BUTCHER ON LA-On Saturday, January 21, 2017, an estimated 750,000 people took to the streets of downtown Los Angeles in support of the Women’s March on Washington organized as a day of action, celebration, and protest in cities across the country and world. A local announcement billed it as an event for: “Everyone who stands for human rights, workers’ rights, civil rights, and compassion for our shared humanity.”
It was wonderfully festive, totally unorganized, peaceful as could be. About half of the participants, by my observation, were young (mostly) women who'd never marched before; the rest were all the rest of us. It was joyous and magical!
Said one participant, echoed by many, backed by so much pink: “There was an incredible politeness from the majority of the protesters. People were so close and I had never had so many boobs bump into me but everyone was saying ‘sorry’ and ‘excuse me.’ It was amazing! There was a variety of people there from old to young and of all races. The women who spoke were amazing. Janet Hahn was great and I think made us proud to be Angelenos.”
There was no appreciable parade route. My adult son Steven, his friend Raj and I walked from City Hall to Pershing Square, got as close as we could, and along with a mass of other people, turned around where we were to march back to City Hall. I saw bunches of LA City traffic officers but no police. Of course there was no need as it was peaceful, safe for babies and children and dogs, and so many women. Everywhere you looked, in every direction. I’ve been in large marches and rallies and this was by far among the largest of LA gatherings.
For me, it felt historic. To march with my son – on the weekend just before my 60th birthday – felt glorious and so very hopeful!
(Julie Butcher writes for CityWatch, is a retired union leader and is now enjoying her new La Crescenta home and her first grandchild. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on her new blog ‘The Butcher Shop - No Bones about It.’) Prepped for CityWatch by Linda Abrams.