Women’s March Ends in Love Chant

Olivia McNorton: South Alabama Handmaids Resistance Coalition
South Alabama Handmaids Resistance Coalition

The Mobile Women’s March ended in a chanting of the word “love” on Saturday afternoon as men, women, and children pumped their fists in the air. 

On October 17, 2017, millions of Americans traveled to Washington D.C. in the “largest single-day protest in U.S. history”. The protestors held signs and chanted slogans in a negative response towards Donald Trump’s first day as President of the United States. According to Vox, on October 17th, 2020, “more than 400 marches in all 50 states” occurred in retaliation to efforts to have Amy Coney Barrett take the late Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s seat in the Supreme Court. 

The Mobile Women’s March rallied under the slogan of “Stronger Together”, and organizer Mary Hickman commented that planning the controversial event was much simpler than she expected. “We didn’t have any opposition,”  Hickman said, “We’ve had a huge outpouring of support.” The event garnered a variety of spectators, and featured information tables for non-profit organizations such as Planned Parenthood, Rainbow Mobile, Penelope House, and The Poor People’s Campaign. The event also featured an organization known as Our Project 2020, a Mobilian non-profit dedicated to ensuring the 2020 election has as many eligible participating voters as possible, as well as formulating both a network and formal volunteer group to reach across humanitarian organizations in Alabama. 

Before participants marched around Memorial Park, numerous speakers recited poetry or gave speeches relating to the event-organizing committee’s agenda, including fighting against domestic abuse and white supremacy. A man known as Huggy Bear boldly recited “Break the Cycle” a poem based on his experience growing up in a domestic abuse-ridden home. Another man, named Alexis, stood in front of the audience with his adolescent daughter at his side, reciting a poem he wrote the day she was born expressing his love and dedication to her. 

Speaker June Jones echoed a sentiment reverberated throughout the event: “Don’t ever think your vote is not important,” she said, “Without your voice, you cannot get what you want.” Attendees walked around the park holding up signs that boldly proclaimed “March. Vote. Win”, a cry for all American people to exercise their voting privilege this presidential election. The leader of the march, Kalla Etheredge, a woman running for the Mobile City Council District 5 seat, told the group to end the protest with “the reason why we’re here-love.” 

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