Huge crowds gather to demonstrate against Trump

If you think you can bully women back to the 1950s, think again, Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf told a cheering crowd of tens of thousands in front of City Hall, a throng so huge it spilled into nearby streets. “We will push forward for our generation, for our daughters’ generation, for our granddaughters’ generation, and we will not stop until we have it (women’s equality) written in the United States Constitution,” she said. The six Bay Area Women’s March events — “sister marches” to the main one in Washington, D.C. — each demanded attention be paid to the rights of women, minorities, immigrants and the poor, with heaps of performances and singing thrown into the mix. Organizers said the marches weren’t specifically directed at the new president, who took office just a day before, but an undeniably anti-Trump thread wove through every gathering, along with denunciations of pledges by Trump and the new Congress to cut spending on social services. In San Francisco, the marchers ranged from young to old and included a kaleidoscope of groups, from Planned Parenthood to Black Lives Matter and the National Center for Lesbian Rights. By the time speakers began addressing the crowd around City Hall, which was bathed in pink light, tens of thousands of people were crammed shoulder to shoulder, spreading out several blocks from the plaza. Many wore the pink, cat-eared hats adopted as a symbol by marchers to mock Trump’s comments about women’s private parts. “What has brought us together is the reality that all our struggles are the same, and we are stronger together,” Ameena Jandali, content director of the Islamic Networks Group, told the crowd. “I feel like it’s about us standing up for each other and knowing our community is not going to stand idly by,” Rebecca Kidder, 45, of San Francisco said as she held a sign reading Equal Rights for All Genders. In Oakland, demonstrators gathered early in the morning in Madison Park, holding homemade signs with slogans like “Dump Trump” and “Feminist Dad.” There was camaraderie among the strangers who had traveled from across the Bay Area — Antioch, Martinez and Danville — as performers sang, drummed and danced alongside the protesters and their picket signs. Samantha Jenny, a 37-year-old Oakland resident, was with her three young daughters, who wore shirts she made for them that read: “Future CEO,” “Future Diplomat” and “Future Engineer.” Long lines of travelers jammed BART stations across the Bay Area, with the trains packed past capacity and occasionally delayed by crowds. In Walnut Creek, men, women and children from throughout the East Bay gathered at Civic Park to hear singers and speakers including state Sens.

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