Bay Area Women’s Marches Draw Over 100,000

San Jose City Council member Donald Rocha marches with women protesters in San Jose.

Today’s Women’s Marches in the San Francisco Bay Area drew an estimated 100,000 people, most to major events in Oakland, San Francisco, and San Jose. “Celebrated” on January 20, the one-year anniversary of the inauguration of President Donald Trump, both in support of women’s rights and in protest to the president’s regressive policies and obscene racist and sexist statements. See photos of the nationwide event.

In San Jose, a crowd of 20,000 jammed into Arena Green Park, gradually filling up after the first marchers from City Hall began arriving at around 11:30 am. Marchers held signs with feminist messages, many explicitly anti-Trump. “Not My Shithole President” declared one sign. “Nasty Women Vote” said another. A “Call to Action Alley” was set up in the northern half of the park, as rows of tents under which over 40 non-profit community organizations promoted themselves.

This year’s Women’s March saw endless homemade signs carrying the messages of the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements in protest of sexual harassment of women and pay and opportunity discrimination against women in the workplace. The message from an hours-long procession of public speakers was that now is the time to develop and recruit female candidates for public office and take political power directly by voting. “Register to vote, and re-register!” urged one speaker. The next elections are June 5, 2018.

Supporters of Green Party candidate for Lieutenant Governor Gayle McLaughlin and the Recall Judge Persky campaign were both out in force at the event. Most local politicians attended the event and posted photos on social media. No elected officials spoke on stage, unlike last year when the Mayor, City Council members, and County Supervisors all gave moving speeches in defiance of the new president’s anti-immigrant threats. See you next year.