President Donald Trump took a longer route than usual to get back to his Palm Beach, Florida resort after spending the afternoon golfing and ignoring the hundreds of marches taking place across the globe to end gun violence.
Earlier on Saturday, the president’s motorcade was seen heading towards his International Golf Club in West Palm Beach but in the afternoon the motorcade took another, less-direct route back to his weekend home at Mar-a-Lago.
The sudden route change came as more than 2,000 teens and adults protested in Palm Beach. According to the Sun Sentinel, the marchers gathered at Dreher Park Saturday afternoon before heading east towards Mar-a-Lago.
The motorcade carrying President Donald Trump is pictured making its way to the Trump International Golf Course in West Palm Beach, Florida on Saturday
Trump, however, took another route back to Mar-a-Lago to avoid driving by a park in Palm Beach where thousands of protestors had gathered
Trump spent Saturday afternoon golfing at Trump International Golf Club in West Palm Beach
The March For Our Lives event in West Palm Beach was one of 800 taking place around the world on Saturday
A gun-rights advocate (left) exchanges heated words with demonstrator Eric Cauley (right) during a rally in West Palm Beach on Saturday
Protestors stayed in the area for half-hour holding up signs and chanting. They then headed back to Dreher Park.
The outlet reports that Trump’s typical route from his golf club back to Mar-a-Lago goes directly past Dreher Park, which means if the president had stuck with his usual way home he would have driven past the thousands of demonstrators in Palm Beach.
The White House has not said why the president avoided the area.
Trump, who usually uses Saturday mornings to make statements or outlandish remarks on issues that might be on his mind, has remained silent on the March For Our Lives events.
White House deputy press secretary Lindsay Walters released a statement Saturday afternoon saying they ‘applaud the many courageous young Americans exercising their First Amendment rights today’.
‘Keeping our children safe is a top priority of the President, which is why he urged Congress to pass the Fix NICS and STOP School Violence Acts, and signed them into law,’ she added.
Trump boasted about the rule on Friday night online.
‘Obama Administration legalized bump stocks. BAD IDEA. As I promised, today the Department of Justice will issue the rule banning BUMP STOCKS with a mandated comment period. We will BAN all devices that turn legal weapons into illegal machine guns,’ he wrote in a tweet.
More than 2,000 people were in West Palm Beach protesting at the March For Our Lives rally
The rally was call for an end to gun violence following the death of 17 students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida
This was the scene on Pennsylvania Avenue at around 9am on Saturday morning as more and more protesters arrived with signs but Trump made no mention of it on Twitter or elsewhere
The only tweet put out by the President on Saturday morning concerned Friday’s ISIS attack on a supermarket in the south of France which left three people dead.
‘Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims of the horrible attack in France yesterday, and we grieve the nation’s loss. We also condemn the violent actions of the attacker and anyone who would provide him support. We are with you!’
Yet, had the President been at home in Washington he would have doubtless heard the sounds of thousands of young people protesting.
Just feet away from Trump’s weekday residence at The White House, half a million people packed Pennsylvania Avenue for the March For Our Lives events against gun violence.
The President was unusually quiet on Twitter mentioning Friday’s attack in France and staying silent on massive protests against gun control taking place in American cities
The President found a couple of supporters in Florida standing by ready to greet him
Hundreds of thousands of people filled Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington DC on Saturday for the March For Our Lives against gun violence. The President stayed silent on the topic
The main event was held in Washington DC where survivors from Stoneman Douglas High School gave passionate speeches calling for gun reform.
They were joined by a raft of stars including George and Amal Clooney, who donated $500,000 to the event, Jimmy Fallon, Steven Spielberg, Ariana Grande and Miley Cyrus.
Another 800 events were held around the world including New York for the same cause, yet the President stayed silent on the cause behind the marches.
The activists protesting on Saturday want to see lawmakers take more action and are asking for assault rifles to be outlawed, something which has not been promised.
Trump’s silence is all the more surprising given the fact he met with survivors of the Valentine’s Day Parkland shooting in the days following the tragedy, at the White House.
The President met dozens of guests who had been directly impacted by the shooting that left 17 dead, including 14 children, and he told them that he was listening to their concerns.
At the same event, the President put forward a bizarre proposal to arm up to a fifth of teachers.
Survivors of the Parkland shooting and their parents begged President Donald Trump when they met him last month at the White House to act on gun violence
‘To me there can be nothing worse than what you’ve gone through,’ he told the victims, before bringing up reforms to the system that his administration had backed publicly.
He told the survivors of the shooting and their parents that he grieved for them during the listening session at the White House, in which many of the guests implored the president to take immediate action on gun violence.
Shortly after the meeting, the president came under fierce criticism last month after a photo emerged of him holding a note, written on White House letterhead, reminding him to listen to the concerns of the students who had survived the shooting.
Point number five was a reminder to himself to tell his guests: ‘I hear you.’ Other questions that were also visible on the card included: ‘What would you most want me to know about your experience?’ and ‘What can we do to help you feel safe?’