Marching in Washington

by Brenda W. Clough

 At least a couple dozen friends and fellow writers I know were at the Women’s March in Washington DC on January 21, but from first to last I never saw them — there were more people there than I have ever seen in my life (and I have been on the Hong Kong ferry during rush hour). It would have been easier to find a single grain of sand at the shore. Instead I marched with my husband, my college roommate Laurie Mann, and fellow BVC denizen Julianne Lee, who is going to post her own trip report soon.

Here we are in our rain-repellent gear, mine neon-yellow and hers navy. It did not rain at all, wasn’t even terribly cold. I carried all my signs downtown and after this photograph of  them set them free into the wild, where I sometimes saw them bobbing in the distance.

The crowd was immense, record-breaking, and unbelievably diverse — there were people with dogs, people with children, even a couple with a two-month old baby boy. (I told them, “You’re crazy.” Mom said, “He needs to become politically active!” And Dad said, “It’s his baptism.”) Have a look at this photo of Julianne’s, which she took in our Metro car. A dozen little girls are in the charge of a couple adult women. They are wearing pink pussy caps and pink shiny superhero capes. On the back of the capes it says “Nasty Girl.” This really gives me hope for the future!

There were dozens more marches around the globe. If you attended one, tell me about it!




About Brenda Clough

Brenda W. Clough spent much of her childhood overseas, courtesy of the U.S. government. Her first fantasy novel, The Crystal Crown, was published by DAW in 1984. She has also written The Dragon of Mishbil (1985), The Realm Beneath (1986), and The Name of the Sun (1988). Her children’s novel, An Impossumble Summer (1992), is set in her own house in Virginia, where she lives in a cottage at the edge of a forest. Her novel How Like a God, available from BVC, was published by Tor Books in 1997, and a sequel, Doors of Death and Life, was published in May 2000. Her latest novels from Book View Cafe include Revise the World (2009) and Speak to Our Desires. Her novel A Most Dangerous Woman is being serialized by Serial Box. Her novel The River Twice is newly available from BVC.


Marching in Washington — 14 Comments

    • We saw one that actually said “better” rather than “smarter”, so it was yet another case of GMTA.

  1. Julianne will post more of hers! There’s masses of them on the internet, and video as well. I’m hoping Julianne can quote some of the funnier chants we heard.

  2. We got your rain in San Francisco, and the chill. It was still an amazing evening (candlelight march, because a “March for Life” had booked the daytime period–there were still some Anti-Abortion people peppered through the crowd, but no confrontations or anger that I saw). Immensely diverse crowd–both in terms of the people there and the aspects of women’s/human rights they were supporting. Mostly, the kindness and joy was what stuck with me. It was amazing.

    Best chant: “Keep your tiny hands/Out of my underpants!”

  3. It’s astounding isn’t it, how this was going on everywhere at the same time?

    We gotta keep up the presha though, and think hard, long and deep about militias. They are very very very armed.

    Not to mention at least in ND it’s no longer a criminal act to drive over protesters.

  4. As for keeping up the pressure, a friend forwarded me this from her sister, who will be most happy to have it go further:

    [ “Received this in the mail today from Diana Chapman Walsh was president of Wellesley College 8 years ago. She recently emailed her former colleagues the following idea:

    Listen Up! The Republicans need to get the message from the majority of Americans that we value and need the benefits of Obamacare. Here’s how we do that.
    On January 23rd, everyone who feels that way (our numbers are legion) sends a note to Donald Trump with a simple message:
    “Don’t make America sick again. Improve Obamacare. Don’t repeal it.”
    One envelope for every ACA supporter in your household…even if they are under 18 years old.
    Just that simple message. Put it in an envelope, and put a stamp on it.
    On January 23rd, mail it to:
    Pres. Donald Trump
    1600 Pennsylvania Ave NW,
    Washington, DC 20500
    Can you imagine the picture of 53 MILLION letters arriving at the White House by January 26th? It will be a mountain. That image might help deter the Republicans from killing the most substantial improvement to American healthcare since the discovery of Penicillin.
    Do it today! Drop it into a mailbox near you on Monday, January 23rd.
    Please send this email to 20 (or more) of your friends, neighbors ann fellow Americans. Ask them to do the same.
    This also helps out the US Postal Service, with about $20 Million of stamp sales.
    Don’t send emails to Trump…they don’t photograph well. ” ]
    This is the response I (Foxessa) sent my friend:

    Remember how infuriating up to apoplexy it was to Andrew Jackson whenever John Quincy Adams brought in the anti-slavery petitions or would mention slavery in the House? And he never quit. There was an entire room at the Capitol that was filled to bursting with all the confiscated anti-slavery petitions by the time JQ died. And by the time JQ died, with his significant contribution of NEVER allowing the issue to be ignored despite the gag rule the House and Jackson enforced to shut him up, anti-slavery had become a real force in US politics. It did take a long time, but it HAPPENED.

  5. Photos of protests against little hands from around the world — it is so exciting to see this. Imagine how all his care-takers are working around the clock to shield him from the fact the does NOT love him.

    This is the NY Times — pay wall — so plug this into your browser’s incognito window:

    I am reminded of the Duc d’Orleans’s wife — who had heralds and so on to announce her every coming and going — a contingent of horns everywhere! That’s what he has to resort to, a constant shield wall to applaud his every word, threaten everyone who doesn’t also cheer, and hide him from reality. But we can make the realities shine through if we keep up the pressure.

    • The photo of the scientists on a ship in the Antarctic was particularly heartening, in it’s diversity and location.

      Also the one of women with physical disabilities who could not march, in a room in Souix Falls, SD, holding their own rally in solidarity. I admit that one brought tears to my eyes.

  6. Here is an article which explains why it was important to march.
    Although mail sounds nice, it is highly unlikely the Pussy Grabber in Chief will see them. He is very good at not seeing what he doesn’t want to see; his staff is tasked with keeping him happy at all costs. (Shed a tear for his poor press secretary, who has to let his boss put dog turds into his mouth for extrusion to the news cameras. No salary would be worth this.) They’ll quietly shove all the letters into sacks out of his exalted sight.
    The march spoke the language he could understand. Crowds, huge ones. Huger than his, downright Yuge! At this moment it stands as the largest protest march in history.

      • Which is the point, of course, the piling up that at least his claque sees. Just like they had to see the huge numbers of women clogging the streets around the world.

        Why didn’t they vote, he whines? They did, you little hands, they did. That is why you didn’t get the majority of the popular vote no matter how often you demand we believe you saying you did.

        Totally under his thin thinny thin skin! 🙂

  7. I was at the rally in DC for a short while, but so far back in the crowd I couldn’t hear or see anything. Still, I can say I was there, and it was fun looking at the signs, joining in chants, or just chatting with folks in the crowd or on the Metro.

    Favorite sign: a Ghostbusters logo with a Trump toupee.