Marching bands won’t participate in inauguration of Trump; ‘everybody knows why, no one wants to say’

Some D.C. area marching bands have opted out of participating in the inauguration of Donald Trump.

The Ballou High School Majestic Marching Knights, who have appeared in the inaugurations of the George W. Bush and Barack Obama, have said it will not appear at Trump’s parade, NBC Washington reported.

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The principal of another local school, Dunbar High School, said its band won’t participate because it is undergoing changes.

And Eastern High School’s principal told NBC Washington that it chose not to participate but did not say why.

Photo credit: NBC Washington.
Photo credit: NBC Washington.

In fact, a spokesperson for D.C. public schools said they didn’t know of even one local marching band that applied to be in the parade.

Howard University, a traditionally black college that marched in President Obama’s parade, also have decided not to participate.

The band’s director, John Newson, said it was facing budgetary constraints but also added that he believes, in the cases of no bands applying to participate, that political beliefs played a role.

“I think everybody knows why and no one wants to say and lose their job,” Newson told NBC Washington.

Photo credit: NBC Washington.
Photo credit: NBC Washington.

A company that helps organize band trips, Music Celebrations International, said his company didn’t see the same amount of interest as it did for President Obama’s inauguration.

“We didn’t get the response that we got the last time, with Obama. Some groups responded, but with some groups it was crickets,” marketing director Luke Wiscombe said. “We’re seeing a little less enthusiasm to be a part of this event.”

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Still there was significant interest from bands in the South and Midwest and eventually, the Northeast applied.

“It’s a huge deal to march on the national stage,” Wiscombe added.

But as far as local bands, even those in the surrounding areas of Arlington County, Prince George’s County, Fairfax County and the University of Maryland, College Park produced no known band applications.

Imagine the cries of racism if the same had happened to President Obama.

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Carmine Sabia

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