marchondc (marchondc) wrote,
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marchondc

The March for Women's Lives is over, but we've only just begun…

Like everyone working on the March, my day started much too early on Sunday, April 25. By the time we got down to the Mall, everyone was tired. But as I stood there watching thousands of people walk down 14th street with signs and t-shirts and buttons, my energy was renewed. Most of the rest of the day was a blur of happy faces and passionate speeches.

One moment sticks out in my mind though. I was walking from one end of the Mall to the other, when a woman stopped me to ask where a specific tent was. I pointed her in the right direction, and we chatted for a minute. She told me that the thing that struck her most about the day was the makeup of the crowd. I agreed. There were people of every race, gender, and age. That wasn't surprising, but it was comforting. It's easy to feel isolated when you're fighting for something you believe in. But Sunday showed me - and hopefully everyone else - that we're not alone. If one in ten pro-choice Americans were at the March, that's over 10 million Americans who believe like I do in a woman's fundamental right to choice and privacy. As I stood talking to this woman that I'm sure I'll never see again, it hit me that we're all in this together. To coin a phrase, "the people united will never be defeated."

Please share your stories and experiences from the March. I hope it touched everyone's lives as much as it did mine. If you weren't able to make it to the March, click here to see our photo album. To add your story, click on the comment link below.

Jen Moseley
NARAL Pro-Choice America
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I am blogging about my experiences at the March for Women's Lives over at http://msfrizzle.blogspot.com I have so much to say, it may take me a few days to tell the whole story. I hope you'll stop by & read!

The moment

Anonymous

April 27 2004, 19:29:04 UTC 13 years ago

There was one moment that will stay with me forever. It was sometime after the march as we were all on the mall. 3 women were standing on a makeshift ministage witha bullhorn microphone talking about ru-486. One girl started telling her story. She had an anger in her voice. She began to tell stories of her using ru-486 numerous times, how she hated it, it gave her crabs, she had to pretend to be married to her boyfriend in order to get it paid for. I was emabarassed for her. The woman screaming about getting crabs. I was about to walk away until I noticed something. It was hard to see because she was tryng so hard to hide it but I saw it for a brief second.

Her hands were shaking.

That was it. It hit me. This woman IS embarassed about these stories. She is mortified and scared to be sharing this with strangers. But she truly and deeply felt the cause, making ru-486 available to women, was more important than her pride. I was amazed. This was one incredible woman. Not one in a million. No.

One OF a million.

and counting....

Ed Hill
West Hartford CT
Like everyone else, there is a march moment that will stay with me forever as well. It all stems from this misconception that I have had for a while that the only people who are really passionate about choice are the 20 and 30-something crowd. At the end of the march, exhausted, I plopped down onto the curb for a break. As I was sitting there watching other people finish the march route, I saw the cutest little old couple; a man and his wife. They had to be in their 70's. He was holding her arm lovingly and they were just barely creeping along, loaded down with pro-choice buttons. That's when it really hit me that this is about all women, not just those most likely to get pregnant. And I thought, she's probably been fighting so much longer than I have. And if I'm this tired, think how she must feel right now. I'm only 24; this battle is just beginning for me. What an inspiration to have people like that woman to look up to. And I sure hope someday I'll find a great guy like she did to hold my hand through this fight.

Sally Breite
St. Peters, Missouri
I debated for what seemed like forever on whether or not to go to the march, mostly for financial reasons. It wasn't until I was awarded a scholarship that I committed to go, but now that I've gone I realize it would have been worth every penny to pay for it myself.

But as inspiring and amazing as the march itself was, I think for me the best part was the reception I attended afterword, where I met Representative Raul Grijalva (who represents my district here in Tucson) and Dolores Huerte, not to mention all of the dedicated activists who advance our cause right here in Tucson, many belonging to groups I'd never heard of before. Hopefully now that we all know about each other, we will be even more active and more effective!
There were a few powerful moments for me at the march. One of them was seeing the three women in one family, each of a generation, there together protesting together. It showed that this is not something that only affects one generation, it spans us all, living, dead, or not born yet.

I don't plan on ever getting a girl pregnant unless it's a wanted pregnancy, and I can almost even say that I am anti-abortion while I am very pro-choice. What really got me during the march was walking by the protesters with the giant signs. I was stunned when I saw them, very upset. It took me a moment or two to get back my composure and remember that while they had a point defending life, I was standing up for the choice that you make for an abortion, with full knowledge of the circumstances but knowing that it is the right decision. What I got out of all this is that it really is a very controvercial issue, and it means so much to us all that over a million people would come out and stand up for something so emotional as abortion.

I really want to thank everybody that came to the march. It means so much to me to understand that we all can feel so passionate about the lives of ourselves and others to stand up for the many who have to go through everything from the decision process to the procedure, and live with whatever decision is made.

