I Have More Reasons Than I Can Express.

On Saturday, January 21, 2017, I jumped in my car and drove to Rapid City, South Dakota, to be a part of the Women’s March. This was important to me for more reasons than I can express, but I will try to touch on some of them here.

I marched for my one-year-old daughter. May she grow up in an America that wants to see women succeed. A society that has affordable healthcare, birth control, reproductive rights, paid maternity leave, and equal pay for women. A country that recognizes that people who are LGBTQ+ are equal under the rights provided us by our constitution. All are created equal.

I marched for my three-year-old son. May he get to be a part of that same country. May he be an ally for women and may he, in turn, benefit from that.

May both of my children be caring, empathetic individuals who see injustice in the world and know how to show love for all people, regardless of their background.

I marched for my students. I want them to know that everything I have taught them in class is true. My students are dumbfounded when we discuss slavery. They ask why. They are confused when we talk about the suffragist movement and women fighting for the right to vote. They don’t get it when we discuss the Civil Rights era, and see photographs of people using different water fountains, bathrooms, restaurants, and swimming pools. It doesn’t make any sense to them, because they know the world is better than that. They know that Malala Yousefzai was shot in Pakistan trying to fight for rights of girls to get an education. This also makes no sense to them. Why are there places in the world where girls don’t have the right to an education? I assure them it makes no sense to me either. A couple years ago while watching the news with one of my classes, the anchor started to talk about the pay gap between men and women who were doing the same job. One of my students, a girl, came running up to me to repeat the statistic. She was baffled and I knew I had no good answer to provide her. I teach them they are equal and they can do anything they want to do, but when they hear that may not be true, they simply cannot understand.

Since I started teaching in 2010, I have had a sign on my door saying “Everyone is welcome here, everyone belongs.” I believe this to be true, and this is why I marched.

Our country has grown to be better because of the people who stood up. People who peacefully marched. That is what happened on the day of the Women’s March. Over five million women and men around the world, in cities large, small, and tiny, peacefully came together to march for equality. We want to live in a world where people are treated equally. This is why I marched.

I Want an America for All.

I believe ALL people are equal and that is what makes America great.
The current political rhetoric weakens us at home, as well as abroad.  It takes people from every creed and color to pull together to solve our problems in a peaceful manner. I believe in an America for all people.

The largest political demonstration in the history of the United States

I marched on January 21st, 2017 because while I accept the results of the 2016 Presidential election, Donald Trump did not win my vote or the popular vote of the nation. I marched with a neighbor, our 2 dogs, and found among the marchers a mother I work for who is currently pregnant and a small business owner, one of my young students with her mother and younger sister, and several co-workers, friends and colleagues. It was entirely peaceful and respectful of not only our Nebraska Union grounds but also the State Capitol. I marched because I object to President Trump’s intent to repeal the Affordable Care Act and the Senate actions already taken to repeal its provisions. I marched for the rights of women to obtain safe and affordable reproductive care. I marched for the children with disabilities in a community program I direct who could lose their access to health care benefits. Most of all, I marched because it is my constitutional right to assemble and freely express myself peacefully and respectfully with my fellow Americans. I marched to be part of the largest political demonstration in the history of the United States. I thank the leaders and women who have gone before me that have afforded me that right. We the People.