Photo by Arthur Nguyen, Instagram @insta.nguyen
Despite the masochistic comments, lack of respect and a very unprofessional Twitter account, Donald Trump was sworn in as the 45th President of the United States Friday. Hundreds of thousands of people chose not to stand idly by and accept the initiation of one of the most powerful people in the world, in fact they did the opposite—they marched.
The Women’s March began with the intention of participants uniting to end violence and promote rights for women, LGBT people, workers, people of color, people with disabilities and immigrants, according to the group’s website.
The idea for the march came the day after the election when Teresa Shook, a retired attorney in Hawaii, posted on Facebook asking her friends to march in Washington. What started as an idea posted to social media ended with over 200,000 people marching in Washington and even more marching around the world.
“I didn’t have a plan or a thought about what would happen,” Shook said in an interview with Reuters. “I just kept saying, I think we should march.”
UNO alumna Cynthia Hernandez was the Nebraska State Coordinator for the Women’s March on Washington, and has played a significant role in organizing marchers from Omaha.
“Recently I think there are a lot of groups that feel marginalized since the election and a lot of people are a bit concerned and feel that certain types of hate have been legitimized,” Hernandez said. “The march is not just inclusive to wom-en; it’s for people who want to send a message to the administration that we’re watching. It’s definitely a positive message. It’s not meant to be anti-Trump, it’s meant to send a positive, uplifting message.”
While the march was never intended as a protest against President Trump, but many of the people who marched did have concerns regarding the president’s actions.
Marches all over the country and the world were held in solidarity with the marchers in D.C., including one in Omaha.
Senior journalism major Erin Hockinson was one of many students to participate in the march.
Hockinson heard about the event via Facebook and decided to march because of her “strong feelings against the bigotry Trump and his campaign promoted.”
“The discrimination of groups of people because of their diversity is against the principles of American democracy,” Hockinson said.
An estimated 12,000 people paraded from 10th Street & Capitol Avenue to the CenturyLink Center. The Omaha event included an afternoon workshop at the CenturyLink Center featuring speakers including former U.S. Rep. Brad Ashford and Jane Kleeb, chair of the Nebraska Democratic Party. The workshop was followed by a rally that began at 6 p.m. and ran until midnight.