Not for Me But for My Friends.

I endured a grueling bus trip to be in DC on Saturday. I traveled from Iowa with friends. Not for me but for my friends.

I March for my black women friends who are worried that their husbands and sons will be killed in a traffic stop.

I marched for my immigrant friends so they would feel safe in the country they’ve adopted because their own country was not a healthy place to live.

I Marched for my Muslim friends, who deserve the right to choose their religion in a country taken from Native Americans by people escaping religious persecution.

I marched for my Great grandmother who lost her farm when her husband died, she had to sell grain in the name of her 5 year old son. For my great aunt who shared the story of her mother getting to vote. These stories of string women make up my family, may they watch over me and be proud.

For inequality in the workplace and everyday sexism we are so used to we barely notice. For a salary correction that awards equal work for equal pay.

Women are as capable of making decisions as men. Stop legislating our bodies. You cannot stop abortion, you can stop safe abortion. The Hyde amendment has kept your federal funds safe since 1976 when I was 10. Stop wasting your legislative efforts in non issues and spend time doing good.

I am a Christian and Absolutely Believe Jesus Would Have Been Marching with Us

First, women’s rights. I came of age before Roe v. Wade and I never want to go back. Also for rights of other vulnerable populations, minority, immigrants, Muslim, poor, LBGTQ, disabled..Old and young..Any one seen as OTHER..We have a moral obligation to treat all OTHERS with respect and love. I am a Christian and absolutely believe Jesus would have been marching with us..These are the very folks he cared for, I grieve for what many “so-called Christians” do in Jesus’ name. It is truly evil. I am so angry at our “so called leaders.” I will not go quietly.  I am a nurse practitioner and have fought the mainstream white male medical establishment for the right to practice my trade decades..I am now broadening the fight..

We Carved Out a Space for Women to Have Value

I marched for paid family leave.  How about instead of constantly proposing bills to make it harder for women to have an abortion we propose bills that make it financially easier for a mother that chose life to bond with her newborn baby?  I sometimes wonder if politicians are even aware that most moms today do work, this isn’t the 1950s.  I marched for paid family leave because I can’t believe this is 2017 and we don’t have it and when I bring it up at work people look at me like I’m nuts.  “Oh, that would take an act of Congress.”  Well then let’s get moving on it!  What are we waiting for?

 I marched to speak out against sexism and racism so that they don’t slowly become socially acceptable.  I marched in support of women who have been sexually abused and to put a stop to rape culture.

 I marched because I believe climate change is real and want to give my children a planet that’s still habitable.

 I marched because one of my best friends is Muslim and worries that she could be sent to an internment camp just like the Japanese were.

 Most of all, I marched for equality.  Not just equality for women but equality for all people that have also been made to feel like they were second class – poor people; people of color; people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender; people with disabilities; people of all different religions or without religion.  The Women’s March loves all and accepts all and I felt love and equality on that beautiful January day like I’ve never felt before.  For once the world was ours, we could complain, we could protest, we could wave rainbow flags down the street in Loup City, we could shout from Alliance to Omaha that we deserve and demand more than the low standards that the world is willing to offer us.   We carved out a space for women to have value and for everyone to be equal.  Equality hurts no one – and that is why I marched.

I Marched Because I Want Our Voices to Be Heard!

I marched because I learned the importance of being an advocate in 1976 when I started my first job as a counselor at Planned Parenthood of Lincoln.  I saw the need for women to have affordable health care, birth control counseling, and pregnancy option counseling without being judged.  I marched because I fear that funding for Planned Parenthood will continue to be reduced and women will not have an option for free or affordable health care, that a woman’s rights to control reproduction, and that their right to have a safe and legal abortion will all be taken away.

In 1986, I started working as an Independent Living Advisor at the League of Human Dignity.  This involved advocating for the rights of students with disabilities to see that schools were applying the Individual with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).  So many individuals with disabilities are still facing huge barriers to live independent lives without being judged by society based on the fact that they have a disability.  I am a woman with a disability and felt like my voice needed to be heard at the Women’s March.

I marched because the LGBTQ community faces barriers in regulations of employment discrimination, bias in hiring, promotion, job assignment, termination, and compensation, as well as harassment on the basis of one’s sexual orientation.  I marched because I fear their rights with marriage equality will be stripped.

I marched to fight for the rights of woman to receive equal pay.   Women still are not receiving equal pay for equal work, let alone equal pay for work of equal value. This disparity not only affects women’s spending power, it penalizes their retirement security by creating gaps in Social Security and pensions.

I marched because of race discrimination.  Martin Luther King is one of my heroes and I marched for him.  I marched for Margaret Sanger, Rosa Parks, Susan B. Anthony and every person who has fought for the rights of all the causes that I believe in.

I marched because I want our voices to be heard!

I Marched for All Women

I marched for all women. Of all races, color, religion, backgrounds, and sexuality. We are all equal. So are men. And our children. I participated in the Women’s March because of my concerns on President Trump and his administration. But I’m hopeful and I support democracy. At the end of the day, we are all on the same team.

I support a woman’s right to her own body.

I support Science, those brilliant minds collecting data on climate change and studying weather patterning, who are trying to preserve this great world and all the creatures for future generations.

I support the hard-working, underpaid journalists that spend every waking hour to report the news, unbiased, to us. They spend hours away from their families, holidays and weekends for work, they dig and go further than most, their actions have integrity and merit. We need journalists. They are often not liked and berated. But the good ones, we need to support. Local and national.

I marched for love. I support the men who love women. I support the women who love women, and the men who love men.

I marched for my son. I will spend the rest of my life bringing up my son to be an informed, educated gentleman who treats everyone with respect.

I am concerned about reproductive rights and health care.

I participated in the march in my hometown of Loup City, NE. Like many women, I felt compelled to simply take any action to demonstrate the frustration and concern I’ve been feeling lately. Some of the frustration stemmed from anger over comments and/or behavior towards women the President had demonstrated in his past or during the campaign. Some of it was specifically tied to concerns about reproductive rights and health care. And some also extended beyond specifically women’s issues to equality across the board, for LGBT citizens, immigrants, and other minority groups.

My Mission is to Stand Up and Show Up

Like many people, I’ve gotten so burnt out and frustrated with politics and the election cycle. I don’t trust ANY particular politician (or individual, for that matter) to fully represent me and my beliefs; the only person who can do that is myself. As such, I’ve made it my mission to stand up and show up for the things I believe in. I marched because I believe that there are so many incredible, talented women who have earned more than what they’ve been given; I marched because our new President doesn’t even come close to meeting the moral, ethical, or intellectual standards that I would hold anyone to; I marched because I am responsible for and should be able to make decisions about my own body; I marched because when, one day, my daughters or nieces ask me where I was that day, I needed to be able to proudly answer that I stood up for myself and for the future of women’s rights and equality in this country.