“I am woman hear me roar in numbers too big to ignore and I know too much to go back and pretend” was sung by Helen Reddy back in the days of early marches for women’s rights, and on 1/21/17 it was the rally of the SISTERHOOD MARCH in downtown LA. With an estimated 750,000 strong, the throngs of this showing of solidarity for Women’s Rights was an absolute confirmation of those that stand with women. It is said that for every 1 you know of, there are 10,000 you don’t know of.
From the time I arrived at the N0Ho Redline Station, I realized that this was no ordinary march and that it was being taken to heart and soul by numbers that were staggering. On the Redline in NoHo, train cars upon train cars were jam packed by the Women’s March supporters. It took a few times until my companion and I were able to slither into a car and find a seat.
Upon our arrival at Pershing Square, there must have been 75,000 people jammed in all around the actual square and the station. There were also people in the tall buildings all around us displaying posters lending their support for Women’s Rights. There were at least 5 helicopters at any given time flying about us taking it all in. A green helicopter made the most passes and everytime they flew over us we all raised our fist to show our solidarity for Women’s Rights.
So many wonderful posters being held by women, children and men that it made me cry to know that these people really cared about Freedon of Choice and making a difference. The Womem’s March sponsors had expected only 80,000 supporters, but instead found themselves having to soak in the vastness of an estimated 750,000 supporters. I had never seen such a turnout from back in the day when we had to make ourselves heard above the din of the Monroe Doctrine and the Viet Nam War. Back then I burned my bra and chanted at Anti-Viet Nam war demonstrations “Hell No We Won’t Go.” Those were the days for me. We were young, full of hope and felt that our voice mattered.
This time there were a lot of young people attending, but there were also gray hairs such as myself mustering up the energy to stand by our decades’ old convictions. “Power To The People” John Lennon used to chant in his song and it has not lost the force of it’s message. We all need to stand together and let the world know that we will not stand silently by and let all that we worked for in the 60’s be lost. NO!
Not content to stand at Pershing Square, we made our way up The Nickel (5th Street) and over to Spring Street where the Women’s March was moving toward City Hall. Along the way residents of lofts and apts. were blasting their music for the marchers to let us know that they stood with us in spirit. Those friends that could not march did tell us that they were with us in spirit. Those that did not attend the LA march did go to the marches in Santa Brabara, CA and San Francisco, CA if they were able. There were marches all around the world, but the numbers were not available at the time I’m writng this. I’m guessing millions. This bolsters my old heart and deeply entrenches my resolve.
Along Spring Street there were many booths of various ideologies and there were venders that had food. Of those, there was a popped chip company handing out free bags of their deoicious products. Yummy… and this held me over until l got home as all the eating establisments were packed and I was going to have to wait for hour or more to eat. Kept moving toward City Hall. Upon reaching the cross street where City Hall was, we were turned back. We were told “No more room.”
On our way up and back, streets bordering Spring Street were clogged with marchers heading toward City Hall. We were told that City Hall was at compasity and that is when we first heard the number 750,000. I beleive it. Even side streets such as Main Street were clogged with marchers. So clogged that busses were lined up trying to avoid the march route. LOL. After taking a sidetrip over to The Nickel and Main Street to see the latest additions of Street Art at Indian Alley, we decided to head over to Clifton’s Cafeteria which had a waiting list of an hour -and- a -half. Many buildings were closed, including the famous Bradbury Building, due to the march.
Heading down 7th Street from Broadway we wanted to go over to St. Vincent Court with it’s Europen flavor for a bite. No go. All of the quaint little cafes were clogged with people and no place to sit. Walking up to Flower on 7th there were still lots of marchers gathering and working out what to do now. We slipped onto the Redline there and went over to the other side of Pershing Square by the Central Market. There at a bar, we bought a few drinks and waited for a few. The street was full of marchers. The bar was packed with marchers.
I am really interested in how much those venures in LA made that historical day. That’s right! We made history marching for women’s rights.
After waiting awhile for things to calm down…HA! We went back onto the Redline to head to Union Station because we had figured out that was the only way to get a seat on the Redline heading back to NoHo.
Upon arriving in NoHo we wandered into The Federal where there was a jammed packed house of marchers. Hats and t-shirts gave them away. It was there that we found out that there were marches geld at the NoHo Station and Universal Station by those that were not able to board the Redline train to Pershing Square/Civic Center. At The Federal I was able to shoot a photo of a man in an awesome shirt.
The theme for the marchers seemed to be about the pussy and grabbing it as I saw more shirts, posters and chants about that than anything.
News outlets had the following to say: CNN “Sister March”; LA Times “Largest turnout since immigration March in 2006” and “Largest in over a decade; ABC Worls News “150,000 in LA. One of many around the world.” “Organizers expected 80,000 and welcomed 750,000.”
For myself, I think it was at least 750,000 marchers. Who knows, perhaps it was more like 1 million attendees marching in solidarity for Women’s Rights which includes Social Security and Medi-Care and not just Pro-Choice.
Thank you Dove for walking the official march route yesterday and smudging it and blessing it for those that would come hoping to make a difference.
United we stand, divided we fall. Power to the pussy!