It’s reported that four million people worldwide joined the Women’s March to draw attention to issues important to all – among them, health care, equality, freedom of speech and the press and quality education. According to organizers more than 50,000 marched in Austin. Families pushed babies in strollers alongside men and women walking with the assistance of canes.
There were college students and children, seniors and millennials. They were African Americans, Caucasians, Latinos, Asians and mixed-race. They were gay and straight, Catholic, Muslim, Protestant, Evangelical, agnostic and atheist. They were Democrat and Republican.
They exhibited tolerance of each other, the heat and the congestion. And those who had to wait to get started, because there were so many more of them than anticipated, showed each other kindness. A thirtyish woman offered water to a couple with a fussy two-year-old. A six-year-old boy fanned with his poster an older woman in front of him.
They carried signs, mostly homemade, and as clever, creative and diverse as the crowd. Some expressed it literally, but all implied the overriding message: “We are Not Going Away.” The marchers chanted, most prominently “This is what Democracy looks like.”
The marches are a call to action for all citizens. To quote a phrase often attributed to Thomas Jefferson, “Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty.” Whether you are pleased with a Trump presidency, take a “wait and see” stance, are among those who fear he is an autocrat or remain somewhere in between, vigilance is essential to protecting our rights.
Part of that vigilance should include tracking and resisting any actions taken by Congress and the Trump administration to erode Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and the affordable health coverage for all. Make no mistake; there should be no divide between Baby Boomers and the younger generations regarding this. If seniors lose these benefits, their children will suffer financially, physically and emotionally by having to fill in the gap. The follow-up to these marches is to press your representatives to address your concerns. Starting today, flood Congress with your calls at (202) 225-3121.
Sandra W. Reed is an attorney with Katten & Benson, an Elder Law firm in Fort Worth, Texas. She lives and practices in beautiful Somervell County, near Chalk Mountain. She can be contacted by phone at (254)797-0211 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.