In the hours preceding dawn, five women dressed in long red cloaks and white bonnets gathered on a street corner by Belmont University. These Handmaid’s Tale protestors held up a spray-painted bedsheet: “PRO-LIFE IS A LIE. TRUMP LET 222K DIE.” One woman held a plastic coat hanger.
Handmaid’s Tale protestors were inspired by the book and subsequent television series of the same name. In the fictitious world of the series, women trapped in reproductive slavery wear red cloaks and white bonnets. In our world, Handmaid’s Tale protestors commonly appear to protest pro-life bills and “oppressive” legislators.
— WKRN News 2 (@WKRN) October 22, 2020
By noon, the protestors had left. The sign remained on the corner and was tucked into itself, possibly indicating an intent to return later that evening. Police had sectioned off all entrances to campus, including some of the inner roads. Only students and official personnel were allowed on campus.
Others had arrived after those first protestors left – reporters, debate attendees, and many supporters of President Trump. One man, Bob Kunst, set up a “Trump 2020” booth about a block down the same stretch of road as the Handmaid’s Tale protestors.
Kunst told The Tennessee Star that he hadn’t seen the protestors or any others all morning. In fact, he reported seeing mostly Trump supporters walking the streets. The closest thing to protesting he’d heard were a few “F*** Trump!” yells from cars driving past.
“I came all the way here from Florida – I’m a registered Democrat, have been all my life, and I’m 78. This is my 192nd effort for the Trump campaign. I’m upset with what’s happened to the Democratic Party. I call ’em ‘Demo-rats.'”
Other Trump supporters walked around wearing the red “Make America Great Again” hats, “TRUMP 2020” t-shirts, and some wore Trump flags as capes. A black truck looped the campus continually, towing a black trailer promoting “The Silent Majority,” a pro-Trump organization.
In the apparent minority were Biden supporters. Several students walked by wearing t-shirts promoting justice for Breonna Taylor. One woman walked around with a “Biden-Harris 2020” sign.
No major protests were occurring that afternoon. Pedestrians traveled the streets and campus without any further disruptions.
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