Anti-Trump protests planned in Pittsburgh Wednesday
While two protests are planned in response to Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s visit to Pittsburgh on Wednesday, the one on Eric Rickin’s Fox Chapel lawn is the most uniquely Pittsburgh.
Homemade signs at his home read “Trump Likes Hunt’s Ketchup,” “Trump Hates Pierogies,” and “Trump Moved My Parking Chair.”
A photo of the display posted to Chatham University’s Food Studies Program Facebook page went viral Tuesday. Professor Alice Julier posted it with the caption “So Pittsburgh. So Food Studies …”
Using food as a form of protest is “so Pittsburgh” because “in Pittsburgh what defines you as a person and a place is how people feel about their food,” Julier said.
“I had pierogies growing up in New York, but here it is so different — it is such an emotional attachment. It is what brings us all together and gives us that identity,” she said.
Julier explained that the Hunt’s reference appeared to be a jab at Trump using something other than the Pittsburgh-based Heinz brand.
“Mixing local food loyalty with questioning whether a politician would support it is a cool way of bringing people together,” she said.
Rickin, who could not be reached for comment, has a Facebook page promoting a “Trump Absurd Sign Rally” in Market Square Saturday afternoon, three days after Trump’s visit.
Trump will tape a Fox News program at Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Hall & Museum in Oakland at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday; doors open at 2:30 p.m. Afterward, he will hold a rally at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center, Downtown, at 7 p.m. The events are open to the public.
A “Protest Trump’s visit to Pittsburgh” Facebook page sponsored by Answer Pittsburgh, a self-described anti-war group with chapters in Pittsburgh, Arizona and Chicago, encourages people to protest at the convention center: “Join us to say loud and clear that Pittsburgh does NOT welcome racist, anti-immigrant, anti-worker bigots like Trump.” More than 1,100 people have indicated they plan to attend.
From 4 to 7 p.m. Wednesday in the hours prior to the Pirates home game against Detroit, Braddock Mayor John Fetterman, who is running in the Democratic primary for U.S. Senate, is holding a “Trump is a Jagoff” event on the Roberto Clemente Bridge at Sixth Street and Ft. Duquesne Boulevard. He said he will be encouraging his supporters to “protest Trump’s disgraceful and un-American stance on immigration and human rights in this country.”
Fetterman will encourage people to support him in the Senate race and to support Sen. Bernie Sanders, D-Vermont, for president. The Clemente Bridge is closed to road traffic and open only to pedestrians before each Pirates home game.
Salena Zito is a Tribune-Review staff writer.