The Rapidian

Why I'm marching in the Women's March on Washington

A Grand Rapids woman joins hundreds traveling more than 650 miles to march on Washington, D.C. Here's why.
Capitol Building, Washington, D.C.

Capitol Building, Washington, D.C. /Allison Bannister

Underwriting support from:


I am not a sore loser.

I am not a delicate snowflake.

I am not an <insert insulting epithet here>.

I am a human being. 

And, I am marching because I feel inspired. Inspired to lock arms with thousands of my fellow humans who all want the same things. Equality. Safety. Civility. Unity. Acceptance. Understanding. Peace. Did I say love? Because, yes, we need more love for sure. 

I want my voice to be part of the song that carries through the air in our nation’s capital. Not a song of anger (though many are angry), not a song of protest (though many are protesting), not a song of fear (though many are fearful). Our song will be that of affirmation. 

We are here. We won’t be silent. We won’t be silenced. 

When I decided to march, I did so with the knowledge that I would be involved in a history-making moment. That I could, with my eyes, ears, breath, and hands experience solidarity on a level not known for decades in this country. That I would be there for this one blip on the timeline of the universe—and know that I did something that mattered.

Will our marching change the current path? No; I’m not naive enough to believe that. It won’t in the immediate sense, anyway. But, will our example positively influence the next generation of young men and women? I like to think it will. 

That’s the idealist in me talking. 

But, let’s be real for a second. I’m about to get on a charter bus with 50-plus strangers from all around West Michigan. For 10-plus hours. They will smell and they will be loud. I will wonder what I’ve gotten myself into. Someone will annoy me. Someone always does. 

And, we will arrive at the site and it will be utter chaos. Those people I wanted to lock arms with? There will be times when I want to push them away. I will have to dig deep to find serenity, but there will none of that to be found on this day. I will be out of my comfort zone without a trail of breadcrumbs to get back. 

Oh, but right. This is not supposed to be comfortable, is it? Because even though it’s not an invitation to battle, it’s still a fight.

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