My husband Tim and I were in Mexico visiting friends on Nov. 8, 2016. We had sent in our absentee ballots, ensuring our votes counted. The next morning, after some contemplation, I told Tim we needed to get home because I had work to do. By Thursday of that week, I had found out about the Women’s March on Washington from a D.C. area friend and booked my travel.
I have never been a particularly political person. I exercise my right to vote regularly, but I have always held some contempt for politics to be honest. And so, I’ve been complacent. That ended on Nov. 8, 2016. I can not sit idly by and watch the country that I love go backwards. It’s time for peaceful action.
Please understand, this isn’t “anti” anything, at least not for me. I made the decision to join the march because I love this country, because I believe it’s already the greatest country in the world, and I want to protect the freedoms that all those before us worked so hard for. I marched for all those who could not, for anyone who has ever been made to feel less than, or vulnerable, or exploited because of their gender, or the color of their skin, or disability, or religion, or whom they love, or where they’re from, or their appearance. I marched for human rights. This is why I marched, and each person who participated has their own reasons. If you want to know, just ask them.
Don’t get me wrong, this is not about any one person. The election, in my mind, was just the tipping point to things that have been brewing in our society for years. This is about a society that allowed a man to come to power that has talked of targeting an entire population because of the religion they practice, that has bragged about his sexual assault on women, that continually lies to the American public. In my complacency, I am guilty of allowing this to happen. We all are.
I have seen comments from many of those that don’t support the march. The optimist in me likes to think that they don’t understand the march, and that with a little open communication, and an open mind, that will change. I’ve been told by friends who don’t support the march that I should just get over it (referring to the recent election), that they didn’t march in 2009. To them I say, why not? Why didn’t you speak out? When I see something I feel is an injustice, it’s my right and indeed my duty to come to peaceful action. That’s what this country has been built on. I’ve read comments that say the march accomplishes nothing. That couldn’t be farther from the truth. And let me tell you why.
I was at the Women’s March on Washington, the one in Washington, D.C. I was among the 500,000 women and men who listened to speeches by some of the most powerful women in our country, women like Kamala Harris, California’s newest senator, whom I admire greatly. I can not tell you how empowering that is, to be among a half million beautiful, supportive souls (with no arrests mind you) who care about the future of our country. And it goes beyond that. Estimates say that nearly 4 million people in the U.S. alone joined sister marches, and countless others from all seven continents. The eyes of the world are upon us, we are leading the fight for human rights.
I marched for all of us.