On January 21, 2017, Fran and I will be marching alongside the thousands of people unifying for the Women's March on Washington. The women led, women initiated march will be a bold statement to this country that we are standing up against sexism, homophobia, racism, and more. We want to share what inspired us to go to Washington and what message we hope to voice.
We march for women. Women have fought for the rights to their own bodies since the 1970’s. The fight still continues today, and we want to add to the movement of women taking ownership of their lives, bodies, and families. We consider ourselves to be activists, and feel it is important to have our voices heard, to be present, and to stand up for our rights as women.
We march for the LGBTQ community. I have been an out lesbian in my community since being kicked out of my home at 17 for being gay. We want to be a voice for the people that feel marginalized, unsafe, or isolated, and remind them that they are not alone. That we will never stop fighting. As co-founders of TomboyX, we put the highest value on representing and giving voice to the community that has nurtured us most of our lives.
We march for immigrants. I am a first generation Cuban-American. I am the daughter of working class Cuban born parents. I grew up surrounded by Cubans, Dominicans, Puerto Ricans, Jews, African Americans, Asians, Middle Easterners and more in New York City. I love and crave diversity. Most people that come to the U.S., like my own parents, carry hope for a better life. The desire to work hard and build a home for their families is at the forefront of their minds. I am one of those dreamers. I was born of hope. From the foundation my parents laid down for me, I set about in the world to make my own way with the idea that I could do something that would make a positive difference.
Fran and I are alarmed by the direction that our country has taken. So finally, we march for this country. We believe in the progressive ideology that change for the common good can be achieved. That people living in rural communities who avoid the expense of a doctor at the expense of their health will have access to the healthcare they need. That immigrants who fear a violation of their rights will build a life with their family in a country that values them. For the mothers of black men who are incarcerated at staggering rates and killed on the streets because of their skin color. That victims of sexual assault who are too often told to get over it and move on will be met with empathy and support.
This is the message we’re sending to Washington by being part of the March. That change for the better is possible. That the world we imagine can one day become a reality when the brothers and sisters of communities across this country show strength in numbers and unify behind this message. We are America. We have a voice and we will not let our rights be trampled upon. We will stand shoulder to shoulder with our fists in the air and say enough is enough. We are humans, we are powerful, and we will be heard.