An American flag burned and streets were blocked Friday as more than 500 marchers came face-to-face with officers during protests opposing President-elect Donald Trump.
About 150 marchers met about 6 p.m. at Historic Old Fourth Ward Park, marking the third day that protesters have spoken out against the presidential election results.
“I cannot believe that this has happened to our country," Shannon Burn told Channel 2 Action News. "People have voted for hate. Someone who is so racist and self serving. He’s a sick person. And he is not my president.”
Trump edged out Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton with 279 electoral college votes in a surprising victory early Wednesday.
Trump was criticized this political season for his sexist comments made about women on the set of the business mogul’s TV show “The Apprentice,” and statements about minorities. His campaign was also mired by sexual harassment allegations.
"It concerns me that he talks about experiences assaulting women and somehow that becomes a non-issue," protester Stephania Antonucci said.
"I think it’s time to do something about it," said Antonucci, who is also an immigrant. "Getting off the couch and actually coming out and getting on the front lines of it.”
Anaya Wilson said she protested because she doesn't agree with Trump's policies. “What concerns me the most is the stuff that has come out of his mouth that is sexist, racist, xenophobic," she said.
Protesters blocked several downtown Atlanta intersections along Ponce De Leon Avenue during the march. About 8:15 p.m., the crowd walked south along Highland Avenue through a dimly lit neighborhood.
Police presence grew from about a dozen squad cars to nearly 30 as officers worked to keep protesters from the interstate.
Georgia State Patrol had protesters at a standstill as the growing crowd tried to get onto the Downtown Connector near Freedom Parkway.
About 12 squad cars formed a blockade around demonstrators, forcing them south along Boulevard Drive. Protesters then made their way to the Jackson Street Bridge, where a few attempted to climb it. Marchers then left the ramp to the Downtown Connector, blocking several intersections before heading west along Baker Street toward Courtland Street.
Protesters burned an American flag outside the state Capitol after marching for roughly three hours into the protest, before again attempting to walk onto the interstate.
All westbound exit lanes along the Downtown Connector were blocked, according to the Georgia Department of Transportation's website.
Atlanta police did not provide information about any possible arrests, but said they are "adequately staffed" for the protests.
"We are staffed adequately, but I don't have an exact number at this time as to the total number of officers used," Atlanta police spokesman Lukasz Sajdak said, "but we are adequately staffed for the situation."
Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.
Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.