An Arizona woman turned the local Confederate monuments in her town to "2nd Place Participation" trophies after hearing comments from President Donald Trump.
Rebecca Olsen McHood of Gilbert, Arizona, felt outraged after watching comments made by Trump that implicated both sides as the root cause of the violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, on Aug. 12. One person was killed and more than 19 were injured when a white supremacist allegedly drove his car into a crowd of counter-protesters.
McHood was also upset that Republican Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey had refused to remove Confederate monuments from state grounds, reports the Phoenix New Times.
"Somebody posted a little clip of Trump’s press conference and it was so appalling," McHood told KPNX. "I could not believe it. So I looked for the whole thing. I thought, I need to watch this in context. It was only worse, it was only worse watching it in context."
"I was just so outraged by Trump’s press conference," McHood told the Phoenix New Times. "I thought, I have to do something."
So, McHood called one of her friends and decided to make a "participation banner" to hang over one of the Confederate monuments in Gilbert.
She and her friend drove to one of the monuments and went to hang "2nd place participant" and "You lost, get over it" on the monument. A local police officer said they could not attach anything, so they just draped the two banners over and hoped they would stay.
"I wasn’t sure what was going to happen -- I wasn’t sure if people were convening at Confederate monuments around the state or not," she said. "I know we have some white power people who like to have little rallies, but they get, like 20 people, so I wasn’t too concerned for my safety."
McHood then posted pictures of their handiwork on Facebook, half expecting pushback. Instead, she says, they felt nothing but support so far.
"It felt good to do something," she said. "White supremacists don't speak for me, and it's not OK that Trump is condoning it. It's disgusting."
McHood, who is white, is also a registered Republican. She noted that she has voted for President George W. Bush, as well as former Republican nominees John McCain and Mitt Romney, and firmly believes in what the party stands for.
"I am a Republican -- I'm for fiscal responsibility, and integrity in politics," she noted. "There was a time when I believed Republicans had the upper hand in that."
McHood says she's grown tired of the "tea party" mentality in Gilbert and does not believe Trump is heading things in the right direction.
"There’s no room for racism anymore, and it’s not OK that our president is standing up for Nazis. It’s abhorrent -- I have no words for it."