There was strong LGBT representation at the third annual Women’s March LA on Saturday, January 19. An estimated 200,000 people marched from Pershing Square to City Hall, with rallies held at both locations.
Transgender actress Laverne Cox addressed the sea of people at City Hall as “ladies, gentleman and my gender non-binary peeps.”
“We come today peacefully, but we also come to fight,” Cox said. “The achieving of basic human rights, dignity, justice or equity for one group of people does not mean that something is being taken from another group.”
“Women Will Not be Silenced”
In a fiery speech, Center CEO Lorri L. Jean said of the midterm elections: “In state after state we threw the bums out and sent record numbers of women to Congress. Young women, old women, diverse women, queer women, strong women.”
Still, women still only comprise fill only 23 percent of the seats in Congress and new female members must deal with “way too many people who do not respect us. “
Jean described Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell as “a man who uses his corrupt power to censure his brave women colleagues.”
“We are here today to say that women will not be silenced,” Jean said to cheers. “We are here today to say that sexual predators have no place on the Supreme Court or any court. We are here to warn elected leaders everywhere that we are not afraid to speak truth to power and we will hold you accountable.”
Newly-elected U.S. Congresswoman Katie Hill, the bisexual Democrat who unseated Republican incumbent Steve Knight in November, was greeted like a rock star at the Pershing Square kickoff rally.
“I’m here to tell you that the work that you did last year got the most historic, most diverse, most women ever elected to Congress,” she said. “The activism has just started, get back to work, it’s time for 2020 to watch out for us because we’re coming again.”
Making her first speech since her husband, Gavin Newsom, was sworn in as governor of California, Siebel Newsom spoke of “the public health crisis of toxic masculinity in our country.”
“Isn’t it high time that we raise all of our boys to understand that power does not come from oppression, dominance and control over other human beings?” she asked. “True strength comes from empathy, compassion and relationships with other human beings.”
The march began at Pershing Square where crowds, including a contingent from the Center, arrived carrying signs, banners, flags, and wearing costumes. The Center’s group marched with signs which stated: “Without Community There is no Liberation” in English and Spanish.