By Megan Bonney
On January 21, 2017, people all over the world came together in the center of their cities to protest the inauguration of Donald Trump, taking place the previous day. Though initially organized to protest Trump, the goals of the marches grew to advocate for legislation regarding all human rights, not just those of women, and to unify the diverse communities Trump targets. Overall, these marches hoped to recognize diverse communities are what help strengthen our country. An estimated 5 million people showed up to protest, making the Women’s March the largest single-day protest in U.S. history. A higher number of protesters showed up than the organizers could even imagine, even leading some routes of the marches to be shut down early for safety concerns. It was an extreme success, uniting the power of women and their allies. Women and their allies were united through their defiance of Trump, to the peaceful protests on the streets of 408 cities worldwide. Advocating for human rights is an uphill battle, so organizers vowed to make the Women’s March an annual protest to ensure that those scorned by Trump’s inauguration are never silenced.
The date of the upcoming third annual Women’s March will be January 19, 2019. The power seen on the streets in the 2017 marches needs to be matched in the wake of events such as Brett Kavanaugh’s disgraceful confirmation as a Supreme Court justice. Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearings were highly controversial after a former classmate, Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, came forward with sexual assault allegations against Kavanaugh. (Cont. on pg 2)
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Despite her inspiring testimony, an inadequately-handled FBI investigation, and Kavanaugh’s own inappropriate behavior during the hearings, he was still confirmed by the senate. His confirmation is just an example of the massive steps taken back in not only women’s rights, but human rights, that have resulted from the 2016 election. Women’s reproductive rights are more at risk than ever before. Kavanaugh condemns birth control and abortions. The ruling on the landmark case, Roe v. Wade, is incredibly vulnerable to being overturned or nullified with him in a Republican-controlled Supreme Court, meaning women’s right to a safe, legal abortion will be stripped away – quite possibly even from women whose pregnancies are deadly or products of rape or incest.
Kavanaugh’s confirmation is even more of an attack on women than Trump’s inauguration, which is why we must fight back even stronger than we did in 2017. Attend your local Women’s March on January 19th. Visit the organization’s website (womensmarch.com) to RSVP and to find more details. Don’t silence yourself after the march, continue to make your voice heard through democracy! Though the midterm elections have already taken place, it’s never too early to get informed or to even get involved in a campaign for the 2020 elections. Make sure to vote, even if there are no candidates that you truly resonate with. Frankly, you may never find the perfect candidate for you. Follow Barack Obama’s advice, “do not wait for the perfect message,” just get informed and vote for someone. Don’t stop there! Contact your senator, your state representative, anyone with a larger platform in the political sphere and make sure that they hear you. In addition, encourage others to do the same as we are strong in numbers, we are undivided in numbers. The power of women is an unparalleled force that can withstand the threats to our civil liberties but only if we march together towards the goal of a better future.
Megan Bonney is a Staff Writer for The Comment.