By MIKE LEE
At a nighttime demonstration and rally on Jan. 19, DC 37 Executive Director Henry Garrido demanded action to protect health care for millions of Americans, against the onslaught promised by President Donald J. Trump, and the expected repeal of the Affordable Care Act, a decision that threatens the health insurance of tens of millions of Americans.
Citing the story of his grandmother, who was unable to receive affordable treatment for a rare form of cancer and had to leave her home in Virginia to receive treatment in Europe, Garrido spoke fiercely of the possible dangers ahead if the threatened repeal of Obamacare is carried out.
“Are we going to allow this man [Trump] to take away our health care? Are we going to allow him to take away the health care for 30 million people without a replacement plan?” Garrido told the crowd. “Are we going to allow him to dismantle everything that we have worked for?”
During his speech, Garrido vowed resistance to the Trump regime’s attempts to dismantle Obamacare.
“In this country, we spend more money than any other industrialized nation in the world on health care,” he said. “This is a matter of life and death. We would not allow repeal to happen without a fight. I pledge to you that until my dying breath, I will not allow this man to do what happened to my grandmother.”
An estimated 15,000 joined the protest called “We Stand United,” in which was held outside of the Trump International Hotel on Central Park West in Columbus Circle. Led by national political leaders and activists, along local elected officials, including Mayor Bill de Blasio, they were also joined by entertainment figures such as Rosie Perez, Robert di Niro, Alec Baldwin and the documentary filmmaker Michael Moore.
All spoke out against Trump, calling on Americans defend people’s civil rights and protect undocumented workers threatened by Trump’s implementation of draconian immigration policies and law enforcement. They said Americans should also support established policies on health care, the environment and other issues.
On the eve of Trump’s Inauguration as the 45th U.S. president, tens of thousands of demonstrators also rallied in Midtown Manhattan to protest the now sworn-in president, vowing to defend shared American values and to defy the policies of the Trump administration and the Republican-controlled U.S. Congress.