Demonstrators wear printed signs in support of womens rights at the Womens March on Sacramento at the State Capitol on Saturday, Jan. 21, 2016. (Photo by Barbara Harvey)
Demonstrators wear printed signs in support of women’s rights at the Women’s March on Sacramento at the State Capitol on Saturday, Jan. 21, 2016. (Photo by Barbara Harvey)

Sacramento women’s march brings 20,000 to Capitol Mall

Go here for a photo gallery of today’s march.

Tens of thousands of protesters in downtown Sacramento were among the estimated two million people around the world who participated in women’s marches organized to protest President Trump on his first full day in office.

Numerous Sacramento State faculty, students and staff were among the marchers who gathered this morning at Southside Park on T street between 6th and 8th streets.

“I think women want to have their voices heard,” said Jayme Richards, an academic advisor in the College of Business Administration. “We’re not going to stand for bigotry, misogyny, racism. We’re speaking out against the rhetoric legitimized by the election.”

The marchers set out from Southside Park at 10 a.m., walking north before making a right on the Capitol Mall, which by noon had swelled to contain 20,000 people, according to the Sacramento Police Department.

Protesters carried signs advocating for equal pay for women, opposing President Trump’s anti-abortion views and referencing the 2005 videotape that surfaced during the campaign in which he spoke about women in vulgar sexual terms. Many demonstrators wore pink cat-eared hats — referred to as “pussy hats” — or beanies.

Physics professor Laura Lege said that she was motivated to show up to the protest by Trump’s nomination of Betsy DeVos to lead the Department of Education.

“I’m appalled by his education secretary pick and how she wants to gut public education — which used to be the jewel of the world,” Lege said. “Women’s rights isn’t just about being equal. It’s about giving women an equal chance to succeed.”

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Sacramento State junior Robert Landsburg said he was motivated by a desire to show solidarity with groups who felt targeted by President Trump’s rhetoric.

“I’m very fortunate to live in this country and have opportunity, but I feel those aren’t equal to everyone who lives in this country,” Landsburg said. “I want to stand alongside them in their fight for equality — women, LGBT people, racial minorities, religious minorities.”

Senior Jessie Richard shared a similar sentiment.

“I’m marching for all the people who don’t have a say, so I’m trying to make a difference in their lives,” Richard said. “We have four years and we have to stick together. (Women will) have a big role. We’re trying to make a point.”

At noon the crowd listened to remarks by Mayor Darrell Steinberg, who said that the size of the protest made him feel civic pride and who used the opportunity to ask demonstrators to resist Trump administration policies.

“You don’t need to be elected to be special and to make a difference,” Steinberg said. “While we lost one national election, we did not lose our fight. We did not lose our values, our community, nor our ability to actively resist policies that discriminate and divide.”

The Women’s March on Sacramento was one of several similar marches around the country and world, which have attracted over two million people according to news reports.

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