A sea of women and men carrying colorful signs and wearing bright pink woven beanies populated Fifth Avenue Saturday at the New York’s Women’s March.
The event, which was forecast to attract just 60,000, is said to have drawn hundreds of thousands of participants. They were all on hand to protest the presidency of Donald Trump, who was sworn in on Friday. The main purpose of the rally was to call for equal rights for women.
Although the march, which began at One Dag Hammarskjold Plaza at the United Nations, was not as big as its Washington D.C. counterpart, it drew a number of celebrities including Yoko Ono, Cynthia Nixon, Rosie Perez, Whoopi Goldberg and Helen Mirren, among others.
The feeling in the crowd, which made its way to Trump Tower on 5th Avenue and 57th street, was upbeat, yet determined. Protesters carried signs that ranged from the elaborate: “I’m not setting my clock back 300 years” and “Keep your tiny hands off my rights,” to the humorous and terse, “Geez” and “No.”
Protesters relayed different messages — some to speak out against Trump, others to reinforce their support for Hillary Clinton. Overall, however, many attendees were there to reinforce women’s rights and the rights of minorities and LGBT people.
Protesters chanted various slogans, including: “My body, my choice,” “Impeach Trump,” “They go low, we go high,” and “No place for hate,” as they strode past empty shops on Fifth Avenue.
“The decision to march was visceral,” said Laura Feinstein, a New York-based journalist, who would later join her sister and mother at the march. “The day after the election we all called each other just distraught, and said ‘We have to do something, anything’ Every part of Trump’s campaign was anathema to the way I was raised and the world I grew up in. We don’t think we can change the world by coming out, but we also couldn’t just stay home. We had to do something, get out in the streets and be with other women — especially women we love. This feels like an important moment for women in America and we’re so proud to be here.”
The former head of communications of Glamour, Kimberly Bernhardt, brought her daughter, Lila Schumann, 9, who explained why she came to the march with her mother as she carried a sign colored in crayons which read: “Lipstick and high heels do not matter, rights do.”
“To have equal rights for women and men because if men have more rights than women, it’s not fair,” the youngster said, continuing, “Trump is not fair to women,” before shifting issues. “I think love is love, too.”