I had joined millions of people sending a strong message that women are listening, we’re watching,and if our reproductive rights are taken away, we will regroup and fight.
Right after the election, my outraged colleagues discussed plans to march together at the Women’s March on Washington. I help run a women-led national non-profit that pulls me deep into the world of politics, and I travel to DC often. Washington would have been the obvious march for me to attend. But as I knitted pussy hats on the train to and from my Hudson Valley home and Washington, my parental heartstrings tugged me towards my children.
My daughter and I had been having almost daily discussions about women’s issues. We worried Planned Parenthood would take a direct hit from this new extreme right-wing administration. I remembered a time when women fought for reproductive rights, before woman had control of their bodies, before legalized abortion. It was during the Women’s Liberation Movement of the 1970’s when I discovered that the personal is political.
Defunding Planned Parenthood, an organization my daughter and I had both used and supported, was personal. So I decided to march in Boston in solidarity with her, near her home, against a sexist, anti-women administration that aimed to take basic human rights away from my most cherished loves, my children.
At the end of the march, I felt high, like I was floating above a dark cloud. I had accomplished something that was bigger than me. I had joined millions of people sending a strong message that women are listening, we’re watching,and if our reproductive rights are taken away, we will regroup and fight.
With the constant barrage of harmful, regressive policies spewing out of this administration and those who condone it, it’s been hard to sustain the enthusiasm. So, while a part of me would like to crawl under the covers and wait out the nightmare, the radiance of the March still shines hopeful.
There was a young guy holding a sign that said, “Mom would have been very proud of you. Love, DAD” He was smiling, but there was a story there that I’m sure would have broken my heart.
Acting on conviction is our best defense. I’m writing to ensure we don’t normalize this right-wing agenda. And I’m working locally and nationally to vote Trump and his cronies out of office.
My hope is that we can harness the energy of the March into launching a movement that goes beyond the current administration. Change happens when people speak out and demand it. Respecting and protecting the notion that equal rights are human rights is always worth fighting for.
©2017 Nadine Robbins. Unauthorized use of the images and copy from these stories is prohibited.