On September 13, 2020, an event was planned by Trump supporters online. It was to be a show of our support for our President. Several online groups coordinated and made it happen. Being a Trump supporter who voted for him in the first election, and will be voting for him again, I felt that I had to attend.
As we approached the park area you could begin to see the enthusiasm all around. Hundreds of cars and trucks proudly displaying their American flags, their Blue Lives Matter flags supporting the police, and every variety of flag supporting Trump. There were police officers directing traffic for the event and every Miami resident that attended made sure to give them the thumbs up or thank them for their service when they passed them. One car who had their flags inside even stopped to make sure that they took out their Blue Lives Matter flag for them before entering the park. As we drove into the gathering there were people wearing t-shirts, hats, costumes, bandanas, and even masks which showed their support for our President and their love of this country.
As we drove where we were instructed to park you saw people socializing. Toby Keith’s “I’m proud to be an American” and the “Star-Spangled Banner” played over the car speakers. People were greeted as they drove through by honking and waving. There were people of all ages from their 20’s to their 80’s. They discussed the political climate, the riots and burning of American cities, and the attempted murder of the two young police officers in Los Angeles.
One hour later the cars were still pouring in, lining up one after the other as if we were ready for battle. It was evident by their lack of presence that none of the media, mainstream or local, would be covering any of this. Not even the local Hispanic channels whose offices are nearby. We did not need them, today everyone was a journalist and videographer, and we would get the story right.
When the caravan started to move out of the park there were supporters on the street at the entrance to the park who recorded every car that participated as they drove out. He was there for well over an hour as cars drove onto 87th Avenue one after the other. People had set up across the street with their flags and banners in support of the caravan and the street was also full of cars who waited patiently with their flags waiving so they could trail behind.
As we travelled through parts of Hialeah people would see us and honked in support. Many screamed “four more years” or “USA” out of their car windows. Others would give us the “thumbs up”. There were people who waited for the caravan on street corners, or their houses with their own flags and MAGA hats and jumped up and down as we all passed by. My mom who is 82 and did not vote for Trump during the first election was with me and said, “this is how it was in Cuba during elections before Castro”. Through the past three years my mom has become a Trump supporter and will be voting for him in person this November.
After it was over on my drive back home, I thought about several things. I thought about how so many people could show up in support of Trump but after they left the park, their signs and flags went back inside their cars and into their houses. I thought about how all these people feel that they need to stand firm and support this President. You commonly hear moderate liberals saying that Hispanics think this is Venezuela or Cuba, and that what happened there cannot happen here.
Most Hispanics who migrated here come from places where there was and is danger. Danger from the government and their lackeys. Danger from cartels and gangs. They came to the US to get away from the danger that they experienced first-hand. They recognize that danger when they see it. They recognize the lies the media told them in their countries, they recognize their loss of being able to speak freely about their own ideology and be arrested or censored in some other way by their own government because some neighbor snitched on them. They recognize that little by little their families were stripped of everything they had. It all seems all too familiar, and that is the part that many do not understand. There are signs.
There are a few brave people that will put out their lawn signs in their neighborhoods or drive around with their Trump flags or even a bumper sticker, but they are very few. If we compare the amount of support that was at the park, the droves of people who show up for the boat parades and the amount of social media pages supporting Trump you would never know. The only obvious reason is fear. No one wants the backlash like having your house targeted, and family being hurt in any way, especially kids and the elderly. No one wants their vehicle damaged or their flags stolen or ripped.
We have seen it on the news. This is what the left has created during this time. A nation of people fearful to express publicly in their neighborhoods, at work and driving down their street their support of a candidate in a democracy. This is one of the signs. What we, as Americans, promote for other nations, is something that fringe groups are attempting to strip from our hands within our own country, and liberal leaders are publicly supporting.
I don’t know what will happen in November, it is frightening to think that if prior to the election and during a pandemic, lives have been lost, people have been injured as a result of violence and others have lost their livelihood, what will go on after the votes are counted.