I’m not sure what Greg Henderson found so “amusing” about the idea of a multi-partisan Women’s March to inspire Mohave County women to get and stay involved politically, but what I found amusing about his Jan. 28 Letter to the Editor was his suggestion that women could simply “[aid] and [merge] with the established celebratory parades already in place.”
Amusing and ironic because Greg’s suggestion is exactly what women have been asked to do for centuries – to “help” the men to succeed, and to “merge” with the established patriarchal rules about a woman’s proper place in society, the work place, and politics – which is precisely why the Women’s March is so “vitally important” for this ongoing journey of women struggling to find their own voice, their own power.
Why should women be granted the right to vote when their husbands are capable of voting for them? Why should a woman go to college when her rightful place is in the home taking care of her husband, the house, and the children? Why should a woman work toward a career when it’s her husband’s job to work and provide for the family? Why should women get involved in politics when men are clearly so much more capable of doing the job?
Thank goodness for the women who have lived and marched before my time.
I’m sorry, Greg, but women are no longer willing to simply “aid and merge” with the established gender-oppressive systems. We have our own voice, our own experience, our own passions both personally and politically, and we refuse to be silent for even one more day. So we congregate in groups both large and small to march in solidarity with the struggle that only other women can truly understand.
And on a more relevant level, the Women’s March isn’t about celebrating the nation’s independence, or the honoring of veterans who have served this country, or the remembrance of service members who have given their lives fighting to protect and defend this country. So why should our voice be subverted by “aiding and merging with” these solidarity parades? Honestly, what is so wrong with wanting our own solidarity celebration?
But the Women’s March is much more than just a solidarity march. On a more powerful level, it’s about making it very clear to the Washington power brokers that women all across this country are standing up collectively to make their political voice heard because the personal is very much political.
And for every woman (regardless of party affiliation) who is courageous enough to stand up, to show up, to wear a “Resist!” T-shirt, to carry a “Time’s Up!” picket sign, or shout through a megaphone that “abortion is murder,” there are hundreds of other women in painful silence who are inspired and motivated to let their voice be heard, too. There is such an amazing power to transform a community when silenced women hear other women’s powerful voices speaking a painful truth.
We have women here in Mohave County who feel powerless in their lives every single day, lost in the drug addiction that suffocates their inner beauty. There are women who are stuck in abusive relationships, hopeless, with no idea how to open up the door to the dark truth that silences their joy. And when women shout out their “Me TOO!” chants, their voices call out for other women to rise up and fight for their voice, too …no matter what is silencing their lives.
And not only do women get inspired to rise up within their personal truth, we teach our sisters, our daughters, and our nieces how to be powerful women when they watch the women around them making T-shirts and signs, hugging and crying in solidarity and marching side-by-side in a beautiful unified diversity of civic engagement and political activism.
And, yes, the Women’s March can and does do just that because the unified diversity is the only true solution to the divisive agenda. So I absolutely agree with Greg that we need to “stop the foolish divisiveness and all join together to make our country stronger, better and a peaceful, tolerant nation.” And I believe that we do that within our own lives, our families, our friendships, and the community in which we all live together, for better or worse.
Which is why I wrote the “amusing opinion” in the first place, because I genuinely believe that we can create a multi-partisan Women’s March that will inspire and motivate Mohave County women of all party affiliations to get personally and politically involved in the transformation of our community into that “stronger, more tolerant community” vision that Greg and I both have in common.
All interested politically diverse women who would like to help plan the 2019 Mohave County Women’s March, please contact me at KingmanWomensMarch@yahoo.com.