2nd annual Women's March brings thousands to Capitol steps
Thousands gathered around the Michigan Capitol on Sunday to commemorate the one-year anniversary of the Women's March and to continue fighting for women’s rights.
Several women gave speeches about their own experiences and what it means to give “power to the polls” on the steps of the Capitol.
For Sarah Moberly, who also attended the Women's March in Lansing last year, giving “power to the polls” and advocating for women’s rights means a lot more than just showing up to a march.
“I think that people feel really helpless, so when we get out and do stuff like this, you know, do more,” she said. “We don’t just go to the march, you know, we volunteer and do other things, and call senators, and call congressmen and show up at their doors. That’s what I’ve been doing this year.”
Moberly held up a sign of Martin Luther King Jr. and President Donald Trump, an illustration called "My Brother's Keeper" by Haitian-American artist Watson Mere.
“I’m part of the resistance and I’m an activist,” she said. “I’m here to support everything that’s good.”
Penny Gardner also decided to make a reappearance at the Women’s March this year. She said she attended the march in Washington D.C. last year and wanted to come back and march again because she thinks the way women are treated is not improving.
“It’s going to keep going like that until we do this (the Women’s March), and keep doing it and keep doing it,” she said.
Gardner, who is a 76-year-old Lansing resident, said she has been an advocate for a long time. She wore a sash from when she marched for women’s rights back in 1989, along with several other buttons she has collected from previous marches, including a button with the Equal Rights Amendment on it.
“I’ve been involved in it for a long time, and was the chair of a campaign in Maryland,” she said.
The speakers at the march represented all women, including women of color, transgender women, Muslim women and women who are survivors of sexual assault and harassment.
Phoebe Hopps, founder of Women’s March Michigan who has “mobilized tens of thousands of participants to attend the Women’s March on Washington and the DTW Airport Protest,” according to the Women’s March Michigan website, urged the crowd to show up to the polls and to fill ballots with women’s names.
Each speaker brought up a different issue and perspective.
Emily Durbin, the Michigan chapter leader for Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, spoke about gun violence in the United States. She said people who are willing to stand up to the National Rifle Association need to be elected.
Nicole Denson, who is a sexual assault survivor, said survivors across the nation are remarkable.
“I want us to take our power to the polls so there won’t be another (Harvey) Weinstein, there will not be another R. Kelly and there will never be another Trump,” she said to the crowd.