Poughkeepsie Women’s March Across the Hudson
On January 21st I took part in the Poughkeepsie Women’s March Across the Hudson. A sister march of the national Women’s March on Washington D.C., the Poughkeepsie March was an inclusive rally for everyone who cares about women’s rights, immigrant rights, workers’ rights, LGBQTIA rights, reproductive rights, and racial and economic equity. Two local women, both first-time activists, came together and in a few days planned the event. They expected a turnout of one hundred people at the most. The Poughkeepsie Women’s March that took place over the Walkway drew a crowd between 4,000-5,000 people! I was there and here are some things that I learned on that march.
I Learned that:
10. even though the idea of being in such a large crowd terrified me (and others) it truly was a loving and all-inclusive place. I also want to point out that many of us overcame our fear of being in the crowd because we knew how important it was for us to show up and put aside our personal fears.
9. the march meant something different to every single person. I was kind of upset that a local radio station reported that the march was an Anti-Trump march. I thought that was careless reporting, but after I attended that march I found that for some it was just that. Others marched for women’s rights, healthcare, LGBQTIA rights, climate change and reproductive rights. Others marched for racial equality and immigration. I saw a cute little boy holding a sign that said, “Muslims are Awesome” Teachers were out as well concerned about the future of education! You name the issue and I bet it was represented there.
8. my friends that DO support the current administration respect me enough not to bash me online, unfriend me, or leave cruel comments. ( If anything this respect between us has made us stronger friends, as I have seen people torn apart over the current system. We shall agree to disagree.)
7. protest has no age limit. ( My bucket was filled by witnessing people from all different age groups and genders taking part in this march. The elderly were well represented, as well as families. Thank you. It is because of YOU that I do not fear growing older. You give me courage!)
6. real men do not fear wearing the pink pussy hat! ( I LOVE you guys out there with your daughters, wives, partners, mothers, and friends. Real men respect women and stand by them.)
5. when your close friends and community support the current President and his administration it take great strength and courage to come out and march. ( I know someone who hid the fact that she was going to be marching because she was afraid of what people would say. I know she isn’t the only one. You are brave to stand up for what you believe in even if it’s not popular among your peers.)
4. wheelchairs, canes and oxygen tanks can’t stop people from marching. ( I see you! I stand by you!)
3. after not spending much of my time paying attention to politics and the hard facts I have changed. You all have changed me. Since the march I have been sending emails and on the phone. My voice matters and so does yours.
2. maybe we needed this election, this president, and these things to happen to get some of us off our butts and be involved. I’m hoping this all turns out to be a positive game changer if we stay focused and get our voices heard. Change doesn’t come from one person.
1. together we are stronger.
Have you ever participated in a march?