed to end no-poaching policies that economists say cause wage stagnation.

The Carlton Complex wildfire burned in north-central Washington state in 2014. Photo by Jason Kriess/Wikimedia Commons
King County Burn Ban Starts This Weekend

Other counties across the state have already enacted similar restrictions.

Numerous complaints against King County Sheriff’s deputies for issues like excessive force and improper search and seizure weren’t investigated due to internal misclassification, a new report says. Photo by Oran Viriyincy/Flickr
Report Finds Complaints Against King County Sheriff’s Deputies Weren’t Investigated

An outside review says that allegations of excessive force and racially-biased policing weren’t pursued.

Most Read