Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.
Truer words have never been spoken but recently with the events hosted this past weekend, the phrase has seemed to carry more weight than ever. The women’s marches hosted around the globe sparked more awareness of women and human rights than anything else seemed to in quite a while.
The women’s marches were held mostly around parts of America but cities like Paris, London and even Toronto and Ottawa also held their own gatherings with which to protest against Trump’s policies which condemn and limit women’s rights as well as enforcing regulations that limit human rights as they pertain to everyone.
The marches were held all over the world but the ones with the best human interest stories pertained to the marches held in Washington and New York City. Key note speakers included (but were not limited to) America Ferrera, Alicia Keys, Scarlett Johannsson, Ashley Judd and Madonna. Male speakers like Michael Moore also held weight to the topic as they took to the mic to declare their unfiltered opinions on Trump’s regulations.
America Ferrera, a Latin American with strong political views, put Trump on blast and proceeded to call him out on his communist policies. She implored him to resist his demonization against people of colour as well as begging him to have sympathy for women and women’s rights. Her vocal speech was strong and unshakable and the points she made were factual and inspired by Trump claims. Many of us will remember Ms. Ferrera as Carmen, a shy and reserved teenager whose place amongst her friend group never seemed to fit her quite right. This strong woman has certainly come a long way from her Sisterhood days and she’s successfully utilizing her platform to discuss the issues that truly matter.
Ashley Judd took to the stage to vent her empowered feelings about the current president in relation to her state as a “nasty woman.” Her speech was both aggressive and pointed as well as being thoroughly inspired and grounded. Her claims about being a woman in the modern age—a woman who is able to have full control over her body and her life—was extremely relatable as many young women cheered her on and joined the “nasty women” movement.
Scarlett Johannsson, a world renowned actress, preached about the impact Planned Parenthood had on her life when she was 15. She talked about how they helped her gain control of her health and how they offered her a safe platform with which to discuss her concerns and ask her questions without judgement. This life experience stems from Trump’s claims to cut funding for Planned Parenthood as the organization negates his own personal views on abortions. Her speech was definitely the one that held a more positive tone as she preached about wanting to support Trump and wanting to respect his position as president but she would like to see him first extend an olive branch to those affected by his flawed views.
One thing that people seem to not have grasped is the fact that the women’s marches were held to not just fight for women’s rights but to fight for the rights of everyone. With the election of Trump to the presidency, it may be seen that the rights of women and LGBTQ+ people could have been attacked as well.
The women’s marches had a mission to proclaim the rights and freedoms of individuals affected by Trump’s policies. The election of his person to the position of president has some people feeling like their own personal sanctity is being controlled by someone else who has absolutely no right to be in a position to do so. It is troubling on so many levels and the fact that these marches even occurred at all represents how strongly some of the American citizens feel about this new turning point for their country. To most, it feels as though Trump is about to undo the significant movements Obama made as it pertains to the safety of citizens.
But what happens now?
When Clinton and Trump were neck in neck in the polls during the election, Humans of New York’s Brandon issued a personal essay detailing the strong opinions he held about Trump’s ideals. Brandon himself is a celebrity in his own right as his website focuses on covering the stories and experiences of random strangers he encounters on the streets of NYC. The website has gained phenomenal recognition and is beloved by many fans around the world as it is seen as both relatable and “human”, ironically enough.
His statements, which were publicly read aloud on TV hit a chord with many people. Yes, it was only one person’s opinion but it was the right person’s opinion. It was a “human rights” opinion and that is why his statements were so powerful. A white, middle aged, American male speaking up for the rights of women and people of colour and LGBTQ+ individuals? Boom. That’s a winning class right there. The video itself has been viewed over a million times but the meaning behind it is so powerful the minds it touches cannot be counted.
The people have spoken out about that which troubles them so how do we address this and move on? It is a great judge of character to see how Trump will handle this. In a democracy, it is essential that the leader of a country acknowledge the opinions of his or her voters. A democracy consists of including everyone, regardless of race or gender or sexual orientation. And the ideals which Obama set in place may soon be compromised.
Is it too much to just sit back and wait? Probably. But the unpredictability factor of Trump’s motives is too flexible to predict. The only thing we can do is keep fighting for what we believe in and make our voices heard. As we band together to make ourselves known, our voices and our movements resonate just as loudly.
Stand up for what’s right and believe in yourself. That’s a movements we must all get behind.