in photosets, politics

There are no words

Yesterday was the Seattle Womxn’s March, an event intended to signal solidarity with all the people who might be marginalized under a Trump administration. An estimated 130K people (more than 2x the 50,000 that was estimated) marched the 3.5 miles from Judkins Park to the Seattle Center. I was part of that group.

According to the site’s press release, this was one of more than 200 events planned in 46 states and 30 countries (The New York Times has a rundown of all the events).

Seattle’s event was “a grassroots response to the 2016 election, according to Paula Goelzer, a Seattle-based birth doula, who started the Facebook event for the Womxn’s March on Seattle after she and her colleagues heard about the march in Washington D.C.” (FYI: This is one of the most Seattle sentences that has ever been written)

As I headed downtown to join the March from its 4th and Pike entrance, I noticed the city was eerily quiet – probably because most people were already at the March’s opening rallying point in Judkins.

This was supposed to be a silent march, and as I got into the crowd, I did notice things were much more quiet and less raucous than I would’ve expected. Occasional cheers did erupt throughout the marching line, but there was an eerie, magical feeling as we all headed down the street.

One thing the event definitely affirmed to me was the creativity and spirit of my fellow Seattle residents. Lots of creative signs were out in force.

I’m going to have a more detailed post with my favorite signs from the event later this week.

As the march reached its endpoint, we did notice a few crazies. A man standing off to the side of the street. One Chinese woman with a thick accent and a Pepe shirt started screaming “BUILD THAT WALL” at a lot of the marchers (don’t get me started on why this makes no sense). Fortunately, there was a woman following her around with a sign that said “Ignore the troll.”

Throughout the day, there were wonderful moments that confirmed, yes, we still live in a country (or at least a city) that values equality and goodness. And maybe together, we can figure out how to get through this.

The thing that hit me the most were kids. Sure there were some that were clearly dragged there by their parents and had no idea WTF was going on. But others were there to take a step into political activism, to affirm that values like peace, love, and kindness were still worth fighting for in this world. I was deeply moved by them.

The future belongs to these kids. We let them down in a big way with this election. But these children remind me, “the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice.”


P.S. Also, why spell it the “Womxn’s March”? From the website:

The spelling of “Womxn’s March” has been adapted to highlight and promote intersectionality in the movement for civil right and equality. Intersectionality acknowledges that different forms of discrimination intersect, overlap, and reinforce each other, and recognizes the impact of discrimination based not only on gender, but also race, sexual orientation, gender identity, nationality, faith, class, disability, and other backgrounds.