More than 100 MIT community members attend Boston Women's March
Over 100 members of the MIT community attended the Women’s March in Boston on Jan. 21, the day following President Trump’s inauguration.
Attendees marched for a variety of causes, including women’s rights, environmental protection, systemic racism and reform, and LGBTQ rights.
The MIT marchers joined an estimated 175,000 people gathered on Boston Common this past Saturday, according to march organizer Zachary Schnall, greatly exceeding the organizers’ original goal of 7,500. The crowd looked like “a sea of pink,” said marcher Adedoyin Olateru-Olabegi ’20.
Marchers interviewed by The Tech reported hearing about the event through social media, word-of-mouth, and emails sent out by the MIT Women’s March Liaisons and the MIT Democrats.
The MIT Liaisons — Alexus Jones ’19, Amanda Kedaigle G, and Ellen DeGennaro G — hosted two poster-making events prior to the march. The attendees later broke into smaller groups and travelled to Boston Common, many by foot. “Most of us ended up walking because the T was too packed,” Kedaigle said in an email to The Tech.
On the Common, speakers including Boston Mayor Martin Walsh, Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey, and Senators Elizabeth Warren and Ed Markey addressed the crowd. “I really wanted to hear Elizabeth Warren speak,” said attendee Tina Tran ’20. “It was incredible to hear her speak in person.”
Warren called for continued action: “We will not be silent! We will not play dead! We will fight for what we believe in!”
Participants then began the march toward Commonwealth Avenue. The size of the crowd slightly delayed the start of the march as people funneled out of the Common.
Marchers were impressed with the size of the event, as well as the numerous powerful, witty, and humorous posters. Olateru-Olabegi reported an atmosphere of not only excitement and anticipation, but also solidarity and purpose. “They did a good job of being intersectional and having people representing different affected communities.”
The Boston march was one of hundreds of sister marches around the world demonstrating solidarity with the main Women’s March on Washington D.C. The Women’s March website, www.womensmarch.com, reports over 5 million total people participating in 673 Women’s Marches worldwide.
The Women’s March organizers launched the new 10 actions/100 days campaign, encouraging civic engagement through actions such as writing letters to representatives. Organization for a Scientists’ March on Washington has also begun online in the wake of the Women’s March.
In terms of social justice on campus, the liaisons cited OurVoice — the new MIT student group for activism — and the “Call for Action” IAP class as other resources for people interested in the future of the movement.
“It’s very important to translate resolve into real tangible action,” Olateru-Olabegi said. “There’s definitely work to be done, but I’m hopeful that we can come together as a community and make our voices heard on behalf of all women everywhere.”