On November 11, 2016, I decided that I needed to finally visit Washington DC. Unlike some kids, I never had the pleasure of taking a school field trip or a family vacation to our nation’s capital (those were reserved for theme parks and zoos). Even as an adult, I always knew that I would eventually visit the DC area, but I certainly wasn’t in any sort of rush to do so. However, on November 11, I quickly decided that that was about to change. I swiftly searched for the cheapest flight and hotel that I could. I knew that if I waited even one day longer, the prices would be 2x – 5x more expensive. I grabbed my credit card, plopped in the numbers, and boom, I was headed to the Women’s March on Washington!
According to the official Women’s March on Washington website, “The Women’s March on Washington is a grassroots effort comprised of dozens of independent coordinators at the state level. The effort is helmed by four national co-chairs and a national coordinating committee who are working around the clock to pull it all together.” People had many different reasons and motivations for marching, and all were valid according to the event’s organizers. My motivation was simply to show defiance against the outcome of the presidential election. I also am a big supporter of women’s issues and think that we need to stick together, so any organized effort to do just that is one that has my support.
In the days leading up to January 21, 2017 (the day that the march was to take place), I only gave passing notice to the talks about women making and wearing these things called “pussyhats” at the event. From what I had briefly heard, these hats were to be homemade, pink, knitted hats that had the shape of cat ears in them. These hats were to symbolize a backlash against a recorded comment that Donald Trump made.
I generally despise wearing anything that is pink, homemade or knitted, so I was not on board with wearing a pussyhat. However, when I arrived on January 21, 2017 to the march, I was absolutely astonished by how many people were wearing them! They were literally EVERYWHERE! Everywhere! I quickly learned how viral the pussyhat marketing campaign had become. More than a marketing campaign, this had become a bona fid movement. It was a movement in solidarity against gender and sexual discrimination/abuse/assault. This was living proof of what could happen when a few people with a simple idea start an innocent marking campaign that reaches millions across the world. I was so incredibly honored and proud of have marched side-by-side all of these wonderful people.