Santa Ana’s Women’s March


Gabriela Gonzalez, Reporter

*Trigger Warning: this article makes mention of sexual assault*

The morning of January 19th, people of all types came together to march for one similar goal: women’s rights and equality. Many women, men, teens, and kids were marching to raise awareness for their beliefs on women’s rights. Holding posters relating to facts and quotes for example “my body, my choice.” Through the crowd, you could hear the little ones say “ this is what democracy looks like,” and the rest responded in unity. Many say it’s a time to get engage and really show what democracy truly is.

In the Women’s March website where their agenda for planning the marches nationwide is found, they state, “social movements are the only bulwark against the rising tide of authoritarianism, misogyny, white nationalism, racism, anti-Semitism, homophobia, transphobia, xenophobia, Islamophobia, ableism, classism, and ageism.” It further explains how intersectionality is key to move society forward.

Loni Gardette, the member of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), said in our interview regarding as to why she was in attendance in the Santa Ana Women’s March, “This is a women’s movement about women’s rights. I´ll stop when we get equal pay for equal work.” When asked if the current government reflects those values she responded with ¨Excuse me, hell no! They don’t express my values, they express division, hate, definitely inequality, (and) they represent the worst of the worst.¨ This could be a reference to the degrading comments made by Donald Trump. For example, during the campaigns in April of 2015, he referred to Hillary Clinton and said this about her, “If Hillary can’t satisfy her husband, what makes her think she can satisfy America?”

“I feel like there are a lot of injustices happening to women,” said Arlen Olibo, an Anaheim High School alumni. Olibo continued with, “especially the fact that we are not recognizing rape as rape. So many judges in our system are letting rapists just walk around and not take responsibility for their actions and if our government doesn’t reflect that we are taking this crime seriously then they’re definitely not reflecting women’s rights values.” An example is a recent case with Virginia judge T.J Hauler who ruled to free Logan Osborn (19) of jail time after he pleaded guilty of sexually assaulting a minor. “Now is the time to rise up and fight all the injustices, which is why I am here today,” Olibo stated.

Trustee of the Anaheim Elementary School Board, Juan Alvarez, participated in the march “To support women and their rights to choose whatever they want to do with their bodies. That’s first and foremost.” Referring to his wife he stated that, “She should be empowered to feel like she can express her opinions and views and not have to be told what to do by men.” Furthermore, he said that he doesn’t have any right to enslave her because of her gender but that “she’s free to do whatever she wants and I feel like that is a right women should have. They are equal as human beings and we shouldn’t put restrictions on them just because they are a different gender.” He noted that the current government, specifically referring to the last presidential election, doesn’t reflect women’s rights and support women. “What we are doing here is trying to engage youth and the community to make sure we don’t let that continue to happen and that we get people out there to vote and change things back to how we’d like them to be seen in a way that a progressive movement towards making sure humans are being treated equally in all facets of our communities.” .
Joanne Fawley, the trustee at Fullerton Joint High School District, told us she takes the Ruth Bader Ginsburg approach when it comes to equality, “none of us are equal unless all of us are equal.” Fawley emphasizes the importance of women and younger generations to be very politically active. “The president went out of his way from his very first speech to make it clear that he had no intention of representing all the people as we would expect of the president of the United States. In fact, he represents a very narrow size of the U.S and that’s why we are pushing back.” She further stated that her seniors at Cypress High School are very aware and have concerns for the future. She ended with, “When women take action things change, that’s a historic fact.”