Women’s Marches globally protest Trump

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Millions of women storm DC the day after Trump's inauguration

Kaitlyn Steinhiser, Editor

Women’s marches were held throughout the world on January 21, 2017 in the wake of the United States’ inauguration of Donald Trump to secure women’s rights and promote equality amongst the sexes.

The movement’s mission is as follows: “We stand together in solidarity with our partners and children for the protection of our rights, our safety, our health, and our families – recognizing that our vibrant and diverse communities are the strength of our country.”

Without counting Washington DC, the original hub of the marches, over 1 million people marched in protest, making the Women’s March of 2017 the largest inaugural protest in the history of the United States. There were 673 official “sister marches” to the original DC movement. The marches were made up of citizens of regular status and celebrities alike; stars and public figures such as Lena Dunham, Lin Manuel Miranda, Emma Watson, and Amy Poehler marched among the masses on January 21.

Celebrity marchers made speeches as well; Madonna’s speech in DC sparked some controversy due to the fact that she mentioned “blowing up the White House,” but she has since clarified her comments to prevent people from taking her so literally. Other speakers included Senator Elizabeth Warren, America Ferrara, Barbra Streisand, and many more.

Marchers expressed their concerns through their wardrobe as well as through signs and chants. Pink, knitted hats were distributed to marchers, and many held signs with pop culture references relating to the issues at hand. For example, a woman held a sign with an altered Spongebob Squarepants quote that said “Ravioli, ravioli. Give me the birth controli.”

The Trump administration and the Republican party in general have both threatened to defund Planned Parenthood, an organization that provides birth control, STD testing, cancer screenings and prevention methods, and abortions. This would prevent many women from accessing proper care, and its lack of support from the party that makes up a majority of US government ignited the marchers.

President Trump responded to the marchers on Twitter, saying “Watched protests yesterday but was under the impression that we just had an election! Why didn’t these people vote? Celebs hurt cause badly.” After experiencing backlash from Twitter users claiming that he was disparaging an American’s right to protest, he tweeted “Peaceful protests are a hallmark of our democracy. Even if I don’t always agree, I recognize the rights of people to express their views.”

Like Trump, many non-marchers took to social media to air their complaints about the movement. Some women found it unnecessary, and others thought the march was too exclusive. Several editorials trivializing the march were met with feminist responses written by marchers themselves. Debates about the legitimacy of the march burned through the comment sections of almost every major social media site.

The Women’s March organization has made it clear that their initiatives are “not a moment, but a movement.” To continue the movement, they created the “Ten Actions for the first 100 Days” campaign.

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