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Standing Up 

Last Saturday's women's march made history

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Over 5,000 women, children and men marched in Santa Rosa on Jan. 21. They joined hundreds of thousands at the Women's march in Washington, D.C., and millions at over 600 places around the world.

This resistance is being spearheaded by what the new president calls "nasty women," a term these liberators embrace. Allies include people of color, immigrants, Muslims, people of diverse sexual and gender identities, the disabled and others who object to the rise of sexism, racism, homophobia and other oppressions. Groups such as Black Lives Matter and Planned Parenthood were at the forefront of the marches.

Moveon.org describes them as "the largest set of protests in U.S. history—a gorgeous showing of resilience, strength, and solidarity."

According to the Santa Rosa police report, "The crowds were very peaceful and well-organized. No disruptive incidents were reported." Many families participated, including parents with strollers and infants in their arms and elders.

A dozen Sonoma County elected officials joined. "I left the march inspired and energized," wrote Supervisor Lynda Hopkins. "Women, children and, yes, men, stood up for what I believe in. We can be part of a worldwide awakening of progressivism. This movement wasn't just against Trump. It was for shared values."

Rep. Jared Huffman echoed Barack Obama's words in his final days as president: "Being an American is not about where you're from, or what you look like, what language you speak, how you worship, who you love."

Among the many signs were the following: "No Person Is Illegal"; "Women's Rights Are Human Rights"; "Keep the Immigrants/Deport Trump"; and "We the People Means All of Us"; and "My Pussy Is Not Up for Grabs."

"This is an extraordinary day," observed California senator Kamala Harris at the D.C. march. "We all should be treated equally. Immigrants represent the heart and soul of this country."

It remains to be seen if this was merely a well-organized, highly successful one-day event or the start of a nonviolent mass movement.

For another take on the march, go to Open Mic at Bohemian.com.

Dr. Shepherd Bliss (3sb@comcast.net) is a retired college teacher and has contributed to 24 books and farmed for the last two decades. Open Mic is a weekly feature in the 'Bohemian.' We welcome your contribution. To have your topical essay of 350 words considered for publication, write openmic@bohemian.com.

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