SALT LAKE CITY — Carrying signs that read "War is not the answer" and "stop Trump's insanity," about two dozen activists gathered at the Wallace F. Bennett Federal Building on Saturday to protest President Donald Trump and threats of war with North Korea.
"This isn't about North Korea's supposed threat. This is about the United States maintaining dominance," said David Newlin, the event's organizer.
In response to North Korea's continued development of its nuclear program, Trump issued threats of retaliation earlier this month, declaring the U.S. military "locked and loaded" and warning the communist country's leader "will regret it fast" if he takes any action against the U.S., according to the Associated Press.
The Utah activists condemned Trump's words as unproductive saber-rattling and dangerous war rhetoric.
Newlin said it's obvious that North Korea poses no threat to the U.S., far outnumbered in military force and economic prosperity.
He said threats of bombings and killing "is not an acceptable way to maintain dominance" and Trump is using North Korea as a "boogeyman" to cater to his supporters and boost his approval ratings.
"Is North Korea the threat? No, the U.S. is the threat to the world," Newlin said.
Activists chanted "no more war" and "money for jobs and education, not for war and occupation" as some passing-by motorists honked their horns.
Though he was skeptical that the president will listen because his threat "energizes his base," Newlin said.
"I hope the message gets through that this isn't going to work out for you, Trump," Newlin said. "This isn't going to make your presidency any easier. In fact, it's going to be the biggest possible disaster that you could have come up with."