“You may write me down in history with your bitter, twisted lies. You may trod me in the very dirt. But still, like dust, I’ll rise.” Maya Angelou.
Yesterday, on the 21st January 2017, the world feared for the future. A lot of these people were our Mothers. They were our Grandmothers. They were our Sisters. They were our Daughters. They were WOMEN. Women who were in fear for what is owed to them, something they deserve. Their human rights. This shouldn’t be compromised or abused.
I started my day with the prospect of going to work. Upon arriving at Charlton Athletic Football Club I was told my shift had been cancelled. Bummer right. All I wanted was a nice easy shift to save me from poverty. But no, the Gods had decided that wasn’t the plan for today. And I couldn’t be happier about that decision. Taking the 11:47 train home from Charlton to Lewisham I was flooded with messages from my friend, Hannah. She expressed her interest in the #WomensMarch that was taking place throughout the day. In essence it started out with a walk across London and finishing up at Trafalgar Square for a series of speeches and music at the rally. Due to my travels, we were unable to make the march but we decided to join in at the rally and show our support as this is a topic we were both passionate about. Whilst I knew there was a March event taking place I had no idea that it was happening on that day. I really do need to organise my calendar more.
So off we went, headed towards the rally, our spirits remained positive and our message was one of LOVE. Walking from tube to tube we were on a mission; a mission that shouldn’t have to be taking place in the first place. The sun was shining and the sky was blue; it was a beautiful day. Despite the bitter cold, we like many others made our way to the crowds at Trafalgar Square. There was a variety of people there ranging from mothers with their children, to men with their signposts. We were all here fighting for one thing: EQUALITY. Hunched together, as a mass, A UNITY, you could feel the energy and warmth each person was giving off. The vibrations were there and thriving making our voices heard. It was a delicate moment we all shared together. The numerous inspirational speeches touched upon Trumps inauguration and viewpoints, misogyny, the ongoing refugee crisis and the fundamental lack of support that is offered to them from the government, equal pay, support for the LGBTQ+ community, domestic violence and much, much more. Being there in the moment you could see the passion in people’s eyes, the drive in their voices and the courage in their hearts. This movement is not one to be mocked or easily pushed aside. It will FIGHT and it will SURVIVE. One of my favourite quotes from the day was “I brought my megaphone because I use it to get my voice heard. I think every woman needs a megaphone” Every woman deserves the right to be listened to just like every man deserves the same right.
“You may shoot me with your words, You may cut me with your eyes, You may kill me with your hatefulness, But still, like air, I’ll rise.” Maya Angelou.
America, we are with you. Here you can see the crowd of all races joining in with Labbi Siffre’s 1990’s song ‘So Strong’. Being a member of the crowd I felt uplifted and happy knowing that there are people out there willing to step up and have our voices heard. I knew that I, like all the people who surrounded me, had the power to make a difference. It was an empowering moment for all the women out there and the fact that this was happening in 70 countries across 7 continents on the same day was truly amazing. Making the world a better place has to come from inside you, whoever you are out there, speak out and stand up for inequality in any sense of the matter. Know that you aren’t and you never will be alone. Injustice needs to be rectified and that all starts today. Decades of struggles and fights fought by our ancestors and predecessors cannot and will not be detriment-ed or reversed. Fight for what is RIGHT and join the many organisations that help achieve this goal every day. It’s common sense.
I marched because of my mother, because of my grandmother, because of my sisters and my aunties and all the other amazing women that have affected me and made an impact on my life whether they be my teachers, my friends or my role models.
I support because I believe neither man nor woman is the greater sex. Everyone deserves the same shot at life and shouldn’t be ridiculed because of their sexuality, gender, race, disability or religion.
Whatever your reason YOU have the power to achieve it all. Make sure you live it and make 2017 a happier year for ALL.
Women’s rights are human rights – they most certainly DO matter.