Has the Women's March changed anything? All you have to do is look around to see that is absolutely has.
Many people still ask why we march, what is the point, what is it really accomplishing? When the 116th Congress was sworn in on January 3rd, 2019 it contained a record 124 women, from our first Muslim and Native American Congresswomen to the youngest Congresswoman ever voted into office, we are seeing our representation advance. #MeToo and #TimesUp movements cast a spotlight on the stories that survivors of sexual assault have lived with and led to the empowerment of women in a wide spectrum of industries. Documentaries like The Hunting Ground and Surviving R. Kelly are bringing to light the severely flawed system that repeatedly re-victimizes survivors who have the courage to report their attackers. In Texas, 17 black women won judicial seats one district in Texas, including the county's first openly LGBTQ African-American judge.
So ask me again why the Women's March matters because the list will go on and on. It has bridged generations of girls and women that are still fighting for protections some don't know we still need like protection against rapists who demand parental rights, protection from child marriage which is still legal in the United States, protection from required "cooling off period" when reporting work-place sexual harassment, and more. There is still much work to be done and the next generation is ready to continue to take the work on because we march.
Women raising their voices in unison to say #Enough is why we march. We march for our rights, for our daughter's rights, and to continue to raise awareness of the conditions that women suffer in throughout the world daily. Of course it matters to us, even if you think it doesn't matter to you.
I couldn't be prouder of the work that has been done by so many brave activists and ordinary citizens, their courage is inspiriational. But we've also seen some set backs. Title IX continues to erode under the current Secretary of Education, anti-choice activists continue to gain ground in some states nearly eliminating reproductive options for women, and at roughly 24% of the Congress, women continue to be under-represented in spite of the progress we've made.
So this January 19th we will march again. And next year we will march again. Let's not forget that it's been less than 100 years since the 19th Amendment was ratified and just over 50 years since the Voting Rights Acts made it possible for people of color, but especially women of color, to be able to vote freely and safely. So let's keep marching forward, together into a better future for all.