Yesterday, history was made as the Women’s March became the largest inaugural protest in US history. These numbers far exceeded the amount who were on the streets of Washington only a day prior to celebrate Trump’s inauguration. Other places that held major protests included New York, Las Vegas, Florida, and Los Angeles – but the march even continued in other countries like Germany, the UK, and Australia. With so many outraged by the actions of Donald Trump, the Women’s March was there to make a statement that protesters would not be backing down and would continue to fight for their rights that Trump has continually disrespected.
It was a day full of protests, chanting, and resistance – but also a day that many found comfort in with their strength in numbers and vows to stick together.
During the event, speeches were made by some of the guests in attendance including Gloria Steinem, America Ferrera, Scarlett Johansson, Cecile Richards, Linda Sarsour, and many more. Powerful words were spoken to encourage the crowds to keep fighting for the rights of everyone as well as to criticize Trump for his behavior and beliefs. Actress and activist Ashley Judd delivered one of the most notable speeches of the day in which, she said were the words of a 19-year-old from Tennessee named Nina Donovan.
“I didn’t know devils could be resurrected but I feel Hitler in these streets. A mustache traded for a toupee. Nazis renamed the Cabinet Electoral Conversion Therapy, the new gas chambers shaming the gay out of America, turning rainbows into suicide. I am not as nasty as racism, fraud, conflict of interest, homophobia, sexual assault, transphobia, white supremacy, misogyny, ignorance, white privilege … your daughter being your favorite sex symbol, like your wet dreams infused with your own genes. Yeah, I’m a nasty woman — a loud, vulgar, proud woman. I am not nasty like the combo of Trump and Pence being served up to me in my voting booths. I’m nasty like the battles my grandmothers fought to get me into that voting booth.”
There were also many celebrities in attendance at all the different locations including Ariana Grande, Halsey, Troye Sivan, Zendaya, Rowan Blanchard, Rami Malek, Cher, Katy Perry, Emma Watson, Rihanna, John Legend, Gina Rodriguez, Kristen Stewart and many, many more. Those who were unable to attend also reached out on social media to stand in solidarity – one of the most notable tweets of approval coming from Hillary Clinton.
Thanks for standing, speaking & marching for our values @womensmarch. Important as ever. I truly believe we’re always Stronger Together.
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) January 21, 2017
While the Women’s March has a high focus on female rights, the event also unified itself with the rights of Muslims, Mexicans, POCs and LGBTQ people in solidarity. Janelle Monae, who performed at the event, made a speech where she invited the mothers of Trayvon Martin, Eric Garner, Dontre Hamilton, Mohamed Bah, and Jordan Davis to lead a “say his name” chant amongst the crowd.
America Ferrera addressed Trump in her speech, stating “We reject the demonization of our Muslim brothers and sisters. We demand an end to the systemic murder and incarceration of our black brothers and sisters. We will not give up our right to safe and legal abortions. We will not ask our LGBTQ families to go backwards. We will not go from being a nation of immigrants to a nation of ignorance.”
During the march, the environment was peaceful and full of chants that ranged from “Yes we can” as protestors walked past the White House, to “Tell me what America looks like! This is what America looks like.” Another popular one came from women chanting “My body, my choice!” and men chanting “Her body, her choice!” in response.
With such a high volume of people standing in solidarity, the Women’s March was certainly a historic event to watch take place. Many were there for a range of reasons, whether it was to fight for women, for the disabled, against the wall or for Muslim immigrants and black lives. But there was one belief that was commonly shared throughout the crowd – an extreme disliking towards Trump and his administration.
While Trump failed to acknowledge the protests on the day they took place, he finally broke his silence the next day on Twitter to criticize the protesters and accuse them of not voting in the election. This accusation comes despite the fact that Trump lost the popular vote by 3 million votes. It has become increasingly obvious that Trump has chosen the path of opposition instead of choosing to listen to the voices begging him to do better for the sake of their lives. But after the Women’s March, it has also become clear that as long as Trump continues to disrespect races, religions, sexuality, and gender, the protests will continue to happen in response and won’t be silenced.