The Privilege of Not Marching
Like millions of other women around the world, I marched last Saturday in the Women's March. Gals on the Venus staff came over to make signs and we attended the sister march in Austin as a unified front. I am tearing up just thinking about how inspiring it was to see all ages, races, genders, and backgrounds marching together to fight for something we shouldn't have to be fighting for. 50,000 people showed up for women this weekend in Austin, but I'd like to talk about those who didn't.
First of all, I would like to acknowledge the valid reasons that many did not attend. This piece is not directed towards you. If you were physically unable to march, know that we marched for you and your voice is heard. If you felt the march was exclusionary towards you, I understand and I am sorry that there remains to be a gap in representation between white women and women of color. As a white woman I do my best to acknowledge my privilege and I know that women of color were marching long before us. I know that a horrifyingly large number of white women voted for our new frog president and I am appalled. I am doing what I can to talk to my peers to combat the racism that exists within the feminist movement.
It is a privilege to not feel the need to march. There are a few articles circulating claiming that women are equal and we don't need to march anymore. Some arguments are even going so far as to say that we should be grateful as women that we have men to take care of us, and we shouldn't challenge that. So this is directed to the women I have seen saying they are "over" feminism. Congratulations. You have been lucky enough in your life to not feel what millions of women are feeling right now. But your experiences do not mean that other women's experiences are invalid. Just because you are privileged enough to not have personally experienced inequality doesn't mean it doesn't exist.
I would need another hand to count the number of women I personally know that have been sexually assaulted. I would need probably 10 more hands to count the number of women I know that take some form of birth control. I know women who have had miscarriages. I know women who have had abortions. I march for them. I march for the women of color in this country that have been marching long before us and still don't get their voices heard. If you don't feel the need to march or think marches are pointless, consider yourself one of the lucky ones who isn't in a fight for their life. But remember-- just because you aren't seeing the affects of this presidency doesn't mean millions of women aren't as well.