A transgender “dance protest” took place during the Moms for Liberty “Joyful Warriors” National Summit in Philadelphia, where a group of protesters gathered to voice their opinions. They used loudspeakers to hurl insults at the attendees, calling them “bigots” and “fascists.” They also played music, waved rainbow flags, and danced in the street.
The protest was well-publicized beforehand, with media stories, social media posts, and signs posted throughout the city indicating that the protest was taking place in response to the summit, which featured several Republican presidential hopefuls, including Ron DeSantis, Nikki Haley, and former President Donald Trump.
The protesters had a supply of cardboard signs for those who wished to borrow them, but not many were taken. The protesters also had snacks, sidewalk chalk for writing insults on the ground, and tables with reading materials aimed at persuading the public. Some protesters were seen with clipboards and pens, engaging with the crowd.
Inside the venue, the Moms for Liberty summit attendees were undeterred by the protests outside. They gathered to show support for one another in their fight for conservative values, despite the opposition and derogatory insults they often face. The grassroots conservative Moms group was formed two years ago during the COVID-19 pandemic out of parental concerns over what they saw as “destructive” policies in schools. Their ability to attract five Republican presidential hopefuls highlighted their political influence and may be why they were targeted by the protesters.
One of the keynote speakers at the summit was Vivek Ramaswamy, a Republican presidential candidate. Ramaswamy, alongside his wife and two children, joined cofounder Tiffany Justice on stage to discuss national policies and their vision for the future. The presence of his family on stage was seen as a marketing strategy to appeal to the predominantly female audience. Ramaswamy received applause and standing ovations multiple times during his speech, particularly when he announced his plans to shut down the U.S. Department of Education and prioritize school choice.
Ramaswamy also expressed his desire to dismantle other federal agencies, such as the FBI, IRS, ATF, and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, arguing that they create a fourth branch of government and contribute to corruption. He criticized the protesters gathered outside, claiming they were unwilling to listen to the truth. Ramaswamy stated several “truths,” including his belief in the existence of God, the notion of two genders, the necessity of fossil fuels, and the importance of parental determination in children’s education.
Another presidential candidate present at the summit was Asa Hutchinson, the former governor of Arkansas. Hutchinson boasted his accomplishments during his time as governor, particularly in the education sector, where he implemented a comprehensive computer science program in Arkansas high schools. He emphasized the need to expand computer science programs across the nation and to remove government interference in sensitive issues such as gender and healthcare, leaving the decision-making power to parents.
Hutchinson highlighted his experience as a federal prosecutor and his involvement in addressing street fights and border security. He advocated for balancing the budget and emphasized his successful track record in implementing fiscal responsibility as a governor.
The Moms for Liberty National Summit provided a platform for these presidential hopefuls to share their visions for the country and address the concerns of conservative parents. Despite facing protests and insults from opposition groups, the attendees remained steadfast in their commitment to advocating for their values and protecting the interests of their children.