Something Big Is Brewing Across The Globe: Women’s March Against Trump Spreads To 58 Countries
The Women’s March on Washington is expecting thousands of protesters to descend on the National Mall on Saturday — the day after Trump’s inauguration — and there are sister marches being planned in all 50 states. But the U.S. is not the only place women are voicing their concerns about what they see as a misogynist administration. The movement has now gone global.
According to several news reports, –at last count– 58 different countries are holding one or more of 616 sister marches against Donald Trump. The undercurrent of them all appears to be the idea that the age of American influence must not be extended to include the misogyny and xenophobia expressed by the president-elect during the campaign.
In London, protesters gathered on the Waterloo Bridge on Friday morning to demonstrate against Trump’s presidency. The bridge was a symbolic choice because it was built by women during World War II.
Thousands are expected to demonstrate on this U.S. Inauguration Day all over England and the world. The Bridges Not Walls movement is a global effort, with signs showing up on landmarks from Paris to Sydney to Nepal.
Tel Aviv, Israel
The Pantsuit Nation Israel rally is to take place outside the US embassy in Tel Aviv on Saturday evening. A second event, organized by Democrats Abroad, will take place in the Mediterranean port city of Jaffa, according to Mindy Goldberg, a fundraiser for an Israeli nonprofit who helped organize the protest.
Goldberg, a nine-year resident of Israel, said: “What was troubling to a lot of people [during the election] was the rise of white supremacy and racism and anti-Semitism. And as Jewish Americans, with [our own] history of discrimination, I was brought up that it is my responsibility to speak out to others who are being discriminated against who don’t have a voice.”
In Lima, Peru, women are standing in solidarity with their Washington sisters and want to show their friends and neighbors in Peru that there were Americans who were upset, even angry, over Trump’s rhetoric and the image of the United States Trump is offering the world.
“We want to show another face of America,” says Nadine Freeman, one of the organizers told Vox.
Yet the organizers of Lima’s march are focusing on the “hatred and vitriol” that marked the 2016 election.
“In this case what is so petrifying and worrisome, for the United States and the world, is that in this presidential election there was a strategy” to open “the Pandora’s box of hatred,” said organizer Leda Perez.
In Nairobi, Kenya, the march aims to demand reproductive rights, women’s land and inheritance rights.
“We will march to end sexual harassment and assault, female genital mutilation, and the trafficking of women and children; and to end discrimination against LGBTQ people, sex workers, disabled women, HIV-positive women, refugee women, women in the informal sector and other marginalized groups,” the organizers said.
“Any issue which affects women globally,” says Kenyan entrepreneur Ritah Mutheu, “affects women everywhere.” But, she says, “We want to also tell the government, to impart a message that anytime a politician decides a policy that violates women or human rights, women will not take it. We will rise up and fight against it.”
Prague, Czech Republic
That the women’s march in Prague will be held in historic Wenceslas Square is no accident: The square has been a “historic space of opposition and peaceful resistance from the student demonstrations against the Nazis to the Velvet Revolution,” says Bonita Rhoads, an organizer. Rhoads is a former professor; she now leads a company providing “scholar-led” tours of Central European capitals. She was born in New York.
“We were inspired by the initiative in DC,” Inge Snip tells me via Skype, but the Tbilisi march will also address the “rights of women in Georgia itself.” Snip, a journalist who speaks perfect English, was born in the Netherlands. She studied in Sweden and New York City, is married to a Georgian, and has lived there for several years.
Women across the globe say their voices have been quieter because “we have had a decent man who respects women in the White House.”
That ends on January 20, when Trump takes office. And on January 21, Thousands of women will take to the streets to make their voices heard, loud and clear.