Michael
Union College, Schenectady NY
I was at the March on Sunday, and two days later, last night, I found out my mother had an abotion in high school. I thought I was marching for the belief that every woman could decide what was best for her and her children. Now I realize I was marching for myself and my siblings, that we could be reared in a stable, loving, supportive enviroment. Pro-choice is pro-family.
When friends and coworkers asked what it was like bieng at the March, my answer was simply, awesome!! It was worth every penny I spent and the 5+ hour drive from Long Island, NY. My vote for the best shirt was a big muscle-bound guy wearing the "This is what a feminist looks like" tee shirt - what a powerful statement about everyone's commitment to women's lives-not just women. My vote for one the best signs (there were so many and people were VERY creative) was, "The only Bush I trust is my own" -synthetic pubic hair included!! As I walked through the crowd on the National Mall and saw all the different groups of people, med students for choice, republicans for choice, catholics for choice, league of women voters, youth for choice, etc. I felt truly inspired. There were moments marching down Pennsylvia Ave that I was overcome by raw emotion and welled up with tears. The crowd's solidarity and chants gave me goosebumps. I hope we will never have to march again, but I know I'll be there without question. Never Go Back!!
I want to thank the great group from Syracuse with the
SU signs and the USA flags-- your water and
ice were a bonus to this senior cit. Harriet Syracuse Callahan

March

Anonymous

April 29 2004, 20:48:49 UTC 13 years ago

For the first time in more than 35 years of activism, I flew to DC (from Boston) rather than take a chartered bus. I missed the companionship of the bus, but I recovered a lot sooner.

The March was incredibly impressive--I was truly heartened by the make up of the cord and was especially grateful for the number of spirited, young women. I was also impressed by the organization of the speakers. Unfortunately, I have been to too many demonstrations since George W. took the presidency and have suffered through repetitive and overly long speeches at the anti-war marches. Last Sunday each speaker seemed to talk for 5 or 10 minutes--leaving us wanting more. Each speaker also spoke on a different aspect of why we were gathered there. Nearly everyone gave us ideas on the next steps we could take as we returned to our communities.

We did a great job. Thanks to all who put in the work to make it happen.

Theresa Tobin
Boston MA
I was not able to attend the March for Women's Lives last Sunday. But soon
after, I was sent a photo that inspired me. I then sent it to several of my friends who were as moved as I was. It was taken by a women from Austin, TX who was attending the March with her mother. She photographed my sister-in-law, Lisa, from Seattle, WA. Lisa was carrying a sign which I designed for her from a small photograph she keeps on her desk. It is a photograph of her mother marching in the 1992 Women's March for Choice. Sadly, Lisa's mom died 18 months ago. Lisa called me from the March and told me how many people had stopped her to comment on the sign and its moving and powerful message which says,

"No Going Back ... I Promised My Mother".

Seeing the photo gave me the desire to compile Mother/Daughter images and the
stories behind them from The March for Women's Lives. If you have any photos/stories
you might like to share please email me at arose@west.net.
Of course no material you send will be used in a public way without your
permission, so please be sure to include your contact information.
Feel free to forward this message: we believe there are thousands of women (men, too) who attended with their mothers, fathers, daughters, sons, grandparents, etc., and we'd like to tell their stories.

Amy Schneider
arose@west.net/

Lisa M. Stone
Executive Director
Northwest Women's Law Center
Advancing Legal Rights for Women
lstone@nwwlc.org/www.nwwlc.org


I've always come from a political family. When I was 8 months old I was marching on my mothers back in rallies and protests. Always, havae been into politics, in my blood, born libreal die libreal type of girl. I was excited when my hebrew school was going to the march, extatic when I cam back. The Gen-X kids are having their own and we need to pick up where they left off- on the steps of Washington. It's my job to ensure I will always be safe, and that my future children will be safe and grow up in a world where her body is her own, not government property. Each indivisual person must know that they are NOT a number in the census polls that they are a living, breathing, human being with a mind that can think and a vocie that can scream.

The march was a life changing experience for me and my peers. Thanks for oppertunity to make our voices heard.

<3,
Samantha Blum

March Press

Anonymous

May 5 2004, 05:57:13 UTC 13 years ago

The picture on the cover of Monday's Washington Post was worth all of the effort of so many people to come to the March. It was taken from
the top of the Washington Monument and showed the entire Mall covered with people, with a pink hue to the crowd. Everyone who has seen this photo has been shocked by the size of the crowd, even veteran Pro- Choice Marchers. It was awesome. I hope that our Executive Branch reads the Washington Post or at least looks at the pictures.

Anonymous

May 12 2004, 07:52:25 UTC 13 years ago

I wanted to attend the march in DC from the minute I heard it was going to happen, but in the end I couldn't afford it on my meager student budget. A smaller march was being planned in conjunction with the one in DC here in my college town of San Luis Obispo, CA, but on the day of the march I ended up catching a monster of a flu, and had to stay home. I watched the entire DC march on CSPAN that day, and was moved to tears on multiple occasions. I was awed at the amount of people who attended, the diversity of the faces in the crowd, the positivity. I was moved to tears by Whoopi, Ani, all of the fabulous men and women who spoke. I was proud of the politicians who put their names to this infinitely important cause, and was so impressed with the work and dedication so many volunteers and planners put into the march. It touched me at my deepest point. Even though I was not there in person, my spirit flew across the country to stand in solidarity with the other one million marchers. The march made history, and I am inspired to blaze on in this fight against the Bush administration and its allies in telling them, "never again," as Whoopi called out so repetitiously. I am even more dedicated to the cause of the global war against women. Thank you to all the people who attended, and lets keep this positive momentum!