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Women’s March: Here’s What Should Be Next

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As defiant Americans popularized #notmypresident, a power team of civil and human rights activists came together to coordinate the newly historical Women’s March on Washington.  Women across the country (across the globe) and men who support the significance of the movement decided that it was time to be heard.  It seemed that the opinion of many was that Number 45 and his party needs a wake up call about what is important to the American people. In response to the presumed threat of the rights of women, minorities, LGBT, immigrants, the disabled, and all disenfranchised parties, an estimated five million people worldwide came together in peaceful protest against Number 45 and his political views.  This unprecedented coordination of woman power has brought the fears and concerns of people to the forefront of everyday conversations. Many are asking, “What’s next?”  How can supporters of the Women’s March show that this was not just their time in the spotlight?  How do supporters ensure that the voices of millions are not diluted by D.C. and state level rhetoric?  How can supporters make this movement continue?   “This is the moment of the beginning of the revival of the women’s movement,” Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., said during the protest in Washington on Saturday. “Until every woman and girl in this country has a chance to reach her God-given potential, America will not reach its full potential.” She suggested that change won’t occur until more women are in government. For now, it starts with an action plan that looks at a goal larger than just a march.  Women have to show that this was not just a day where they could don their pussy hats and wave signs promising to grab back.  The Women’s March on Washington was about guaranteeing that women’s rights, human rights, stay front and center on the minds of everyone–especially the nation’s leaders.  The march was also about ensuring that long fought for rights and civil liberties remain intact!

Supporters of the Women’s March should prepare themselves to be constant advocates for their cause.    Advocacy, by definition, includes activities that influence decisions.  It will be the key to success of the movement sparked by the leaders, speakers and participants of the Women’s March.     Here are a few things that we all can do to protect, support, and perpetuate the movement:  

  1. Contact your elected officials and tell them what you want.  Tell them what you need.  Tell them what you specifically protest or disapprove of.
  2. Volunteer for a cause that you support.  If you believe in religious freedom for all, give your time to an organization that works for this cause.
  3. Educate yourself about issues.  Though everyone loves a story that paints the picture of an individual’s plight, facts and figures are important.  They can provide a solid argument that demonstrates an ongoing need.
  4. Support local organizations with issues you believe in and that parallel those highlighted at the national level.

When people say that they don’t understand the big deal about the history making Women’s March on January 21, 2017, co-chair Bob Bland explained it simply in his Washington Post interview.   

“We must have proportional leadership of all… When you look at the face of this nation, that needs to be the face of our leadership.”

The citizens of the United States of America have many options for fulfilling their life’s goals.  However, lest we not forget that this is only possible today because of the sacrifices of men and women before us and the ensuing laws that have been developed to ensure that all people have equal opportunities.   If you joined the movement, you surely know that not so long ago, women could not vote, unchaperoned women were frowned upon, women who gave birth risked losing their jobs, and reproductive health freedoms continue to be threatened every day.   The March on Washington has brought forth many issues that we all take for granted.   Women and men who believe in human rights, civil rights, and the liberties associated with a free nation have to continue to make a big deal about the March on Washington.   Need more guidance?  Follow the Women’s March on Facebook and learn more about their 10 Actions 100 Days initiative.  Step one is to reach out to Senators so that they hear your voice. Women make the world go round.  Now that Number 45 and his policies are in office, supporters of equal rights and humans rights must remain strong and must be willing to show the undisputed power of women. Do raise your voice.  Do be respectful.  Do be a part of the solution.

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