Day three of the Democratic National Convention featured more of the protests and party fervor that have energized Philadelphia since Monday.
Following Tuesday's nomination of Hillary Clinton as the first female nominee of a major political party, Wednesday’s prime-time speakers included Tim Kaine, a Virginia senator and Clinton's running mate, and President Barack Obama.
“We don’t fear the future; we shape it, embrace it, as one people, stronger together than we are on our own," Obama said in his speech Wednesday. "That’s what Hillary Clinton understands—this fighter, this stateswoman, this mother and grandmother, this public servant, this patriot—that’s the America she’s fighting for."
Clinton walked onto the stage to join Obama after he concluded his remarks, marking her first live appearance at the convention.
Earlier in the day, North Carolina's delegation to the convention heard remarks from Brandon Davis, a Clinton campaign senior staff member, who said that the campaign is committed to a 50-state strategy, incorporating local and state candidates and issues into the national campaign. The delegation also had the opportunity to meet with U.S. Senate candidate Deborah Ross—who is running against incumbent Republican Sen. Richard Burr.
“You can just look at the floor and you see the difference [between the Democratic convention and the Republican convention] in just the diversity in the group,” said Patsy Keever, Trinity '69 and chair of North Carolina Democratic Party. “When you have that much diversity of people with different ethnic backgrounds and experiences coming from different walks of life, it’s not going to be smooth. We represent America. We represent all people.”
North Carolina natives Brooks Bell, Trinity ’01, and Rep. G.K. Butterfield, chair of the Congressional Black Caucus, also addressed the convention Wednesday. Bell focused her speech on how House Bill 2—the bill signed by Gov. Pat McCrory that overturned non-discrimination protections for LGBTQ people—has negatively impacted North Carolina’s economy.
“[Clinton’s] relentless dedication to serve America over the past 30 years has been marked by hard choices—which makes this historic achievement all the more impressive,” Bell said in her speech. “Her tenacity and toughness—her seasoned judgment—is exactly what we need in a president.”
Butterfield, who was joined onstage with members of the Congressional Black Caucus, said Republican nominee Donald Trump was "not qualified" to be president. Celebrities including Star Jones, Sigourney Weaver and Lee Daniels also made appearances Wednesday evening.
However, the convention and its attempt to unify the Democratic party after a divisive primary process has been marred by dissent and disunity.
“Philadelphia is a hub for revolution,” said sophomore Ahmed Mohamed, who is working as a Markham Group-DNC intern. “There is a discrepancy between what the protesters want and what the officials actually believe.”
Frances Reynolds, a resident of Cary, North Carolina and registered Democrat, noted that she faces a tough decision this election cycle, as this may the first time she does not vote for the Democratic candidate for president. A supporter of Sen. Bernie Sanders, Reynolds said she was disappointed when Sanders did not receive the Democratic nomination for president.
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Sanders’s endorsement of Clinton does not sway her to vote for Clinton, she added.
“The Clintons don’t care about our country,” Reynolds said.
The dissatisfaction of Reynolds and other Sanders supporters presented itself in protests in Philadelphia. One such protest Wednesday spoke out against Clinton's involvement in the United States’ war on terror.
Sponsored by World Can’t Wait, Brandywine Peace Community, CodePink and other organizations, the “No More Endless War” protest was attended by more than 100 people and attracted a small police presence. Speakers at the protest talked about how the Obama administration has perpetuated war in the Middle East, resulting in the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people.
“There are more war crimes to come under a Hillary administration,” said Samantha Goldman, a World Can’t Wait steering committee member, in a press release.
The protest was attended by Sanders supporters, as well as those who will now support third party candidates such as Jill Stein of the Green Party and former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson of the Libertarian Party.
Freshman Destini Clarke noted that the DNC has enlivened Philadelphia.
“Driving through Philadelphia felt different but in a good way. Like something is brewing. Passion. Excitement,” Clarke wrote in an email Wednesday. “I've been in the city many many times in my life, but it never felt that way before.”