Why I March
I woke up in the middle of the night after the election
feeling sick, as if my world had crashed and I could see no way out of the
wreckage. A man had won the election
that I was terrified of. He had made fun
of a disabled reporter, trashed the parents of a deceased Muslim soldier,
called Hispanic immigrants criminals and drug dealers, and called women fat
pigs. To top that off, he said that he
had groped women without their consent because he knew they wouldn't say anything,
as he was rich and famous. This man was
our new president?
I am normally not a particularly political person. If someone asked who I voted for, I would
remain closed mouthed, preferring to remain quiet about it. My candidate lost about as often as won. I might be
disappointed for a while, but I
would quickly go on about my business.
This time, however, was different.
This time I could not keep quiet.
My moral values were at stake.
I live in a very conservative community where only about 11%
of the population voted for Hillary. Do
I feel isolated and looked down upon?
Absolutely! I have been blocked
from the social media accounts of some friends and family. And frankly, it feels a little frightening to
voice my opinion at all.
I chose to join the Women's March in Austin, Texas, not
because I'm a sore loser and a big baby; I joined because I felt my moral
values were threatened. I have to say I'm
tired of hearing "get over it!"
No, I will not! All we have to do
is look back on our history to see that looking the other way and not standing
up for what we believe is right can have far reaching repercussions.
So I marched! It was fantastic, inspiring, and empowering. Here were women of like
mind who were there
to hold their signs high and march for what they believed in. There were grandmothers, middle-aged women,
young women, and girls. Men were there
to support their sisters, mothers and daughters. I saw Muslim women, black women, Hispanic
women, and members of the LGBTQ community.
I felt a sisterhood, as we all accepted and understood one another.
The number of marchers far exceeded the 33,000 that were
expected. It ballooned to
75,000-100,000. The sea of people on the
capital's lawn slowly fed into the street.
It took an hour for my family to finally enter the street and begin our
march, a mile and a half walk through downtown.
The marchers were peaceful, and spectators stood in solidarity holding
their own signs as they stood on sidewalks or peered through office windows or
I will continue to use my voice. It is important to support all the women who
have been sexually assaulted, for all people of color who are facing more
empowered racism, for people of other faiths and beliefs who are facing discriminations,
for LGBTQ people who are afraid that their hard won rights will be rescinded,
and for the millions of people who are going to lose their insurance through
ACA with no replacement in place. It is
vital that we continue to fight for human rights. Americans cannot lose their compassion and
acceptant of diversity.