More Anti-Stay-At-Home Protests Planned For San Diego This Weekend

April 20, 2020

After last weekend saw anti stay-at-home protests in downtown San Diego and Encinitas, more protests are scheduled to take place throughout San Diego County this weekend.

Last Saturday at the almost exact one month point into a statewide stay-home order, an estimated 400 protesters converged on the streets of downtown San Diego and demanded that California reopen. The "Freedom Rally", as it was called, mirrored several similar protests staged across the country and participants could be seen carrying American flags with many wearing "Trump 2020" apparel. Additional protesters chose to stay in their vehicles and drove by honking and waving flags and signs from windows. The alleged organizer of the rally, 27-year-old Naomi Soria (who goes by Naomi Israel on Facebook) is now facing a $1,000 fine and possible jail time.

Scenes from the Encinitas protest on April 19
Following the Saturday protest in downtown San Diego, on Sunday, April 19 in Encinitas, a group of approximately 200 people marched along South Coast Highway 101 to protest the closure of beaches, parks and trails due to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic. Promoted by Free Encinitas, a public Facebook group, the event began at 10am near Swamis Seaside Park and proceeded south until around noon. San Diego’s protests occurred within days following President Trump tweeting "LIBERATE" directed to several other states with Democratic governors.

Despite the announcement that criminal charges were being pursued against her for last Saturday's downtown San Diego gathering, Naomi Soria is organizing another protest this Sunday, April 26, in Pacific Beach. The event, entitled A Day of Liberty, is co-organized by Shawn McMillan, who is one of 11 judicial candidates running for four open seats on the San Diego County Superior Court bench this year.

"Hello Fellow Patriots, Sunday, April 26 @ 1PM, we are gathering together to peacefully protest the asinine infringement of our constitutional rights," reads the Facebook event page A Day of Liberty. "We will meet at the Main Lifeguard Tower. We will be forming a gridlock from Mission Blvd from Tourmaline surfpark South to the catamaran. This is a private event. Please only invite people who share the same values of freedom. No trolls. Let’s get back to work, let’s stop sitting at home like sitting ducks and let’s get to it!"

There is also a protest scheduled for downtown San Diego on Friday, April 24, dubbed Liberate San Diego, organized by a group calling themselves The RMNNT. Another protest called Surf’s Up! Shred the Tidalwave of Tyranny is being organized by a group named Encinitans for Encinitas and is scheduled for Saturday, April 25, at Moonlight Beach. Hosted by Party for Socialism and Liberation San Diego branch, Caravan to Cancel The Rents! is a different kind of protest scheduled for Saturday, April 25 in downtown San Diego. It is aimed at calling on California Governor Gavin Newsom to declare a statewide cancellation of all rents, mortgages, and other relief measures for the duration of the state of emergency order.