Despite dreary weather conditions and a last minute change of direction, the Women’s March in Tallahassee was a huge success. People of all ages, races and even genders came out to advocate for women’s rights everywhere. The movement served as a message to newly-inaugurated President Donald Trump, his administration, Rick Scott, the Floridian legislature and essentially the world. Their message? That in the face of a controlling government, women will refuse to give up their rights towards their bodies, ultimately leading to equality.
The march began at Railroad Square where thousands of people gathered by the neon buildings wearing ponchos and carrying freshly painted signs. The movement then left on their way towards FAMU’s recreation center. It was deemed appropriate to march there in replacement of the Capital building due to the fact that FAMU is regarded as one of the United States’ Historic Black Universities. After over an hour of walking, the first bit of people reached the final location and headed inside where a lively crowd chanted unifying phrases and listened to speeches about women’s rights. A large group of people who were unable to fit inside the recreation center decided to turn around and march to the Capital anyway, without the protection of closed streets and police escorts.
In the wake of the prospect of the government defunding Planned Parenthood, a health care provider and educator that specializes in reproductive health necessities such as birth control, abortions, cancer screenings and testing for sexually-transmitted diseases, many women marched to protest their disapproval.
Two young women who attended the event, Sara Allison and Isabella Whaley, explained to Her Campus why they attended and what they marched for.
“I march for women’s rights. I don’t think that our rights should be decided by anyone but ourselves. And I think it’s a really good thing to be proud of,” Sarah told Her Campus.
“And I just think it’s very important to come out and be active and let your voice be heard. It’s a really beautiful thing to see all these people together standing for the same cause and it’s comforting, it makes you feel a lot better knowing there’s so many people out there with you looking to support you and help you. That’s why I’m here,” Isabella told us.
“And there are so many members of my family that completely relied on Planned Parenthood for their health care, so that’s why I’m here, I’d rather not see that defunded for only one thing they do,” Sarah said.
And thus, the citizens of Tallahassee came together to engage the principles initiated by Florida Planned Parenthood Alliance of maintaining a welcoming and diverse populace, administering nonviolence even in the presence of protesters and ensuring their blatant proclamation that women’s rights are undeniably human rights to the government. With wet heads and hoarse voices, they did just that along with thousands of other women around the world who stood up for the gender equality that they believe in.