SAN DIEGO - Two rallies were scheduled Monday ahead of President Donald Trump's visit to San Diego Tuesday.
The first was held at 11 a.m. at Chicano Park to prepare for and condemn Trump's visit, which will reportedly include a stop in Otay Mesa to view the 30-foot-tall border barrier prototypes, one of which Trump hopes will be used as a model to wall off the U.S.-Mexico border.
The demonstration was held by a slate of community and activist groups, including Alliance San Diego, the San Diego Immigrant Rights Consortium, American Friends Service Committee and the local UNITE HERE union. Organizers say the rally showed San Diegans are united against the "wasteful, harmful and irresponsible" plan to build the wall.
Congressman Juan Vargas spoke before the large gathering of media Monday saying Trump "is not welcome here."
The activist group Union del Barrio held a news conference and rally outside the Federal Building at 880 Front St. at 5 p.m. Monday ahead of Trump's visit. The group has been active in protesting Trump's policies.
"We will continue defending our community next week when this fascist president visits indigenous Kumeyay land to decide what prototype of use along this imposed border that divides families and further alienates Mexicans on both sides of the border," the group said.
Maria Fernanda Madrigal, who has lived in San Diego for 18 years, attended the rally. She is a San Diego State graduate and DACA recipient who is making sure her voice is heard.
“We want to make sure he knows that the City of San Diego does not want that wall, not only because of the physical wall but also because of what that would mean for the undocumented community here in our city," Madrigal said. "It’s going to affect our communities by increasing the presence of border patrol and ICE in our community."
Madrigal has a 5-year-old son. She says that thought terrifies her if she were to lose her protection under DACA.
“It’s my biggest fear to know that one day I might drop him off at school and I might not be able to pick him up,” Madrigal said.
One of the speakers described the wall as "a representation of hatred and divisiveness."
Trump is scheduled to arrive at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar Tuesday.