My wife marched in the Women’s March this weekend. She took our oldest daughter. I stayed home with our two younger kids, and I watched online as image after image after image came in from all over the country… And all over the world. Images of people gathering in solidarity. Images of giant crowds. Images of peaceful protest. Images of women displaying their strength, and demanding to be seen and heard and respected. Images of love and hope and light in the darkness. I spent a big part of the day with tears in my eyes. If you haven’t seen it yet, THIS RIGHT HERE is one of the coolest presentations of what happened all over the world on January 21. It was gorgeous. And it was healing. Here are a few images my wife came home with from the Women’s March in Nashville…
Something deep in me believes that humanity has the power to make things better. Something at my core agrees with Martin Luther King, Jr. when he says that “The moral arc of the universe is long, but it bends toward justice.” At the very heart of me, there is HOPE… But for the last couple months, that hope has been under attack. And it’s not–as some have suggested–because “my candidate” didn’t win… As if the collective sorrow so many feel at the election of such an obviously awful man is due to some sort of display of poor sportsmanship or being a “sore loser.” The reason it rocked me to my core that so many people were willing to vote for such a narcissistic misogynist is because it shook the hope that is at the heart of me. I started thinking, “Maybe we ARE all hopelessly broken. Maybe the darkness IS stronger than the light. Maybe we ARE outnumbered. Maybe things ARE all going to shit. Maybe white supremacy is going to win this war. Maybe I have created an optimistic echo chamber, and the reality of the situation is that the majority of the people around the world are in favor of demonizing immigrants, building walls, and attacking and idea of “The Truth” until that term has no meaning anymore.”
Many people have been asking what this march was for. Why did people march? What did it accomplish? Well… It wasn’t about something as simple as “republican versus democrat.” There were plenty of republicans out marching…
It wasn’t even about declaring “Donald Trump is a broken, women-hating man-child who is so dangerously disqualified and so woefully filled with character flaws that he should never be allowed to hold the most powerful office in the nation.” As true as this statement is, it is my sense that this march is so much bigger than that. This is about a core value that equality is better than oppression. It’s about a belief that equality is better than patriarchy. It’s about the belief that equality is better than white supremacy. It’s about the belief that equality is better than economic injustice. It’s about the belief that equality is better than denying civil rights to our neighbors who are LGBTQ. It’s about the fact that we still have to endure images like this snapshot of a CNN panel discussion on the Women’s March:
And it’s about the fact the the guy next to the one woman on the panel MIGHT be looking at this woman’s cell phone, but it would not be surprising IN THE LEAST–even in a “professional setting”–if he was totally checking out her chest.
As to the issue of Why People Marched, here’s what my wife (who doesn’t like using capital letters) wrote: “please tell me why,” i have seen people ask… i have tried and tried and tried to think of words to explain why i marched today. and i have concluded that i could write an essay of 10,000 words, and not a one of them would matter to those of you don’t already get it. and that is the saddest thing i can think of.”
Here’s what a friend of mine on Facebook wrote:
As far as I can tell, this march has meant a lot of different things to a lot of different people. The only thing I can speak to with any authority is what this Women’s March meant to me as I stayed home with our two younger children. Here’s what it meant to me:
WE ARE NOT ALONE.
All over the world, there are people like my wife and my friends and myself who are disgusted at the grossness that has been okayed and overlooked and endorsed and encouraged by huge amounts of people over the course of this presidential campaign. And these marches–these people coming together to stand AGAINST that grossness–they fill me with hope. And that hope fills me with life and energy and love. And it fills me with hope for future generations… For people like these little peanuts:
And for people like my own daughter… Strong and fierce and smart and funny and sweet and powerful and filled with righteous anger at the injustice she sees all around her:
So thank you, women who marched! Thanks to the men also–both the ones who marched, and the ones who stayed home with the kids–but thank you most of all to the women. Thank you for your strength and for your compassion and for the way you make the world better. Thank you for the voices that won’t be silenced. Thank you to those of you who are willing to be unapologetically in-your-face about demanding and preserving your rights. Thank you for letting my daughter see how many of you there are out there. Thank you to my wife for showing our kids every day that women are strong and feminism is totally kick ass. Thank you for filling me with hope. And thank you for the reminder that WE ARE NOT ALONE. I’ll leave you with this…
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