Opinion, Staff Editorial

After the march, taking the next steps toward change

On Friday, the 45th president was inaugurated. The next day, half a million individuals marched on Washington, D.C. in the Women’s March, a millions more marched in cities around the world. The grassroots movement advocated for a variety of issues perceived to be neglected or threatened by the new administration, including pro-choice, LGBT rights and immigration.

However, the trendy appeal of the event itself may have drawn out a lot of people who had not previously been engaged in serious activism.The protests were filled with pink hats, witty posters and celebrity appearances. There were rallies, musical performances and invigorating chants.

As college students, we witnessed our peers join in on the marches or attended them ourselves, including a sister assembly in Bayfront Park in downtown Miami.

Americans watching the events unfold had questions: What was the point of the march? The election was over, so why did the protesters not simply get over it?

This sentiment rejects the very foundation of democracy that citizens have the freedom and responsibility to voice their concerns and not merely accept the actions of an administration.

The visibility garnered by the march is impactful in itself. Though it has been criticized for being “unfocused,” the movement was an effective way to educate and invigorate individuals who might not normally be politically involved.

However, for those who participated in the marches, and those who spoke out against them, it is important to back words with action. Activism does not stop when the cameras turn off and the crowds disperse.

Understanding the root of the causes is important. There is a difference between protesting President Trump and protesting white supremacy. There is a difference between protesting an election and protesting institutionalized misogyny. Focusing solely on the election will lead to a large drop-off in enthusiasm once the administration becomes the status quo, but it takes continuous, relentless activism to promote concrete progress.

Amid a series of high-stakes votes, increased campaigns for people to call representatives are promising. If more people realize the importance of putting in time and effort for the issues they care about and start placing calls, writing letters, canvassing for their political candidates, registering voters or just being civically engaged in their local community, then the sense of pride surrounding the march will be well-deserved.

Political engagement is important, and if this post-inauguration momentum is sustainable, then perhaps we will have learned a lesson from this election cycle.

Editorials represent the majority view of The Miami Hurricane editorial board. 

 

January 25, 2017

Reporters

Editorial Board

The Miami Hurricane


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

Boston College star Ky Bowman came down with a 102-degree fever on Saturday night. Jordan Chatman an ...

A six-pack of Hurricanes notes on a Sunday: ▪ New UM defensive coordinator Blake Baker has asked UM ...

Emese Hof and No. 20 Miami think they can play with anyone, and it shows. Hof scored 18 of her 25 po ...

New University of Miami baseball head coach Gino DiMare wanted to start strong. He got perfection. T ...

Former University of Miami star running back Mark Walton was arrested late Friday on a charge of mis ...

UM alumna Alina Mayo Azze, who has covered a myriad of topics during her 37-year career, has been a ...

Happiness and well-being scholar Tal Ben-Shahar is UM’s newest Distinguished Presidential Scholar. ...

The University of Miami will host the first symposium to explore LGBTQ human rights across the Ameri ...

UM experts react to a new ban that prohibits people in Key West from using certain types of sunscree ...

A matchmaker extraordinaire, Ricardo Cepeda, the manager of the UM Zebrafish Facility, is passionate ...

The No. 20 Miami women's basketball team stormed back from a 14-point deficit to pick up the bi ...

Brian Van Belle struck out five over six shutout innings to help the Canes sweep Rutgers on opening ...

The Hurricanes fell in Chestnut Hill, 64-57. ...

The sophomore first baseman slugged his second homer of the weekend to lead the Canes to a series wi ...

Junior Renate Grimstad led the way for Miami and is tied for 18th at one-over-par, while sophomore K ...

TMH Twitter
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.