The Women’s March Experience

Lily Botelho

Panorama of the crowd
Photo credit: Jacob Botelho
Counter Protesters in front of the Supreme Court
Photo credit: Jacob Botelho

On October 2nd, 2021, thousands of women from all walks of life gathered in the nation’s capital for the annual Women’s March. Young children marched alongside the elderly; people pushed others in wheelchairs or hobbled along on canes and walkers. Everyone who wanted to march, who had something they wanted to stand up for, found a way to make it to the capital.

Every person in that protest had their own story of why they were there. One woman I met talked about her upbringing in a religious cult where she had protested women’s rights, especially their right to an abortion. She now feels it is her duty to fight for what she truly believes is right. An older woman stood beside us, walking with her daughter and grandchildren, telling us about how she had fought for these same rights in her youth, and she would continue to defend them until her death. 

Ten thousand women gathered in D.C., but on the same day over 600 other marches took place across the country; the most notable of those marches were the ones taking place in Texas. Texas women were protesting directly in opposition to Governor Abbott’s abortion ban. This ban fueled much of the protest behind all of the nation’s marches, but it held the most weight in the state where it was actually enforced.

Women's March Posters and Crowd
Photo credit: Jacob Botelho

Walking among this crowd of like-minded women and their supporters, spanning in front of me and behind me for as far as the eye can see, brought forth a sense of power and community I had never felt before. Every single person in that march was bound together by their collective belief in the equality of women and the protection of reproductive rights. People proudly brandished their homemade signs, sang the chants as loud as they could, and made their voices heard to anyone who would listen. If you are a supporter of women’s rights I could not encourage you more to find time to go to a local women’s march one year. The empowerment and unity you feel standing amidst that sea of protesters is unmatched.