18 January 2017

Why I'm marching

On the day that Donald Trump is inaugurated as the 45th president of the United States of America, thousands (possibly millions) of people will be marching in support of women's rights.

While many people do not understand, and perhaps never will fully understand, what drove so many people to vote for a man who is an out and proud misogynist, a self proclaimed bigot, and a failed businessman, the fact remains that he is going to be running America as of 20 January 2017.

I don't think anybody is perfect. I don't think any politician is perfect either. I understand that the world is not black and white. I know that Obama wasn't perfect and much as it pains me to say it, I even accept that Trudeau isn't perfect.

I know that people voted in the failed businessman because they want a better economy. I know that they voted in a bigot because he made all our own failings seem like somebody else's fault. I get that they voted in a self confessed abuser of women and card carrying misogynist because well, it's just women right.

I know that Australia's political system also allows bigotry to flourish and in it's current incarnation, that the small minded have more power than the open minded.

And this is why I am marching.

I am marching because bleeding heart lefties are not just key board warriors.  Bleeding heart lefties like myself actually believe the things we say and write about - that is not a truth specific to the right.

I am marching because women have such warped views of their own possibilities that 53% of white women voted for Trump.

I am marching because as a white woman, I need my brothers and sister of all colours, creed, abilities and sexualities to understand that I stand with them not against them.

I am marching because while this feverish demonisation of 'others' might have peaked in America, it is alive and well in Australia.

I am marching because I physically want to be counted as somebody who believes in human rights for all. Every single one of us. Even the ones whose politics, ethics and values I find hard to comprehend.

I am marching because one women a week is being killed in Australia and three women per day in America and we still have time to be xenophobic when the greatest threat to our way of life are mostly men we know.

I am marching because people still blame women for being raped and not men for raping them.

I am marching because women still earn less than men.

I am marching because women who speak out against abuse are threatened with rape and violent death by men who are photographed holding their daughters in their arms.

I am marching because we condemn Trump for his wall idea and the people he surrounds himself with that think the Berlin Wall was a good idea, and yet we see no harm in offshore detention where women are raped, men are killed and minds are destroyed all in our name.

I am marching because I feel despair when my own friends think comments on their appearance are more important than the work they do in the places they are employed.

I am marching because I have two daughters and I know that the greatest threat to them is not the Middle East or Muslims or any other bullshit like that. It is the communities that they live in where people are polishing their hate into stones that they throw, teaching their bigotry, supporting economies that favour the wealthy and blaming women for the actions of men.

I am marching because I want my gay friends, my queer friends, my girlfriends, my muslim friends, my hindi friends, my Indigenous friends - all my bloody friends actually - to live without prejudice.

I am marching because I do believe change is only possible when you do something, not just talk about it.

I am marching in solidarity with those that can not march because they live in fear.

I am marching for those that don't even know they should be marching.

I am marching because if I do not, and you do not, and they do not - who will?


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