Donald Trump protestors, supporters face off outside Fountain Hills rally

Hundreds of Donald Trump protesters stood outside the candidate's Fountain Hills rally Saturday afternoon, carrying signs that read, "Love Trumps Hate," "Dump Trump" and "Stand Against Racism."

After political rallies turned violent in Chicago and Salt Lake City, the presidential hopeful increased security at the rally with the help of Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio's additional manpower, according to The Fountain Hills Times

More security, however, didn't stop protesters from voicing their opinion in a sea of Trump supporters. Before Trump arrived, a large group of protesters blocked an entrance into the town using a barricade of cars to stop traffic, and three were arrested

Some of the protesters even chained themselves to the cars to slow police efforts to break up the barricade. Despite the protest, violence did not ensure. While there was a palpable tension in the air, protesters and supporters did mesh more peacefully than their predecessors.

Related: Donald Trump promises change, border reform at Fountain Hills rally

Mackenzie Loving, sustainability and public policy senior, held a sign that read "Kindness Trumps Intolerance" and said she was there to peacefully protest. 

"We're here to show our disapproval of Trump, with all of his supporters here," Loving said. "I'm pretty disappointed that this is happening in my hometown. I'm seeing people who I previously thought of as leaders of our community supporting Trump."

Loving said she walked around the rally area silently holding her sign since 8:30 a.m.

"We've been called scumbags, uneducated, homos," she said. "They think anyone who protests Trump is on welfare, too." 

Like Loving, mechanical engineering senior James Brady said he was trying to encourage political discussion about the presidential candidate's views on war.

"I'm proud, as an American, to not commit war crimes," Brady said. "Donald Trump has said a lot of things that imply that he would very explicitly target civilian populations."

Holding a sign that read "Targeting non-combatants is not an American value," Brady said he was protesting to "show that everybody in Arizona isn't for him."

Protester and Mesa Community College student Sebastian Valin wore a "F--k Trump" shirt and said he was at the rally to fight for peace and equality. 

"We're trying to show that Trump is not right for the country," Valin said. "In a sense, he creates a fascist like movement by promoting racism and hate." 

The candidate's supporters weren't afraid to voice their opinions, too. 

Sandee Appell, a 65-year-old Scottsdale resident and Trump supporter, said she was there to show hear what the candidate had to say. 

"I'm here to show my support for his views," Appell said. "Even though he doesn't present things like a typical politician, I appreciate what he has to say and millions of people do."

Appell said she was upset that the protesters infringed on her rally experience, as they held large signs in front of her, blocking her view of Trump. 

"I resent what the opposition is doing," she said. "They're obstructing my view right now. There are some girls that are topless in protest, and there are kids around."

Appell said protesters need to have respect and began chanting "Build A Wall" along with her fellow supporters. 


Reach the reporter at ambice@asu.edu or follow @alliebice on Twitter.

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