Hundreds participate in Women’s Marches


Via Wyoming News Exchange

Several hundred people took to the streets of Wyoming communities on Saturday for the third annual “Women’s March.” 

Participants in Cheyenne, Jackson and Gillette marched to express their opposition to and support for a variety of issues, primarily opposition to the administration of President Donald Trump.

In Cheyenne, hundreds linked arms and walked to the Wyoming Supreme Court, while in Jackson, about 100 marched to the Jackson Town Square and in Gillette, about 50 walked along the South Douglas Highway in the city’s first organized march.

Cheyenne

By the Wyoming Tribune Eagle

The voices of hundreds of protesters rang across the street near the Wyoming Supreme Court on Saturday: “Women’s rights are human rights!”

The call-and-response came after the attendees of the Wyoming Women’s March walked from outside the Cheyenne Depot Plaza to the Supreme Court, holding signs, linking arms and shouting chants.

This was the third year of the march, which initially came in response to protest the messages of President Donald Trump’s campaign and administration.

People of all ages held signs in favor of reproductive rights, women’s issues, LGBTQ rights and rights for indigenous peoples.

March attendee Kenya Haynes said she decided to attend her third march because it made her “feel a little less helpless” during the Trump administration.

“I’m just really distraught by the atrocities that are being done with my tax dollars,” she said.

Haynes said she kept coming back to march each year because of the sense of community she felt with the people who attended.

“There’s a tremendous sense of community and sense of welcoming,” she said. “You don’t see that many places.”

Jackson

By the Jackson Hole Daily

Everyone was welcome during the third installment of the Jackson Hole Women’s March on Saturday. And those marching made that abundantly clear.

Signs and statements displayed opposition to a variety of political views. Yet dialogue was welcomed and encouraged by the nearly 100 women, children and men in attendance.

“When we all come together, we can remind each other that we make a difference, and that we’re stronger together,” said Kirsten Goldman Taerea, one of the event’s organizers.

Kicking off the march from the Home Ranch lot to the southwest entrance of Town Square, Taerea reminded the assembled what they’ve helped accomplish since the first Women’s March in 2017.

“We’ve made a difference,” she said. “We had a high voter turnout across the country for a midterm election. We’ve elected a more female and more diverse Congress than we’ve ever seen before.”

A member of JH Activate, Taerea said she and fellow organizers didn’t want to associate the Jackson protest with the national Women’s March in New York that has recently been criticized for anti-Semitism. They wanted women of all backgrounds, religions and political viewpoints to unite.

“We want to include everybody that we can in this,” Taerea said. “We want to be inclusive, and if there are people who don’t feel included in this movement, then we need to readjust the movement. If the national leadership isn’t willing to do that, then we’ll do it in a grassroots way.”

The action backed up the talk, as many marchers carrying anti-Trump signs — such as ones that stated “Not my President” and “Tweet me with respect” — said they welcomed a Trump supporter who joined them, one who carried an American Flag over her left shoulder and a Trump/Pence sign in her right hand. Katherine Rueckert figured that she would be in the minority Saturday. But that didn’t stop her from joining a group of people who thought differently and welcomed her all the same.

Gillette

By the Gillette News Record

As part of the national Women’s March, about 50 people made their way down South Douglas Highway and gathered at Lasting Legacy Park on Saturday, carrying signs with slogans like “You’re so vain you probably think this march is about you” and “men of quality don’t fear equality.”

“We are here to celebrate women because we wanted to find a positive way to empower our community,” said the Rev. AJ Bush, who helped organize the march.

Although the Women’s March has become an annual event in cities around the world since 2017, when millions gathered the day after President Donald Trump’s inauguration to advocate for human rights, this is the first year Gillette residents organized the Northeast Wyoming Sister March.

“We wanted to do something local rather than going to Cheyenne,” said Christine Engel, a march organizer, referring to marchers who gathered Saturday at Depot Plaza and walked to the Wyoming Capitol. “For me, this is about advocating for policies that help women and involving youth in working toward change because they are our future.”

Participants met at Lasting Legacy Park at noon and marched to Second Street. They then turned around and walked to Starbucks before returning to the park at about 1 p.m.

“In a conservative town, I sometimes felt the need to keep my ideas to myself, but there is nothing shameful about standing up for what you believe,” said Grace Mcdonald in a speech at the end of the march. She later added that, “My generation is the future, and I want us and those who come after us to live in a better world.”