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Feb 2018

Trump Supporters Bash Sanctuary Cities at Presidents’ Day Rally

[Taken from Hudsonvalleynewsnetwork.com, Feb.20, 2018]

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Trump Supporters Bash Sanctuary Cities at Presidents’ Day Rally

TOWN OF ULSTER–Twenty-five demonstrators made a statement Monday afternoon in a rally to support President Donald Trump and his policies against illegal immigration.
Organized by the Ulster County Conservative Party, the event brought out mostly middle-aged participants holding American flags and signs that read “Secure Our Border” and “Defund Sanctuary Cities.”

Demonstrators during a pro-Trump rally in the town of Ulster on Presidents’ Day. Photo by Paula Mitchell.

Gaetana Ciarlante, one of those behind it, said the rally was meant to “celebrate a courageous man who has dedicated himself to strengthening America by restoring traditional and moral values based on the Constitution.”

At the same time, the group poked municipalities like Kingston, which last January adopted a resolution declaring itself a sanctuary city.

Trump has threatened to restrict federal funding of sanctuary cities that do not cooperate with U.S. immigration authorities.

While the issue remains tied up in the courts, locals like Ciarlante said sanctuary cities put law-abiding citizens at risk.

“I think it’s a big mistake for Kingston–or any city–to go that way,” she said. “By definition, it’s an illegal action, and it makes it dangerous for the rest of us to live there.”

William Palmer, a Washingtonville resident who mobilized support for Trump in Orange County during the 2016 campaign, said the president is moving in the right direction.

“This is about our kids and our grandkids,” he said. “As our parents and grandparents came in and were vetted strongly at Ellis Island, so do people in Mexico have to be vetted or anybody coming across the border.”


Participants in a pro-Trump rally on Monday bashed sanctuary city policies like the one adopted last January in Kingston. Photo by Paula Mitchell.

Others like Dennis Maloney, a Lagrange resident who held a sign that said “Trespassing Not Allowed,” called sanctuary cities a “lose-lose situation.”
“It encourages people to break the law,” he said. “How can that be a positive under any circumstance?”

The group chose to honor Trump on Presidents’ Day in the bustling traffic corridor just as many were looking for holiday bargains at town of Ulster stores.
As cars drove by, many motorists rolled their windows down, shouting slurs and insults at the group and flashing thumbs-down gestures.

Others honked their horns in affirmation and cheered for the group huddled under umbrellas.

“Our president is such a courageous man, and he stands up for America, even in the face of his enemies, and he’s surrounded by them on both sides,” said Ciarlante, carrying a placard that read “Women Love President Trump.”
“I agree with his agenda. I agree with his ‘Make America Great Again.'”
Ed Steedle of Saugerties echoed the sentiment and said that Trump has done more in a year than other presidents have done in their four- or eight-year terms.

“He’s helped the economy. Immigration is down 50 percent. People are getting more money in their paychecks. He’s doing a great job.”

Richard Cahill, a Kingston attorney, author and radio host, said Presidents’ Day was a good occasion to honor the man, who has taken a lot of heat this past week over issues like gun control and the alleged Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.

Cahill said while the two-hour rally remained peaceful, it did punch up a bit of drama and elicit some unmerited negative reactions.

“Unfortunately, while we’re here to rally for the country, we’ve got some knucklehead who’s here screaming and telling us we’re nuclear terrorists. It brings them all out,” he said.

  • February 20, 2018