By: Dareen Abukwaik
Last year on January 21, the Women’s March was organized as a worldwide protest against President Trump’s inauguration, as well as a fight for reproductive, civil, and human rights. Over 2 million people, men and women, had come together to protest on Trump’s first day in office.
This year, the Women’s March was organized once again, exactly one year since Trump’s inauguration. After the #MeToo movement and Time’s Up, this year’s Women’s March mainly focused on empowering women to vote and run for office for this year’s midterm elections. Protesters supported women’s rights, while criticizing President Trump’s views on immigration, abortion, and LGBT rights. The March began at 11 am, on January 20, 2018, at Lincoln Memorial with a rally. The protesters then marched from the National Mall to Lafayette Park and the White House. Along with Washington, D.C., thousands protested in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, Houston, even Rome. Protesters wore their iconic pink hats, while holding signs, spreading their messages of equal rights for women. Some even wore Handmaid’s costumes, from Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale, which has become a popular Hulu show.
There were many speakers during the rally, such as Virginia Delegate Kelly Fowler, who told crowds, “Last year I marched, then I ran — then I won.” Liberating messages such as these, are inspiring generations of women to continue using their voices to protect their rights and become a vital part of the country’s government. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand of New York stated that “It’s women who are holding our democracy together in these dangerous times. To change the system, we need to change the players and have women at the table.”
Additionally, and probably most notably, there was an official “Power to the Polls” rally in Las Vegas on January 21, also organized by Women’s March leaders, to influence swing states for midterm elections later this year.