Yesterday, over 1000 bodegas around New York closed in protest of Trump's Muslim Ban, with many of the owners and employees gathering at Brooklyn's Borough Hall to decry the discriminatory, xenophobic and unconstitutional executive order. We joined the strikers and protesters last night and spoke to a few about what this ban means to them and why it's more important to fight now than ever. If you're outside NYC or missed yesterday's protests, you can also help by donating to a GoFundMe supporting the financial losses incurred by participating bodega employees yesterday.

Osama Althail, Harlem

Why did you decide to join the protest today?

I think my religion and all mankind is equal. What the President said is inhumane. People escape for a reason ya know? People die in my country, we come here to make a better life for ourselves and or families.

How does the ban personally affect you?

My family will not be able to come here. Two of my cousins are trying to bring their families here for a better life but now they cannot. It breaks my heart.

Are you concerned about the potential wages lost?

Yes, but life is more than money.

What is one thing you would tell President Trump, if you got the opportunity to talk with him?

"You cannot judge a book by its cover. Take time to learn about Muslim people and our culture, we are no different than the next man. A good example of this is when you have salt and sugar. You can never tell the difference until you taste it. Until you study our religion, our ways and our lifestyle, please do not judge us. "

Makee Dakhlaoui, Lower East Side


Why did you decide to join the protest today?

I learned today that my mom has been taking off her hijab because she is afraid to go to her house keeping job and have people accuse her of being a thief or Muslim.

How does the ban personally affect you?

I am Tunisian. This divides people as a whole, and I am an enemy against any type of segregation.

Will you continue striking?

Yes, until everyone can see eye to eye.

What is one thing you would tell President Trump, if you got the opportunity to talk with him?

"This new executive order brings discomfort to my mother and makes her feel unsafe to be a Muslim woman. "

Katie Laphan, Brooklyn



Why did you decide to join the protest today?

I am a school teacher who works with mostly Yemeni students. I love my students and the world needs to know they are not terrorists and that the Muslim ban is un-American.

Are you concerned about the potential wages lost?

I know how hard it is for small businesses, so yes I am concerned. My local bodega family took turns running the store while each family member came down to protest.

What is one thing you would tell President Trump, if you got the opportunity to talk with him?

I would say, "I don't think its principled." I don't know, I would tell him to just GET OUT!

Tanzilla Rahman, Harlem

Why did you decide to join the protest today?

This issue directly affects my Muslim community. A lot of people move here for stability. Things like water are not available in my country.

How does the ban personally affect you?

My sense of security of the future is gone now.

What is one thing you would tell President Trump, if you got the opportunity to talk with him?

"WHAT MUSLIM WOMAN HURT YOU!"

Abdullah Adaliy, Brooklyn

Why did you decide to join the protest today?

My mother can't get her green card. We are afraid of what's going to happen to us.

Are you concerned about the potential wages lost?

Money doesn't matter to me, my freedom does.

What is one thing you would tell President Trump, if you got the opportunity to talk with him?

"Don't be racist, don't judge us."