On Saturday, January 21st, all around the United States and the world men and women will be participating in various Women's Marches to protest against the incoming Trump/Pence administration and their stance on women's rights, among other things.
In addition to the Women's March on Washington, there are an estimated total of 616 marches, and 1,364,010 sister marchers around the world.
Trump's Inauguration Committee blocked access to the Lincoln Memorial in D.C--a popular protest stop-- in an attempt to invalidate the march, but in fact that hasn't stopped anyone. Actually (mansplaining voice) "nearly 30 protest groups have been granted permits for Inauguration Day, more than four times the number averaged in past inaugurations, according to the National Park Service," New York Daily News reports..
What does the march stand for?
The Women's March website lays out some of the principles of the protest, including civil rights, immigrant rights, environmental justice, workers rights, etc. Here are some below:
We believe that Women’s Rights are Human Rights and Human Rights are Women’s Rights. We must create a society in which women - including Black women, Native women, poor women, immigrant women, Muslim women, lesbian queer and trans women - are free and able to care for and nurture their families, however they are formed, in safe and healthy environments free from structural impediments.
We believe in Reproductive Freedom. We do not accept any federal, state or local rollbacks, cuts or restrictions on our ability to access quality reproductive healthcare services, birth control, HIV/AIDS care and prevention, or medically accurate sexuality education. This means open access to safe, legal, affordable abortion and birth control for all people, regardless of income, location or education.
We firmly declare that LGBTQIA Rights are Human Rights and that it is our obligation to uplift, expand and protect the rights of our gay, lesbian, bi, queer, trans or gender non-conforming brothers, sisters and siblings. We must have the power to control our bodies and be free from gender norms, expectations and stereotypes.
It's not just women who are marching
Obviously, the March in DC will be huge. It's formally allied with Planned Parenthood, and Harry Belafonte and Gloria Steinem are honorary co-chairs. Celebrities such as America Ferrera, Uzo Aduba, Cher, Danielle Brooks, Katy Perry, Amy Schumer, Constance Wu, and Zendaya are slated to either perform or speak. But in this march, and marches around the world, it's not only women who will be protesting.
Men are walking in solidarity and fighting for women's rights. I asked them why
"To oversimplify, because "behind every great man stands a great woman," is a phrase instead of "beside every great man stands a great woman.""
"My girlfriend is flying to DC, but I couldn't spend the money so I decided to stay and march here. I'm marching to remind America (and myself) that we are still here, and that while we may have lost the election, our ideas actually won the popular vote in this country by over three million votes. I think over the past 8 years, I took equality for granted, and I want to make sure I don't do that anymore. As a straight white man, I can only relate so much to the struggle of women or people of color or LGBT folks, but I want to be there to show my support for them and make sure I use my privilege to protect others."
"My girlfriend and I booked our travel & AirBNB in October, under the assumption that the election was going to turn out differently. We talked it over after the election, and decided not to cancel our plans. We wanted to show Trump and our government that they aren't going to be able to take away basic rights from half of the population without a fight."
"I want to make sure this incoming administration is aware that a great number of people stand against them, so I gotta just be there and bring as many people as I can to ensure that. Beyond that, I want to just publicly register my disdain and hatred for our incoming administration and the disgusting things they stand for. I want to remember four years or eight years or 50 years from now that I at least made gestures towards the fact I stand against this bullshit, however small those gestures may be. So going to marches and protests is kind of my way of bookmarking this period in time so I can point back and say, "I stood against this bullshit.""
"And a man attending a march in New Zealand: I'll be going straight from the Women's March to my niece's 9th birthday. The idea that by the time my niece turns 13 women's rights in terms of equal pay, abortion law and equality in general is likely to be worse off than it is now is just not acceptable. We may have a different political system in NZ but to pretend US policy doesn't affect other countries is to ignore every election of the last few years. As to why the marches have become international - it's ALL been international. We've followed the primaries, and the election, and shared in that horrific sinking feeling since Trump's name was called. We're all affected by who the President of the United States is, whether we like it or not. And we don't get to vote with you - so if it's going to help, we'll march with you instead."
"A couple years ago my mom told me how she had an abortion when my sister and I were younger because my parents knew they wouldn't be able to give a good life to three children. That helped put a lot into perspective. I don't have much money to donate to causes, so I figured that participation in the march was a way I could help fight back and I feel like it's my duty as an American to stand in solidarity with women around the country. "
"I am marching in support of my friends who are likely facing an attack on their rights by the incoming administration. I'll be rocking my planned parenthood shirt and a ton of popular vote winner Hillary gear."
"I guess i just feel like I'm trying to figure out what political instruments I have to resist and express my views, and one is protesting. I've never felt more worried about America, I cried every day for a week after the election. It's woken me up in a lot of way and one is I feel like I need to be a better citizen."
"Well if you look at it, half (probably more) of the worlds population is women. Its crazy to think just because I have a different set of "dangly bits" that Im in a better off position whether if its financially, career-wise, or with freedoms. Its important to stand with women now to help achieve a level playing field for women, which can help level the field for people of different races, creeds, or sexual/gender identities."
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