Why I Marched…

I read a great piece of writing earlier this week addressed to a group of women who are posting and re-posting a list of reasons they disagree with the idea of a Women’s March and feel the march was not for them… I was at the march in Eugene… yes, many, including myself wore pink ‘pussy’ hats… they were pink hats with CAT EARS… if you are offended by THAT how is it you are not raising your voice against our own president who said he could grab any woman in the ‘pussy’ because he has money and power. He was not being clever, coy, or using a play on words… even if he had used a different word, the message that it is okay to grab a woman in her privates should be far more offensive than women wearing pink hats marching for equal rights and the marginalized people of our society.

I appreciate that I feel equal, that I am respected in the workplace and by my husband, that I can choose to hang out with friends whenever I want, and that I can, in my life, do anything my husband can do… I am lucky.  I am privileged. And because I know that I have privilege, I know that others must not have those same privileges.

In our country, women can join the military.  Women fought for that right… but along with it came catcalls, snide remarks, harassment, and sexual assault.  And along with speaking out against those conditions came blame, rude remarks, and a whole slew of difficulties and persecution .  I am not saying that every woman in the military goes through this, but many have and just dismissed it as ‘the price you pay’ or ‘part of that culture’ . That is just unacceptable.

Women typically pay more when getting a mortgage, buying a car, and when buying nearly identical clothing items or personal products…. is that okay with you? Maybe it is

But, for me, this march was by women standing in opposition to everything Trump represents.  We have seen, over the course of a few days, the ways he is taking action on his scary promises.  Tech companies have stopped their immigrant employees, who work lawfully in our country, from traveling outside of the country on company business for fear that they won’t be able to get back in if the leave.   People coming in with visas have been detained in New York. People in Cairo, with visas, are being  stopped from getting on their planes. According to a BBC report, over 13,000 Americans were killed by gun violence in 2015. That is over four times more than have been killed by terrorism from 2001-2013. But, it is easier to address those outside threats than look at our own obsession with owning guns. Trump is targeting a group of people… will that make our country safer? Will it make you safer?

I marched because Trump is dredging the swamp and putting those super wealthy insiders in the most powerful positions in our country. I marched for healthcare, for the right to collectively bargain, for immigrants, for refugees, for the right to choose, for clean air, for public schools, for Native lands, for my LGBTQ brothers and sisters, and for our children.

So, women’s rights are a huge issue…. but I marched for that and far more… I marched because I am American and believe in what America represents and that is the antithesis of the road Trump is leading us down.

I will not be quiet.  Let me know when we march again…. I’ve got my hat ready to go!

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