Roxanne Watson, guest writer
The day after the Inauguration of President Donald Trump, millions of people throughout our country congregated in some of the nation’s most populous cities to peacefully protest and shed light on impeding issues surrounding women’s rights.
In Los Angeles, the persistent rain storms ceased and the sky was filled with hope and excitement as over 750,000 individuals filled the streets, each attending for various reasons. The March was set to begin in Pershing Square, but the hundreds of thousands of people who willingly participated transformed the entire block into their starting line. Many APU students hopped on the Gold Line and made their way to Union Station to play their part in the monumental moment.
APU Sophomore English major, Madison Kwalwasser, expounded on the overwhelming amount of people that marched.
“The sheer number and diversity of people who attended was very impactful, [displaying] not just ethnic diversity, but also cultural diversity,” Kwalwasser said.
Small households as well as large families comprised of differing ethnicities and cultural backgrounds marched in solidarity alongside each other for their cherished causes.
Some of the attendees were seasoned protest veterans, but for some, including APU Sophomore English major, Kristi Reyes, this was a new experience.
“I marched because I’m coming to a point in my life where the beliefs and values I have collected over the past years have been changed,” Reyes said. “I no longer want to raise my fist silently in agreement, but stand up. Marching was a start in my supporting the celebration and protest on behalf of human rights, because if we can’t celebrate humanity and protest against injustice, then what do we do?”
Knowledge of the March this past weekend was inevitable as social media blew up, extinguishing any possibility of the event being ignored. The vastness of the Women’s March not only affected those who attended, but also those who were not able to.
“[The March] gave me a lot of hope. This past year has felt like a tugging war between two sides without any peace. It gave me hope for our nation’s future knowing that our country contains individuals and establishments who will not passively let these next few years take their toll, but will fight for what they believe to be true and just,” APU Senior English major Lexi Sincere said.
Though Women’s March on Los Angeles gave off a positive, hot pink aura, there is always something to be improved upon. One of the prevailing slogans chanted by crowds and streamed across poster-boards was “Love Trumps Hate,” echoing the event’s foundational message of love. But one could not help but notice the negative undercurrents of hate and disgust geared towards the Trump administration or opposing viewpoints.
“I think it was beautiful and differentiating that the protest was clearly founded on love in order to combat injustice. Yet, I did see some signs and heard some comments that did not seem to stem from a love,” Reyes said.
Albeit its flaws, the National Women’s March on Jan. 21 will be marked down in bold pink ink as the biggest and arguably the most powerful peaceful protest the world has ever encountered.
For a day, the streets of Los Angeles and other major cities became a platform for oppressed minorities to voice their sentiments and demonstrate to the world how they will continue to fight for equality and basic fundamental rights. For many, the Women’s March was in rebuttal to the previous day and the presidential inauguration, but for all in attendance and in solidarity with the marchers the protest symbolized a united front that many Americans have been craving for many months.