They came in twos and threes and fours. People of different genders, sexual orientations, ethnicities, and races congregated at the Alberta Legislature on January 21st, protesting equal rights for women at the Women’s March.
Amongst colourful signs and waving limbs, a crowd of civilians banded together in one united voice, screaming “Enough is enough!” Not even a month into 2017, and people are still fighting for equal rights.
The Women’s March was more than a small-scale protest — it was a movement. What started in Washington spread like a necessary virus to countless cities across the world, everyone waving their angry fists at the same leader.
In an act of solidarity that will undoubtedly spark a wave of more to follow, it was not only refreshing but empowering to see people standing up to advocate for issues whose resolutions are long overdue. Is there something about large groups of civilians that gets our hearts racing and our passions flowing? Is it the countless bodies, pressed against each other, fists clenched and cheeks flushed, yelling about something that deserves to be yelled about?
The photos that emerged from marches across the globe were enough to stir emotions in anyone who saw them. Looking at the numerous bodies in the speckled public squares and streets across the world is inspiring. Yet despite the sense of community, you wonder what the effectiveness of such rallies are: does ranting about equal rights and feminism really change anyone’s opinion of it? Does the action of rallying really qualify as meaningful attempts at change? Is it worth standing outside in the freezing cold to listen to the same phrases being shouted, watching the same signs as they are hoisted to the sky?
One of the keys to success is repetition. I would agree that the only way for the many voices to be heard is to keep yelling, to keep protesting, and to keep connecting. Power is always felt in numbers. If you don’t yell about it, who will?
One way to implement change is by talking (and complaining) about it. Now the question remains: will the issues surrounding feminism, human rights, abortion, sexuality, gender and the like ever be addressed? Or is this just one march of many more to come?