I am woman, hear me roar. This may have been one of the most popular sign slogans for attendees at the Women's March on Washington this Saturday, but it was also quite literal. An estimated 500,000 pink-clad protesters descended on the nation's capital to have their voices heard in the rally for gender equality, and their chants were echoed in sister marches that stretched from Chicago and Los Angeles to France, London, Germany and beyond.
Decked out in pink knit caps, clutching glitter-covered picket signs, and forming human chains to connect friends to sisters, mothers and grandmothers, the tight-knit crowd formed a swarm of pink that upstaged attendance at President (gulp) Donald Trump's own inauguration a mere 24 hours earlier. For a movement that began as a Facebook post in the aftermath of Election Day, the march has since spread, might we say, "bigly." But as those who attended would be quick to point out, the march wasn't just about Trump.
"Most of the congressmen who are helping Trump facilitate all the things that he wants to do have always been there," explained Chloe Sariego, a 21-year-old student at Sarah Lawrence College who rode a bus from New York to D.C. for the march. "So regardless of Trump and his bullshit, I feel that I’m marching for the things that I’ve always been trying to fight for and have always believed in. We are starting off what’s going to be a really long and difficult fight in the right direction."
For many, the march was about changing the very face of feminism—a face that all too often represents the plight of straight, white women only. Cecily Lo, a 21-year-old Tufts University student who traveled from Boston to attend the march, said she saw the march as a chance to diversify what she calls "mainstream" feminism.
"Intersectionality is really important to me in terms of not just representing white, privileged, cis, straight women," Lo continued. "I am making sure that the feminism that we’re promoting covers everybody."
Judging by the diversity of attendees, each with their own expertly crafted sign and symbolic outfit, nearly every person who took to D.C. for the march on Saturday had a different fuel to their fire. Click through the slideshow below to get personal with 11 women who marched on Washington, and read about why they believe the future is female.
Photos by Tatiana Cirisano.
Cecily Lo is a 21-year-old computer science student at Tufts University in Boston.
Why are you marching?
Obviously for women’s rights, but more importantly for women who are sometimes not represented by the mainstream feminist movement. Especially trans women, queer women, and other minority women. Intersectionality is really important to me in terms of not just representing white, privileged, cis, straight women, who already have a voice in the mainstream media in terms of what feminism is. Especially with this presidency, I think those people—the underrepresented—stand to be the most endangered by Trump. That’s why I’m here today, because I can, and I feel like I need to be.
What message do you think the march sends?
That we’re still here fighting, and that there’s a majority of people who didn’t vote for Trump and are trying to not turn our clocks back 300 years. At the same time, for me, personally, I am making sure that the feminism that we’re promoting covers everybody.