The second annual Women’s March took place Saturday January 20 and marked the one year anniversary of President Trump’s inauguration. Held in a conservative and mostly republican part of Fresno, district six, protesters hoped to empower women and encourage them to participate in the 2018 midterm elections.
Organizers showed their support for women, but also stood in solidarity with other marginalized groups and discussed ways they can support women’s rights through elected officials.
“We are looking at a city counsel that women in general, when elected, are there to get things done and not in it for the notoriety as unfortunately so many men are,” said Cathy Brass a member of the National Women’s Political Caucus of Fresno and president of the local chapter. “We need more women because we represent over 50% of the population. We need to at least come close to that in all of our elected and appointed positions.”
During last year’s march women protested Trump’s inauguration along with showing support for human rights issues. A year later, Trump continued to be a topic of discussion. “This is the anniversary of this inauguration and you will hear a lot of conversation here about the damage he’s doing to the country and to women,” Brass said.
Ricardo Franco, who it currently running for congress in California’s 22nd congressional district, called the event a “a solidarity movement,” with many protesters holding signs in support of the #MeToo movement, LGBTQ community and DACA recipients.
“We are here not so people just understand the causes but so they understand the next steps to make progressive meaningful change, a lot of that starts at the ballot box,” Franco said
While downtown Fresno hosts most of Fresno’s protests, James Martinez, a member of Senator Kamala Harris’ staff, explained it’s important for Fresno to highlight issues in areas that typically are not home to protests.
“I think we need to start making changes in terms of this part of the city, highlighting issues to broaden people’s horizons and get them informed about issues that affect them as well,” he said.
Martinez said his presence at the rally is to represent Senator Harris and her support for women’s rights. “It’s important that staff represent her office and let people know we stand with them and we have a senator that truly cares about issues that are important to women, such as access to affordable health care and access to contraception.”
With the Trump administration, Martinez explained now more than ever it has become important for individuals to attend rallies and fight for issues pertaining to women. “They are under a constant barrage of attacks from the President, from the cabinet and members of congress,” Martinez said. “It’s a multiple front battle and it’s unfortunate that we still be discussing issues in this day and age.”
Continue below for more photos from the #WomensMarch2018. All photos by Jarrett M. Ramones.