We Are America

Taken 11th February, 2017. CC-BY-NC 4.0

This is democracy. Whether you want to admit it or not. Whether you agree or not. This is democracy. Eighty thousand people marching. They’re not marching for any one subject. They, and we, are marching because we feel our various lives are imperiled, one way or another. Agree or not, this is democracy. This is us having our voices seen and heard. You can mock us, you can jeer and laugh, but this is power. Hiding behind internet anonymity, people love to make snide comments about their morals, and snowflakes, and SJW’s, but we are out there, putting ourselves in the line, and making our voices heard. This is democracy.

We are Social Justice Warriors. We fight for others, we fight for ones who can fight alongside us, we fight for ones who cannot, for whatever reason, or even will not. We fight for your rights, whether you realize it or not. That you might feel threatened by this, that only speaks for you, and your motivations, not for us. That you feel this somehow infringes on your liberties and rights, because we fight and march for equality and justice, speaks to your broken moral code, your ethics of coercion and fear, not our cause nor our resolve.

We are snowflakes. We are unique, special, and each and every one of us a single part of a bigger storm. You might like to make jokes about us being fragile and melting easily, but you forget the power of snow. Silent and peacefully it falls, until it has covered the landscape. It can cover a mountaintop for years in silence, just watching. And when the right sound comes? It is an avalanche. Avalanches are destructive, terrifying, and beautiful. And we will be that avalanche to fight for civil rights.

I march because we have a staunchly anti-LGBTQ cabinet and administration. We have a congress that has made it a goal to squash advances in our healthcare rights, access to public services, and access to public places. I march because not even a week in, the new “Justice Department” has squashed a ruling meant to protect transgender rights in schools. I march because I feel threatened.

I march because there are many people who feel fear that their parents may be sent home, with or without them. I march for people who are denied refugee status and forced to return to war torn homes where they will almost certainly be killed. I march for women who are scared for their reproductive rights. It didn’t stop at abortion. Republicans are going after access to birth control now. I march for doctors who feel that changes to law will hinder their ability to do work. Who else marched with us?

I saw white people. Cisgender men and women. Trans men and women. Nonbinary people. I saw photographers, doctors, students, mothers and fathers. I saw Jewish, Christian, Islamic, and Atheist people marching alongside each other. I saw black, white, hispanic, middle eastern, and asians all marching alongside each other. I saw daughters and children. I saw everyone out there, to argue and stand against hate, against hateful policy. I saw America. I saw the America I was born and raised to believe I lived in, and one that I believe can and will rise again. I saw an America that I had been raised to love and that I will fight for, for the rest of my life, if that is what it takes.

Like it or not, we are America. We have spent years being tread upon, and we have had enough. And we are talking and we are being seen and heard. We will not go quietly into the night. We are America.

Originally published via Facebook on 2017–02–11