Home Featured News Crisis in Gaza draws protests in downtown Grand Rapids

Crisis in Gaza draws protests in downtown Grand Rapids

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Diane Baum, third from left, and Tom Burke, second from right, are joined by fellow pro-Palestinian protesters Monday in front of the federal building in downtown Grand Rapids.

By Sean P. Mulhall Editor-In-Chief

Protesters gathered in front of the Grand Rapids federal building Monday to protest the crisis in the Gaza strip. Both the Israeli and Palestinian side of the issue were represented.

Nearly 140 people that identified as “Protesting in solidarity with Palestine” gathered on the corner of Ottawa and Michigan around 4 p.m. Diane Baum, Grand Rapids, posted on her Facebook page about her involvement.

“The only reason the pro-Israeli people showed up is because of my post,” Baum said. “That’s the last time I advertise my involvement.”

Protester Tom Burke, Grand Rapids, expects even more people to show up next time.IMG_9576 resz

“I think we will have at least 150 people, and that’s lowballing it,” Burke said. “We aren’t mad at the pro-Israeli protesters. It’s the American government I have a problem with.”

Burke went onto explain his group’s philosophy.

“We have three demands,” Burke said. “One, Israel stop war now. Two, the U.S. stops giving $3.1 billion to Israel, stops all aid. Three, people demand peace.”

Protesters plan to meet in front of the federal building, once again, Friday from 4 to 6 p.m.