Over 600 women and men from Hudson county came together to unify their voices after waking up to an unexpected reality: Donald Trump winning the presidential election. These same women and men are making a historic trip to the Women’s March on Washington on January 21, 2017 to participate in the biggest inauguration protest the United States has ever seen.
What began as supportive conversations, between both friends and total strangers, over Facebook and at school drop offs, quickly blossomed into a local movement that is gaining momentum faster than anyone could have imagined.
Within days, independent groups sold out seats on available buses and continued to secure more buses to meet the growing demand. As of right now, there are at least 11 sold out buses leaving from Hoboken and Jersey City.
“There would have been so many more, had we been able to secure additional transportation. We hustled and tapped our resources to help would-be marchers make the trip by reaching out to our community to find seats!” said Lindsey Brown, Co-Captain of the Hoboken/Jersey City Women’s March Contingent.
While each person in this group has his or her own personal reasons for attending the march, the reality is that this election ignited a unifying spark within us all, one that looks beyond individual goals and struggles and brings communities together like never before. Be they reproductive rights, civil rights, immigrants rights, worker’s rights, LGBTQIA rights or environmental protection, all of these represent something very essential to us all – human rights.
And this group unanimously agreed that they are worth fighting for!
Attendees Provide Responses to #WhyIMarch
Jodi Friedman, an assistant principal from a diverse Title I school states,
“I can’t handle the fact that my children come to school scared or sad about what they hear coming out of the mouth of our President Elect, or the fact that they fear for their family’s future in this country! I can’t stand that some people still believe in the idea it’s okay ‘not to see color.’ I can’t be a white leader in a school serving children of color and not actively fight beyond my school’s walls for their future, our future. I feel that I need to use the fire that has been lit inside of me daily to use my white privilege to help others!”
Ceallaigh Fogonogelo Pender, artist/feminist/activist says, “I refuse to stay silent in the face of bigotry, misogyny, division and hate. I refuse to be complicit to the hate, by quietly hiding in the safety of our liberal areas of NYC. When I heard Trump speaking about sexual assault the way he did, something in me broke. We will only rise if we stand together.”
Jennifer Fox, US Citizen by choice responded, “I am Canadian by heritage and a US Citizen by choice. I originally signed up and invited friends to pack my mini-van. Little did I know it would explode into this. What started out as a spur of the moment ‘I should do this,’ has grown into more of a feeling of obligation.
I watched the C-Span coverage of the representatives brave enough to stand up for equality by not certifying the electoral votes and I am livid at the fact that not a single senator chose to join the fight. It’s like a cloud of resignation has taken over the progressives in our country. But if I am unwilling to speak up, why should I expect them to? I go back and forth feeling like marching is futile, perhaps even dangerous, yet feeling like perhaps, it could be the spark that fuels the flame to ignite a movement. This is not about being anti-Trump, it’s about giving voice to the very reasons I chose to become a citizen of this country. Equality and opportunity for all.”
Barbara Farrell Glore, Retired college professor/mother/grandmother states, “I am joining the March in DC because I feel strongly that the incoming Administration is fundamentally hateful and anathema to every value in my belief system regarding the future of our children and grandchildren, who need safeguarding in terms of civil rights and human dignity. The ways our planet and climate need protection through the belief and implementation of scientific proof and evidence. The ways women’s rights are human rights. The ways public education is important for our quality of life. The ways public officials should be our advocates and not self-serving, corrupt, and or individuals who clearly lean toward authoritarian rule.
And finally, against anyone who would embrace hostile nations before embracing the institutions of our country which work to protect us and keep us safe. And finally, I will march for all the people who cannot march themselves because that’s the vision I have for this Country that I love.”
Brought together by a desire for action, this group has found a common goal, and it will not end with the momentous Women’s March on Washington on January 21st. This is just the beginning. The four co-captains of one of the local bus groups, Lindsey Brown, Grace Park, Jenifer Semenza and Kristin Zangrilli, are compelled to seize this energy and put it to good use going forward.
“We’ve already scheduled a follow up social for the end of this month and plan to meet regularly and will continue to take action. Where we go from here no one knows, but the sky is the limit and the cause important to us all,” says Kristin Zangrilli.
Source: Kristin Zangrilli