I did not set out to write another post at this time about the Women’s March on Washington. I was thrilled with the turnout, thrilled that there were marches not only in Washington, but all over the nation, and in fact the globe! I was vastly relieved that there were no arrests and no injuries. All in all, I felt good about the march, but did not see a reason to write another post about it just yet, thinking I would wait a week or two and see if there were any results, fallout, or anything else in response. But today, I saw and read some things that simply sickened me, and the angrier I became, the more my fingers itched and my brain refused to concentrate on the post I was writing about the European response to having Trump at the helm. So alas, I am once again, writing about the Women’s March, or rather the responses to it.
The march had a purpose. Not, perhaps, quite as clear-cut and well-defined as the March on Washington on 28 August 1963, but it had purpose. It had many purposes, but its main purpose was to send a message … a message to the current resident of the Oval Office, his minions, and Congress that we are not going to be silent. We are not going to stand calmly aside while you implement policies that rob access to healthcare from some 20 million people. We will not sit down and shut up while you turn over our natural resources and wildlife to the states to lease to miners, drillers and loggers. We will not calmly sit knitting by the fire while you reverse hard-won civil rights legislation, including same-sex marriage. We will yell loud and long if you fill your cabinet with the likes of Betsy DeVos, Jeff Sessions, and Scott Pruitt. We will do whatever it takes to get our message out if you follow through with your threat to use OUR money to build a wall on the Mexican border – a wall that will hurt the U.S. economy far more than that of Mexico! Or if you try to deport our Muslim friends from this nation that was founded on the principles that you are denying to so many. The message is: we will be watching, we have a voice, we have power, and we will use it.
Apparently there are a lot of men and women out there who see this march as being about a single issue: abortion. Yes, the threat to overturn Roe v Wade is one the many portions of Trump’s platform that we protest, but it is only one of many.
Yesterday, the day after the march, social media was filled with anti-marcher memes and posts. Mostly from women … some basically just stating their opinion opposing the march, others being downright rude. This one, in particular, made me see red:
It is difficult, if not impossible, to discern what is real and what is faux news, thus I choose to err on the side of caution and will not post any comments that I have not been able to verify. That said, here are some of the comments people have made in response to the march:
- “Don’t include me in your crazy rhetoric. As a woman, this does not represent me. I am not an extremist or a feminist. No one is stealing any of my rights or beliefs. I am not a victim. I am not oppressed.”
- “The election is over but not the fight against America. This march, which is organized and funded by George Soros, Planned Parenthood and other donors, is getting local and worldwide media attention. Their website (www.womensmarch.com) says this march is the rise of the woman and is the rise of the nation. Let me say loud and clear, they do not represent me. This march spits in my face and the faces of the women who voted for Donald J. Trump.” (Note: Soros and Planned Parenthood are mentioned as financiers of the march in multiple media sites that are known for their faux news, such as Breitbart, but I find no references on legitimate news outlets, so I question the veracity of this statement)
- “Why do any women need this march? This is America, I have everything I need, and if you don’t, it’s your own fault, and marching won’t fix that for you.”
- “Why protest, what are you protesting against? I have every right my husband has. This is a bunch of angry women who don’t have a good man in their life.”
- “I think they were marching to show that they oppose our new president BECAUSE of the comments he made to Billy Bush. I saw signs reflecting that, in the march. Also they do not like his manner and feel he is not qualified. ALSO they like Hillary and can’t BELIEVE she did not win. Also, celebrities ( Rosie, Whoopie, Steven Colbert, Meryl, etc) get them all fired up and ready to take on the government. This is what I think is going on.”
And then there was this …
Enough said. Two points here. First, as I mentioned above, the march was not simply, nor even primarily, about the issue of pro-choice. It was about so much more, and I suspect that those who speak against the march are aware of that, but the pro-choice, or abortion, issue is the only one they feel strongly enough to argue. Second, it is selfish, narrow-minded, and arrogant to assume that simply because your life is fine and dandy, everyone’s is. Many women in this country are struggling to put food on the table and a roof over their heads for their children. Many cannot afford to take their children to a doctor if they lose their healthcare through ACA. Many people in this nation will suffer under Trump’s proposed policies, through no fault of their own! It is about the nation, our future, about equal rights for ALL people.
Although we cannot have exact attendance information, all indicators, from aerial photos, Metro rider statistics, etc., indicate that the turnout for the Women’s March far exceeded that of the inauguration. I think it speaks volumes that the march was peaceful, there was no violence, no arrests … this tells me that these women really wanted to make their voices heard through peaceful protest and not muddy the waters with scandal that would be seized upon in the press and their communities. Women around the nation sent a message, not only to Donald Trump, but also to Congress. They should be praised and respected, not criticized and mocked. A special thanks to our fellow-blogger, Gronda Morin for participating in the D.C. march and representing us all! Hats off to every person, women and men alike, who stood and marched to send the message that We The People have a voice and are not afraid to use it.