As I rang in the New Year just weeks ago I’m not sure I have ever been happier to say Goodbye to the year. 2016 was tumultuous, looking back it was rough for myself personally, for various reasons, and for the world. The new President of the United States was of course probably the biggest talking point of the year and unfortunately we are still talking about him. When I saw there was a Women’s March taking place on Saturday 21st January, to coincide with the inauguration, I really could not miss out. It was my first so I was a little nervous as to what it would be like but mostly I was beyond excited. One of my best friends agreed to come with me (I compensated her with an extra hot Starbucks and large cookie to say thank you for braving the freezing temperatures) and the day exceeded my expectations. The atmosphere was like the best day of a festival, bright sunshine and blue skies (albeit baltic), smiling faces and a sense of comradery. There was music, singing dancing and by far the star of the day were the amazing signs. They were for the most part (aside from a couple of ‘Fuck Trump’ ones) based around kindness, humour, fantastic puns and with a sense of lightheartedness, but with a very serious underlying message.
When people ask why did you go? The answer is very simple, to show solidarity. Not only am I a feminist, which is reason enough to go considering the disgusting, derogatory way he speaks about woman and the dangerous views he has on issues such as abortion, but I am environmentally conscious and a believer that as human beings we are all equal. To say you don’t believe in climate change is like someone saying they believe the earth is flat, last year was the hottest year on record and the damage we are doing is unimaginable. To say you are going to ban an entire group of people because they are Muslim from a nation that is supposed to be the land of the free is scary, I’m proud to have friends from all Religions and backgrounds and even more proud to be involved in their life and their culture, including being a part of two Muslim weddings as a honourary bridesmaid. To say that a complete nation of people are rapists and you are going to build a wall to separate yourselves from them is ridiculous. To quote one of the great signs from the day and to put it in the most British way possible ‘I’m really quite cross about this’.
The marches amounted to an estimated 5,000,000 people globally, with sister marches taking place on every single continent (yes Antarctica represented). That number is astounding, there were also no arrests made at any of the marches. However, I will openly admit however that there was a vast majority of people in attendance, white women, which could explain the police approach to the day and has caused some controversy and criticism since the marches. I think what is important to take from the event is that it was about coming together and standing up for what we believe to be right, men, women, children, trans, gay, Muslim, Christian and so on and so on. There will always be criticisms about any event and there will always be improvements to be made. Having done my first march I have the confidence now to seek out any more and help wherever I can, I hope that is what people can take from it so it is not just the veteran activists who have been stomping streets for years making a difference but the young people who now know the affect something they take part in can have.
I will leave you with this, Trump means fart in Great Britain #PresidentFart, nuff said.