Estimates I have seen of turnouts to the various marches around the globe reached 4.7 million people who showed up for the protest. In Portland, it was a crowd of over ten thousand people. Some estimates were as high as fifteen or twenty thousand as people moved along a mile-long stretch of Congress Street. We were surrounded by a sea of incisive signs calling out policies, attitudes and behaviors that are anti-woman and anti-humanity . . .
Love women, don’t grab them. Ask for consent. Nasty women keep fighting. Respect existence or expect resistance. Speak truth to power. Hate has no home here. The time is always right to do right. Golden shower tapes $10. Not my czar! No Putin Puppet. Boycott Dicks. Nasty woman. Hands off Planned Parenthood. We go high. Love/Revolt. Make America Think again. As for my girls? I’ll raise them to think they breathe fire. Legitimize empathy the children are watching. Resist Portland. We honor the legacy of the movement before us.
One woman proudly displayed a sign that read “Pussy grabs back.” I saw her photo in several different media, as apparently many people loved her presence! She proudly and happily posed for me as well, huge smile on her face. She and the many pink pussyhats at the march were incredibly striking, a classic empowerment phenomena. Taking derogatory comments that were made, and embracing them in force (and often with humor!) making them a symbol of power. This was evident at the marches throughout the world.
While some people will disagree with me on this point, I think it is very healthy for women to embrace the debasing statements that are made about their bodies in protest. And, in general, to break out of the over-socialized “good girl” role where silence and “putting up with” are encouraged. In that spirit, I am posting a collage of photos I took of the signs proudly carried in Portland.
Listening to songs on the Women, March! on Spotify, I continue to be struck with the power of P!nk’s song U + Ur Hand. She writes about a situation were she (or someone) was assaulted and turns the experience into a powerful lyrical rebuttal. It seems relevant to the political climate as we discuss embracing adversity and turning it into empowerment.
That’s when D*ckhead put his hands on me. I am not here for your entertainment. You don’t really want to mess with me tonight. I was fine before you walked in. Stop spilling your drinks on me. You know who you are. High-fiving and talking sh*t. But you’re going home alone, aren’t you? It’s just you and your hand tonight.
(Oh, my gosh. Did she really say that?) Yes, yes she did. And should! Telling it like it is is so important.
A friend sent me a note on the way to the march that read “March on, Woman! . . . my heart is with you in the march and being with your family. I so appreciated your blog post and am about to turn on the playlist Bad Mom style. To that end, keep your t*ts up and have a great empowering march!” Definitely! You, too, my friend! 🙂