Late Monday, two Dayton, Ohio Area residents launched a GoFundMe campaign to cover the expenses of shipping Baby Trump Blimp from Chicago to Dayton and filling it with helium once it arrives. As of Tuesday afternoon, Carina Dani and Megan Baxter have stated that the blimp is on its way to Dayton, where they intend for it to participate as the centerpiece of a protest against the president’s visit to the area.
A statement on the campaign page reads: “we want our President, as he’s giving his speech, to see himself depicted as a child. A child that has failed to do anything about gun reform, has failed to stand up for what is right, and has continued to spew divisive propaganda throughout his term as President.”
The blimp was first seen over London, England in 2018, during Trump’s visit to the UK and made a second appearance, taking off from Parliament Square in early June. Its most famous sighting in the U.S. was in Washington DC during this year’s 4th of July festivities. Now, the almost 20-ft high inflatable balloon depicting Donald Trump as an angry baby will be helping the citizens of Dayton make a statement about preventable gun violence in America.
It is all but confirmed that President Trump will visit Dayton this week, as presidential counselor Kellyanne Conway has said that “it’s safe and ready.” Many in the community—rocked by a shooting in the historic Oregon District Sunday morning which claimed the lives of nine people—have expressed their disdain at the idea of the president coming to Ohio, in a stunt that some have called a campaign stop. The president also came under fire from people in the Miami Valley when, during his statement on the weekend’s deadly events, he mistakenly offered condolences to Toledo.
Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley said Tuesday that she would tell the president “how unhelpful” he has been when he visits. “His rhetoric has been painful for many in our community,” she said to reporters. “I think that people should stand up and say they’re not happy if they’re not happy that he’s coming.”
And that’s exactly what the protesters, under the banner of Baby Trump Blimp, will be doing during the president’s visit this week. The blimp’s caretakers have said that they will be mobile at the notice of Trump’s arrival, and they plan to station the blimp as near to his eventual stop in the city as possible. Instead of filling the balloon with helium to float over the protest, they rather have decided to fill it with air and anchor it to the ground. This will allow them to give the money raised to the shooting victims’ families, which is now the promise of the fundraiser’s organizers.
Nearly $2,000 was raised in the campaign’s first 17 hours. If you would like to join in the current fundraising efforts, you can donate here.
It has been reported that the president will also travel to El Paso, TX, where he plans to visit with the families of the 20 who died in the Saturday shooting at an area Wal-Mart.