Since the official inauguration of President Donald Trump, there has been powerful backlash all around the world.
Some of Trump’s first orders as President of the United States include limiting or completely removing healthcare access to millions of Americans, banning immigrants, refugees or anyone who looks different from entering the country and threatening the rights of the LGBTQ community.
Laws implemented to protect and welcome anyone are being threatened just weeks into Trump’s presidency. Since the dawn of American history, if people demanded change in the government or society, they had to take it upon themselves to initiate that change. In the wake of the new presidential administration, people have taken to the streets to rebel against what they deem wrong.
The Women’s March on Washington was one of the first major acts of protest since Trump was sworn in. It should have been clear that the march wasn’t going to change our misogynistic president’s opinion of women in one day. No single demonstration can fix a problem that quickly. But it did open the eyes and minds of people who witnessed the millions of women, men and children march to protect women’s rights.
The Women’s March was just the beginning. Activists around the world have begun planning their own marches and protests to have their voices heard and stand together.
Some people protest because they are personally affected by Trump’s demands. Others protest in solidarity to stand tall with those being bullied by the new administration. No matter the reason, protesters are needed right now to help fight against the political system, which is clearly singling out individuals who do not meet Trump’s tremendous standards. It’s been recognized that Trump is picking and choosing which countries to ban from the U.S., but the countries he does business with are unharmed.
After 10 days of silence following Trump’s inauguration, former president Barack Obama released a statement expressing his appreciation for the ongoing protests and political involvement. He said he was “heartened by the level of engagement taking place in communities around the country.”
“Citizens exercising their Constitutional right to assemble, organize and have their voices heard by their elected officials is exactly what we expect to see when American values are at stake,” Obama said in his statement.
In response to Trump’s recent efforts to censor climate change information on the National Park Service’s Twitter account as well as other environmental agencies, the Scientists’ March on Washington has been planned, although the date is not released yet.
A Tax Day March has been proposed as well because of Trump’s resistance to release his tax returns, which he promised he would release if he ever ran for office.
These protests aren’t going magically present Trump with a heart or brain like in “The Wizard of Oz.” However, it is going to make him look and maybe even reflect on his own actions and decisions.
It’s easy to sit in your living room watching Facebook live videos of marches and think it’s a waste of time. It is true that while every protest may not change the world, some certainly have.
On August 28, 1963, Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his famous “I Have a Dream” speech in the middle of a massive civil rights march around the Lincoln memorial in Washington D.C. The speech that changed the course of the civil rights movement at the time and is still often talked about today.
More than 100 people attended a protest in Plattsburgh last weekend to stand with Standing Rock Sioux Tribe against the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline. These small fights add up and create change that we desperately need right now.
Do not remain complacent. If we stand together, we can make a change.
Email Laura Schmidt firstname.lastname@example.org