Washington: The atmosphere was festive at the Oakland women’s march, where organizers estimated several tens of thousands of people took to the streets Saturday morning.
“Yesterday may have been a dark day for a lot of people, but today is just about the sun coming out,” said Tracie Noriega, an educator from Union City who marched with her daughter. “It’s hope. You need to find some optimism.”
A city with a strong protest culture, the march drew many first time marchers from around the Bay Area. Teresa Medina, a first time protester from Pittsburgh, California, marched with a sorority sister from Sigma Lamda Gamma.
I’m out here just to take a stand against all the hate Trump has been projecting out,” Medina said, adding that Trump’s “disrespect for Mexican immigrants” was very upsetting for her, since her mother is Mexican.“We fought so hard not to be stereotyped,” she said. “To see other people agree with Trump was hurtful.” Another first time protester, Z Wolt of San Leandro, said she was “disgusted” with Trump.
“He’s diminishing everyone. He’s diminishing American values,” she said. But the Ethiopian immigrant said that she was thrilled to take part in the Woman’s March.
“I’m so proud,” she said. “I feel very connected to everyone here, like we are all one.” The rally and ensuing march come the day after Donald Trump was sworn in as the 45th president of the United States.
The inauguration drew hundreds of thousands of attendees on Friday in spite of wet weather, and today’s drier forecast may make the travel to Washington easier for today’s marchers.
A number of high-profile speakers are expected to address those at the rally, including Gloria Steinem, Planned Parenthood’s president Cecile Roberts, and director Michael Moore.
The demonstration in Washington is one of a series of similar women’s marches that are scheduled in major cities across the country and around the world.
Washington, D.C., police are expected to be out in full force, as they were on Friday when some protests against Trump turned violent, leading to the arrest of more than 200 people.