“What are women marching for on 21st January?”
In the last few days I have heard this question over and over again.
There seems to be confusion and ambiguity about the intention of the march.
Are we marching against Donald Trump?
Are we marching against sexism?
Are we marching because we wanted a woman to be president?
Are we marching for the Affordable Care Act?
Has the march lost its meaning since the idea of it started back in November?
This will not be the first march I attend. I grew up in a border city that has been a drug cartel conflict zone in the past. I grew up angry at the system, at corruption, at impunity and the pain of seeing friends lose their loved ones to this stupid war.
So I marched whenever I could. It became the best way of becoming part of a community that would scream for a change, for justice, for peace.
I’ve marched dressed in white for peace. I’ve marched in silence for justice. I’ve marched with flowers for those that have disappeared. I’ve marched with signs because of those who have taken illegitimate power and abused it. I’ve marched in tears for the thousands of woman, men and children found dead along the border. I’ve marched loudly for Palestine and Libya. I’ve marched with my family. I’ve marched alone.
If you have been to a march before, you know how the collective energy spreads through the lines, getting stronger with every step. It’s alive.
Marches have changed history.
I cannot speak for every woman coming to the different marches across the U.S.A. and worldwide, but I know that I am marching as a Latina because I want a better world for my son to grow up in. I want a world where Latinos (especially Mexicans) are not seen as criminals and rapists. I want a world where groping is not okay; where women will not be objectified and where everyone will be treated with kindness.
I think every cause is legitimate as long as its intention is one of growth, love and kindness. So bring your cause and your heart out to the streets.
As Hillary Clinton said,
“Human rights are women’s rights and women’s rights are human rights. Let us not forget that among those rights are the right to speak freely—and the right to be heard”.
On Saturday January, 21st, let’s show the world that whatever cause brings us here, we are sisters, we are strong, we stand together and we will be heard.
“Never underestimate the power of a woman.” ~ Nellie L. McClung
Author: Montse Leon
Image: Library of Congress
Editor: Khara-Jade Warren