Women's March in Washington about much more than Trump
Jeff Lagerquist, CTVNews.ca
Published Friday, January 20, 2017 11:10PM EST
Last Updated Saturday, January 21, 2017 2:35PM EST
Hundreds of thousands of women plan to march through the streets of the U.S. capital on President Donald Trump’s first full day in office, to send a bold message to the new administration: women’s rights are human rights, and the divisive tone of the campaign will not be tolerated in the nation’s highest office.
The protest movement that started when a Hawaii grandmother posted five words, “I think we should march,” to a popular Facebook politics group on the eve of the U.S. election has seen nearly a quarter million people sign up for the planned event in Washington, and spawned sister marches as far away as Sao Paulo, Sydney, and Zurich.
Lisa Kinsella and her step daughter are among the many Canadians who travelled to Washington, D.C. for the protest.
“We wanted to make sure we came here to lend our voices in solidarity with our American sisters,” she told CTV News Channel. “I booked the hotel on Nov. 13, just a week after Donald Trump won.”
Organizers of the Women’s March on Washington say Trump’s comments on women during his campaign threaten to undermine women’s healthcare, aid to struggling mothers, and protection against sexual violence.
With more than 227,000 guests confirmed on Facebook, and another 250,000 indicating they are interested in attending, the event could become the largest-ever demonstration tied to a presidential election Washington, D.C., has ever seen.
A rally featuring a number of speakers, activists, artists and entertainers is scheduled to begin a 10 a.m. Pop star Katy Perry, comedians Amy Schumer and Chelsea Handler, and actors Olivia Wilde, Julianne Moore, Scarlett Johansson, and Patricia Arquette are expected to a take part.
The march itself kicks off at 1:15 p.m. on Constitution Avenue.
While the initial idea for the event was to protest the presidential election result, organizers say it has come to transcend opposition to the Trump presidency.
The march promises to call attention to marginalized voices including immigrants of all statuses, Muslims, the LGBTQIA community, indigenous and racialized peoples, people with disabilities and survivors of sexual abuse.
Nonetheless, the fact that nobody will be addressing a Madame President in the U.S. for at least the next four years will be hard to ignore for those who plan to pound the pavement in protest.
Kinsella volunteered for Hillary Clinton and continues to lament that her campaign appeared to never fully recover after FBI director James Comey announced the reopening of the investigation into Clinton’s deleted emails.
“We were very upset about her loss of course, but we want to make sure we are able to stand side-by-side with other women who want to continue the fight for women’s equality,” she said.