Last week, the internet had a conniption over Juli Briskman, a rogue bicyclist who was fired from her job after giving Trump’s presidential motorcade the finger. Now, those who were inspired by Briskman’s act of resistance are helping her get back on her feet—to the tune of $62,000.
More than 2,000 people have donated to a GoFundMe set up on Briskman’s behalf, aimed at reaching $100,000. Rob Mello, who launched the fundraiser last week, called Briskman “an inspiration to us all” and wrote that his free-speaking, Trump-bashing hero is now officially slated to receive the money he raises.
Briskman, a 50-year-old mother of two, lives in Sterling, Virginia, not far from Trump National Golf Course. She was out for a bike ride one Saturday afternoon in October when a massive line of black SUVs careened by her—which she recognized as the presidential motorcade, headed back from a pleasant day on the links.
“My blood just started to boil,” she told the Huffington Post. “I’m thinking, DACA recipients are getting kicked out. He pulled ads for open enrollment in Obamacare. Only one-third of Puerto Rico has power. I’m thinking, He’s at the damn golf course again.”
She said she flipped off Trump’s entourage “a number of times” before it overtook her, and figured that was that. But unbeknownst to her, a photographer in the press pool had captured her single-fingered protest. It took only a matter of days for the photos to go viral, for Briskman to transform into an anti-Trump hero, and—once word reached her employer, government contractor Akima LLC—for Briskman to lose her job.
Still, Briskman says she doesn’t regret what went down. She’s said it “felt great” to get a chance to give the leader of the free world a piece of her mind, even if doing so cost her a job. And if her GoFundMe keeps barreling toward its goal, Briskman might not have to worry about finding a new gig for a while.
“I’m angry about where our country is right now. I am appalled. This was an opportunity for me to say something,” she told HuffPo. “I’d do it again.”