The View From Here – The Women’s March on Washington was a symbolic victory but more than symbolism is needed neepresent more than like-minded

Tom Henihan
It is hard to imagine anything positive arising from four years of a Trump administration.

However, only 24 hours after Trump taking the oath as president, an estimated 500,000 people participated in The Women’s March on Washington, outnumbering the attendance at his inauguration by more than two to one.

That it was necessary for these women to march is not a positive outcome in itself: that they felt compelled to show solidarity in such great numbers and mobilized in resistance to the things Trump represents is a definate triumph.

Among those who marched, many are women in their sixties and seventies who were active in the Civil Rights movement, women who once again had to march in defense of the rights they fought for back in the 1960s, rights that protected people from victimization due to their gender, race and sexual orientation.

In a variety of different terms, these women reiterated that they don’t want to return to that kind of America “again.”

Considering Trump’s demeaning comments about women on Access Hollywood and that he promoted and profited from the archaic, objectifying spectacle of beauty contests, there is poetic justice in a half million women drastically outnumbering the paltry attendance at his inauguration and in essence overshadowing what was to be his great moment.

That the Washington march was attended by so many women and at least a million more participated in similar protests across the US and around the world, this illustrates that Trump, as a man and as a president, is completely anathema to a considerable amount of women.

Because they have been the object of his vulgarity and hatred, women recognize that Trump’s offensive bluster is not a public persona, nor is it an augmented facet of just one part of his personality, but more alarmingly it is all there is of the man.

Trump has asserted himself as an abhorrent American archetype, a spoiled child who has replaced the moral equilibrium of right and wrong with the amoral absolutism of winners and losers.

In Trump’s dark, unenlightened world, Americans are being told that the interests of one group or individual is by necessity directly opposed to the interests of others and therefore all must be vigilant and assume an adversarial posture.

Being completely amoral and self-consumed, Trump is in his element in this dog-eat- dog environment and he seems determined to cast America in that image so he can continue to prevail.

Cooperation is intrinsically social yet it need not exclude self-interest. Americans who care about human rights, women’s rights, civility and honesty, who don’t condone sexual assault and mocking people with disabilities, these people also want a good standard of living and a prosperous, secure America.

Conversely, a great many Trump supporters also want security and a good standard of living and are neither misogynist nor racist.

Many are people who have been ruthlessly marginalized, allowed to drift into anomie in physical and social environments that for decades have seen nothing but abject decline.

Any genuine challenge to the Trump regime must incorporate the voices and concerns of many of the people who voted for him.

Otherwise, these marches are just pageantry , offering nothing but the vain spectacle of pious liberals dilating their plumage while preaching to the converted.

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