I have been thinking hard about how to respond to people who are so angry about this march, about the show of solidarity. What makes you so angry? What makes you so scared? Are you embarrassed? Embarrassed that women in the United States were marching for rights they already had? Embarrassed that we are focusing on ourselves when women in other parts of the world are suffering? See, I am confused that all of sudden, after months of your vitriol about “America First” and “ban the Muslims” you are so concerned about the quality of life of women around the world. When did you start caring? Was it before or after you said that the young black and brown boys gunned down in the street deserved it? Was it when you shamed women for wanting access to birth control and told them if they were too poor to take care of a child and buy their own pills they shouldn’t have sex? Was it when you said people should lighten up when a disabled person is made fun of? Was it when you equated all Muslims with terrorists and all black people with gangsters? Was it when you said writing vagina on a sign was profanity, but excused away “locker room” talk? Was it when you supported building a wall around our country, like prison? Was it when you wished harm to those that exert their First Amendment rights? So forgive me if I don’t buy into your spontaneous sanctimony on human rights.
The Women’s March wasn’t a march just for women’s rights. And it wasn’t just a march for women in America. And it wasn’t a march against men. It was a march for the poor black men whose oppression is generational and heavy as cement. It was for the women who are sexualized and paraded on posters and around poles. It was for children whose zip code determines the quality of their school. For the white men in the middle of America whose fear and trouble was caused by a corporate greed that turned around and used it to grab more power. It was for my lesbian and gay friends who want to make health care decisions for each other and be able to raise their children together without fear. It was for the transgender people in my life that are minimized and criticized. It was for the women in other parts of the world who are victimized and who are now wondering if we will continue to stand up for the wrongs against them now that we are focusing only on “American First”. It is for the immigrants who risk their lives and divide their families to get here.
So keep asking yourself why we marched. Keep wondering why the world marched with us. Why the world put you on watch. But I can tell you: it was against the hate that comes out of your pores when you see us stand up to people like you. If you want to know why we march, look in the mirror.