Features, Social

Women’s March on Washington

The Women’s March on Washington took place on Saturday, January 21, 2017. All around the world, different versions of the event were being held. Canada hosted its very own version at Queen’s Park in Toronto (@WomensMarchTO). The event was done in support of women’s rights, but also focused on issues like immigration reform, the LGBTQ community, Islamphobia, and racial discrimination. With American President Donald Trump’s inauguration on January 20, it could not be a more significant time in history to stress the importance of equality for all, regardless of one’s race or gender. It is a sad state of affairs that women and minorities still have to demonstrate in this day and age, to have their rights enforced and respected. For all the progress North America has made, at the same time, Trump’s election has felt like a huge step backwards for the women’s rights movement. On January 22, Trump tweeted, “Peaceful protests are a hallmark of our democracy. Even if I don’t always agree, I recognize the rights of people to express their views.” Whether his tweets are genuine or for marketing purposes, the President has been trying to keep a more controlled image as of lately. Guest speakers at the Washington March included celebrities like Scarlet Johansson, Alicia Keys, and Madonna. Various other feminists’ speakers, human rights activists, and political leaders also spoke. A notable feature at many of the rallies included the use of creative signs that had intelligent and witty catch phrases written on them. Some signs read, “Lets get in formation,” to “I’m with Meryl,” to “Can’t believe we still have to protest this shit,” and “I’ve seen smarter cabinets at Ikea.” Standing in solidarity, cities like Lost Angeles had an estimated attendance of around 750, 000, Washington was around 500, 000, and New York at 250, 000. The marches may have only lasted a weekend, but it’s essential that moving forward we continue to practice what they preach by building on this momentum and doing more to make women’s rights a priority. Join groups, continue to vote, and make your support heard. By Rhea Braganza

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