This Saturday, thousands of people were gathered in St. Paul for a march on the Capital. Despite the light drizzle and chilly temperature, the march was a roaring success. It was a march for women’s rights, a show of support for Planned Parenthood, and a resistance of President Trump.
The protest was organized by a committee consisting of 125 people, who felt the need to counteract the hate brought about by this election.
“I went to the protest because I felt like I need to take action, stand up for what I believe in, and be a part of something as big and important as this was,” said freshman Shayla Courteau.
Freshman Cor Barnhill says that their cause for protesting, was more personal than just support. “Although I am not a woman,” they said, “I used to be, and I have been sexually assaulted, so I know how that feels, and I still have a female body, and we have a sexist president who has assaulted women. I have known the struggle of being a woman and being marginalized. And it doesn’t feel good… at all.”
The march and rally brought together an astonishing 100,000 people, all united against Trump, and the fight against misogyny. Not only was this a nationwide movement, but also global. People gathered in cities all over Europe, Canada, and Asia.
Cali Juberian, a sophomore who was one of the 470,000 protesters that attended the protest in D.C. is amazed by the experience. “I think it really unifies people. I knew that all of these issues were important, but just seeing how important it was to so many people, and hearing their experiences and stories, and getting to meet all of these incredible people is a really big part of what the Women’s March stands for.”
Haley Carlson was another very passionate protester who traveled to Washington. Carlson went because her sister thought that going to the march in St.Paul wasn’t enough. She described the march as “chaotic” and “emotional” due to the unexpected massive attendance. The people seemed to wander around with their signs high in the air, she said.
Out of all the attendees at the protest in St. Paul on Saturday, only one arrest was made, of a counter protester who was “holding a sign that said ‘homo sex is sin,’ and macing all the people around him,” said Courteau.
Apart from the arrest of that one man, the rest of the protest went smoothly. Thousands of people were gathered in one area for many multiple hours without any show of conflict or clashing. The Women’s March 2017 is being called the largest protest in U.S. history by many media outlets.
One point of concern for people who participated in the nationwide protests on Saturday, and those who didn’t, is the results. With the recent ban on US funds promoting abortion overseas, perhaps the efforts of 3.2 million people across the globe weren’t quite enough to halt the agenda that the new president has in mind.
But Barnhill still has hope. “I would like to see the ‘president’ acknowledge all the horrible things he’s said, and then just do a better job. And more noise means more of his attention.”
We will see how the efforts of all those who participated in this massive coming together play out. Whether it will halt the motives of Trump, or will leave him unscathed will soon be revealed.