In Protest Against Trump’s Immigration Ban, 1,000 NYC Bodega Owners Closed Up Shop For A Day
On February 2nd, New Yorkers of all nationalities banded together with thousands of Yemenis and Yemeni-Americans who took to the streets of Brooklyn to protest President Trump’s recent travel ban. Many of the Yemeni and Yemeni-American protesters were bodega owners, so their protest was more than just taking to the streets to chant — they shut down their bodegas for the day to show what America looks like when you eliminate immigrants.
More than 1,000 bodegas participated in the strike to protest President Trump’s immigration ban.
— matt (@mattcarlin_) February 3, 2017
But from the looks of the messages left on bodega doors, New Yorkers seemed fine with the inconvenience.
Bodegas around New York City were closed from noon to 8 p.m.
Sign in local bodega pic.twitter.com/zsblDjS1rd
— New York Theater (@NewYorkTheater) February 2, 2017
Puerto Rican Representative Nydia Velazquez showed her support for the bodega strike.
— Rep. Nydia Velazquez (@NydiaVelazquez) February 3, 2017
Rep. Velazquez represents New York’s 7th Congressional District, which includes Brooklyn, Lower Manhattan and Queens. Velazquez was one of the first politicians to show up at JFK International Airport the day after Trump signed his controversial immigration and refugee ban executive order.
People were moved by the protest, which included moments of group prayer by American Muslims.
The Yemeni-led #bodegastrike rally is perhaps the most explicitly patriotic protest I've ever been to
— Molly Crabapple (@mollycrabapple) February 2, 2017
“You are my hope,” Yemeni-American community activist Rabyaah Althaibani told the crowd, according to Rolling Stone.
“You have come out day after day in the worst weather and stood against this racist, un-American ban,” Althaibani said. “I am begging you to keep coming out.”
People were quick to thank Lin-Manuel Miranda for giving all immigrants the rallying cry.
— Sarah Jones (@jonesarah) February 3, 2017
Indeed, immigrants do get the job done.
Miranda might not have tweeted about the strike but that didn’t stop his fans from celebrating him and “Hamilton.”
— Katie Unger (@KUngernyc) February 2, 2017
“The message that the merchants are sending is that they are part of the American fabric and the Muslim ban has devastated them and their families,” Debbie Almontaser, the woman behind the bodegea strike, told NPR.
Protesters had one message: refugees and immigrants are welcome.
— AmnestyInternational (@amnestyusa) February 2, 2017
And, most importantly, protesters wanted to remind people that the United States exists because of immigrants.
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