People take part in the "Not My President's Day" rally on Presidents Day in New York, the United States, on Feb. 20, 2017. Tens of thousands of people attended the rally to protest against U.S. President Donald Trump on Monday. (Xinhua/Wang Ying)
By Xinhua writers Yang Shilong, Yuan Yue,
NEW YORK, Feb. 20 (Xinhua) -- Thousands of Americans took to the streets Monday across the country to protest the policies of President Donald Trump, turning this year's Presidents Day into "Not My President's Day".
The federal holiday, celebrated on the third Monday of February, is originally in honor of the first president George Washington, and now serves as an occasion to honor all the presidents who have served the country.
"HAPPY PRESIDENTS DAY - MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!" is what Trump, who has been in White House for just a month, tweeted at 6:33 AM Monday.
Yet the new president might not be that happy in the day as a series of "Not My Presidents Day" rallies were held in major cities like Washington D.C., New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Atlanta.
According to organizers of the rally, some 13,000 demonstrators who filled Central Park West in New York, chanted "This is what Democracy looks like," "Hey hey, ho ho, Donald Trump has got to go," and "No ban, no wall, the Trump regime has got to fall."
"While we acknowledge that Donald Trump holds the current title, the policies he's trying to put in place are not the beliefs shared by the majority of the people," said Nova Calise, a television production manager and one of the organizers of New York event,
"He (Trump) is not my president, the people did not elect him, he lost the popular vote by almost 3 million votes," college student Eliza told Xinhua.
Most protestors shared Eliza's view by waving signs including "Worst President Ever", "Hate does not make America great", "What actually makes America great? immigrants, women...". They say Trump has attacked everything they stand for, from his crack down on immigration to his party's response to climate change and the environment.
This made Olga Mangual, in her 60s, appeared very lonely in the crowds. Wearing a sign reading "I am a Trumpist", Mangual shouted pro-Trump slogans at her most.
"I voted for him (Trump). I want him to put Americans first." Mangual told Xinhua. "I am not saying these people are wrong, but he is not a politician, he's made mistakes, let us give him a chance."
Historically, protests against new presidents are not unusual, said David Meyer, a sociology professor at the University of California, Irvine, and author of "The Politics of Protest," in an interview with CNN.
"What is unusual is the vigor, speed, size, and number of issues that they're challenging Trump on," Meyer said. "To have a sustained (protest), every weekend, every couple of days, and it's a different issue -- I've never seen anything like this before."
Just a day earlier, about 1,000 people gathered in Times Square for the "I Am Muslim Too" rally in solidarity with the Muslim community in the city.