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Thousands gather for Women's March rallies across the US

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  • People participate in the annual Women''''''''''''''''s March in Washington on Sunday. [MARY F. CALVERT/REUTERS]

    WASHINGTON-Thousands gathered in cities across the United States on Saturday as part of the nationwide Women''''''''''''''''s March rallies focused on issues such as climate change, pay equity, reproductive rights and immigration.

    Hundreds showed up in New York and thousands in Washington for the rallies, which aim to harness the political power of women, although crowds were noticeably smaller than in previous years. Marches were scheduled on Saturday in more than 180 cities.

    The first marches in 2017 drew hundreds of thousands of people to rallies in cities across the country on the day after US President Donald Trump was inaugurated. That year''''''''''''''''s march in Washington drew close to 1 million people.

    In Manhattan on Saturday, hundreds of people gathered as part of a so-called Rise and Roar rally at separate events in Foley Square and Columbus Circle.

    "Today, we will be the change that is needed in this world! Today, we rise into our power!" activist Donna Hylton told a cheering crowd in Foley Square.

    Snow began falling by the afternoon in Manhattan, apparently putting a damper on plans for the two groups to converge in large numbers near Times Square.

    In downtown Los Angeles, thousands of men, women and children filled several blocks as they made their way from a plaza to a park adjacent to City Hall, where a rally featured speeches by Jennifer Siebel Newsom, the wife of California Governor Gavin Newsom, Mayor Eric Garcetti, Representative Maxine Waters and others.

    Jennifer Siebel Newsom credited women for mobilizing against gun violence, creating the #MeToo movement against sexual harassment and discrimination, and putting the Democratic majority back in the House of Representatives.

    "In 2020, I have no doubt that it will be women who will lead again, rise up and move this country forward on a path toward justice," she said.

    In Denver, organizers opted to skip the rally after the march and instead invited participants to meet with local organizations to learn more about issues such as reproductive rights, climate change, gun safety and voting.

    Several thousand came out for the protest in Washington, far fewer than last year when about 100,000 people held a rally east of the White House. But as in previous years, many of the protesters made the trip to the nation''''''''''''''''s capital from cities across the country to express their opposition to Trump and his policies. From their gathering spot on Freedom Plaza, they had a clear view down Pennsylvania Avenue to the US Capitol, where the impeachment trial gets underway in the Senate next week.

    In Washington, three key issues seemed to galvanize most of the protesters: Climate change, immigration and reproductive rights.

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    "I teach a lot of immigrant students, and in political times like this I want to make sure I''''''''''''''''m using my voice to speak up for them," said Rochelle McGurn, 30, an elementary school teacher from Burlington, Vermont, who was in Washington to march. "They need to feel like they belong, because they do."

    Agencies via Xinhua

pubdate:2022-01-22 | postnum () | copyToClipBoard | print

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