On January 2oth, 2017, a majority of Americans had to accept the excruciating travesty of bigot, narcissist and con man, Donald J. Trump being inaugurated as the 45th president of the United States.
After enduring 10 weeks of Trump’s torturous transition into office, many Americans were quite depressed and discouraged. Trump’s cabinet picks all seemed chosen to corrupt or destroy the departments they would oversee, his continued attacks on and evasion of the press caused concern that there would be little to no transparency during his term and his assurances that he would repeal Obamacare, end Climate Change policies and slash taxes for the wealthy seemed overwhelming in their destructiveness to the future of the country.
The rotten cherry on the sundae was his inauguration speech which, instead of being gracious and expressing a positive desire to bring the country together, doubled down on the divisive lies and demagoguery of his campaign. He painted America as a third world country drowning in “carnage” and portraying all leaders who came before him (and who graciously attended his inauguration) as spiteful of the people and feckless…only The Great and Powerful Trump would give the people back their country and make ISIS, urban violence and economic injustice disappear with a snap of his fingers.
He even had the audacity the day before to talk about what the theme would be for his re-election campaign in 2020, “Keep America Great”, even though he hadn’t yet served even one day in office (or made anything great).
The impact of Trump being given such power over our country and the unsurprising but still upsetting sociopathy he continues to display weighed so heavily and oppressing on so many Americans minds.
Then the day after came.
In what has been broadly described throughout the media as the largest and most widespread protest against an incoming president in history, The Women’s March exploded across the United States and the world “in numbers too big to ignore”…far greater than the relatively sparse crowd that came to watch Trump’s inauguration. Over 600 marches across the country and more in Europe, Asia, Africa, etc. Trump likes to talk a lot about movements, he’s now facing a real and global movement that’s ready to stand dead set against him.
And he was only in office for one day.
The strength, confidence and conviction of this movement is undeniable and the driving force is unmistakeable…women. Innocently begun by a grandmother in Hawaii as an expression of dismay at Hillary Clinton’s loss and Trump’s win, women around the country and the world came together to march in staggering numbers (with men and family welcomed and by their sides) to express their resolve that they will be a formidable force against the threats that Trump and Republicans pose.
What struck me seemed to strike many others about these marches. The signs and the expressions of the marchers. Happy warriors with a variety of different issues that concern them most and such wonderful wit and creativity in expressing them. There was a sisterhood that connected all of these marchers and their issues together but it was inclusive of all who marched.
The warmth of this outpouring of conscience and activism seemed to dissolve the dark clouds that accompanied the Trump inauguration. As bad as many felt about Trump and all that his election threatens to do to the country, this incredible protest assured most Americans that they aren’t alone and that they aren’t powerless.
There is a logic to women being the ones who have ignited and drive this vast movement. Trump represents just about every horrible quality that could be ascribed to men and that has been used to mistreat and abuse women. He is the poster boy for chauvinism, sexual predators and dehumanizing.
Add to that, his brutal campaign against Hillary Clinton seemed like an allegory for what the playing field has been like for many women to compete against men. The double standard was heavily at play, Trump had actually done harm to real people, refusing to pay small businesses and forcing owners out of business, refusing to let black people rent his apartments and admitting himself that he used his position of wealth, celebrity and power to sexually assault women. He confessed to being a sex offender, he is a self-confessed criminal who committed a crime.
Meanwhile, Hillary had some top secret emails on a private server that never got into the wrong hands (if you don’t count the FBI), was not a criminal act and never hurt a single person (except herself)…and yet she was savaged by Republicans in Congress, Trump and the media as being awful and unforgivable for what she had done.
Trump also campaigned against Hillary by using that old chauvinist cudgel, women are too weak to be leaders.
There are many women who recognize Trump for who he is, many have had their own Trumps in their lives and what this march and movement seems to express is that women aren’t weak and won’t stand by and allow Trump the freedom to act against them and those they care about (which is just about everyone in the country).
There are those voters who really connected with Hillary Clinton and those who didn’t. What did seem to get lost in the campaign thanks to the Trump factor, with Hillary as the first woman candidate for president from a major party, is what a difference it could make for the country to have a woman’s sensibilities behind the desk in the White House. We certainly are already seeing what happens when a another chauvinistic dinosaur takes office, today Trump signed an executive order denying funding internationally to any NGO that provides women with abortions, even if none of the money is used for them. It almost seems like a vengeful reply to The Women’s March but Trump would have signed this anyway because it asserts male domination over women’s bodies around the world and isn’t that what his marriages and beauty contests were all about as well?
We’ve had 45 straight men as presidents (well, maybe all of them haven’t been straight), too many of whom, like Trump, have the male ego deficiencies and insecurities that lead to destructive dishonesty, heartlessness towards fellow Americans and unnecessary wars.
We’re facing a concerted effort by an old school, patriarchal, wealthy white male to reassert the dominance of the wealthy white male patriarchy in America and there seems no more powerful or ideal leaders of a movement to thwart this than the very women he and Republicans hope to dominate.
Women make up the majority of voters in the U.S.. They voted for Hillary and Democrats by a wide majority (while a majority of men went for Trump). They just staged the biggest, most peaceful and successful national and global protest we’ve seen in modern times with little time and preparation. Who better than women to lead the resistance to Trump and the social revolution that’s sought by a majority of Americans?
The Women’s March has energized and inspired Americans and many around the world, they’re fired up and ready to go.
There were so many fantastic signs marchers made for the march but one that seemed quite inspirational and reflective of the empowerment this movement inspires said, “Thanks President Obama, we’ve got this!”
It sure looks like a revolution against Trump and Trumpism is happening and the revolution will be feminized.
Now, for a few of the fantastic signs that reflect the principled and determined marchers behind them: