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Trump Vowed To Make America Great Again But Women Marched To Remind You They Never Stopped Being Great

23/01/2017 17:14

Lady Liberty may wear a gold crown, but on a winter's day in Washington DC, it's a pink knitted hat that tells you all you need to know about freedom and strength. Thousands of them bob and dance through the city streets, beacons of hope and warmth, uniting thousands of people from right across the United States. This is the Women's March, and they've got a message for you. They're going to make damn sure you listen.

America votes men into power. It's a bald fact. Every single one of its 45 Presidents has been male. Despite Hillary Clinton, Shirley Chisholm, Margaret Chase Smith - women who fought for change - the status quo remains as fixed and unyielding as the rocky faces of Mount Rushmore.

Edna Nichols from Missouri pulls her suitcase along Pennsylvania Avenue, not far from the White House, wrapped up warm against the chill wind. She's just flown in from St Louis on a plane packed with marchers. "When I approached the gate and saw how many women were there it was delightful, just the energy that was around us, there were women with banners taking pictures and wearing pink hats, it was thrilling". Laura Parkes came from Boston, where "probably 80% of the plane was women, the flight attendant actually acknowledged it and sang a song to the women going to the march as we took off".

A deeply personal motivation brought them here. They recently got married, but right now they don't feel the security that should bring. Laura shakes her head. "It's a scary thought to think what might happen. It certainly could be reversed". She fears for the future of the country she loves. "The ugliness, the vulgarness during the election, we just can't sit around and say this is okay, that this is normal for us going forward as Americans".

The rolling rumble of cheers and whistles echoes up and down the National Mall, in the shadow of a Capitol Hill still dressed in star-spangled banners left over from the day before. Placards are everywhere, 'we are the noisy majority', 'she is defiant', 'trust women'. Some marchers are here for equal rights, some for awareness, many simply to show Donald Trump that he doesn't have their support. But the Women's March wasn't - in the end - all about one man. It was about mothers, sisters, daughters - and yes - husbands, brothers and sons too, whole families turning out to prove that they care about the future, and they want it to be the best it can be.

It's important to remember that hope takes many forms. On Inauguration Day I spoke to crowds of beaming women, old and young, black and white. They were buoyant and excited, filled with faith in the future, and Donald Trump gave it to them. "I like the fact that he supports women", one bright young student told me, "even though people think he doesn't. He has changed his ways. He speaks his mind, that's why I like him".

Donald Trump's message of change was a powerful one, in a time where whole communities describe feeling abandoned, poor, insecure, ignored. He spoke to those people, and reassured them they hadn't been forgotten. He's vowed to make America great again. But today, and every day, its women want you to remember this simple fact. They never stopped being great.

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