Women – and men – of all ages, races, ethnicities and sexual preferences joined with women across the country in a “Sister” Women’s March. The Women’s March on Washington attracted hundreds of thousands of women to D.C., but for those who couldn’t make it to Washington, more than 600 “Sister” marches were held around the United States and across the world.
The marches, held one day after the Trump inauguration, were billed as the largest inaugural demonstration, drawing more than 1 million participants. A conservative estimate for Wichita was 3,000 participants. Although it was apparent most of the marchers don’t like Trump, it wasn’t billed as a march against Trump, rather a march “for” a variety of issues, including women’s rights.
The signs reflected the diversity of issues marchers supported. There were signs supporting diversity and inclusion, individuals with disabilities, rights for the LGBT community, continuation of the Affordable Care Act, equal pay for women, increasing the minimum wage, and quality education for all.
Wichitan LaWanda DeShazer, attended the rally with two friends, one of which held up a poster saying Black Lives Matter.
“The way the country is going, rights are at stake, and women’s rights are at the forefront. I’m concerned about women’s health care rights that Obama included in the Affordable Care Act. All across the board, wages are low. But if you break it down for women, they’re even lower,” said DeShazer. “I care about the rights of women, but I care about the rights of everyone, that’s why I marched.”
The organizers worked hard to make sure the march attracted a diverse group of women and brought special attention to the unique issues of women of color.
On her blog, Meera Oliva who made the trip to Wichita for the march, wrote, “I am marching to remind Donald Trump that while he may have been sworn in as president, almost 3 million more Americans voted for someone else. He has no mandate. And we will be watching, fighting and resisting him every step of the way.”
What did Pres. Trump think of the large protests? Of course he let the world know via Twitter. In between tweets about his “long standing ovations” at CIA headquarters and his inauguration’s television ratings, he tweeted. “Watched protests yesterday but was under the impression that we just had an election!” Mr. Trump wrote. “Why didn’t these people vote? Celebs hurt cause badly.”