Protestors hoisted a cornucopia of signs at the Hudson Women’s March Saturday, most referencing women’s rights in one way or another, but the most common theme was not what the signs were for, but against.
“Super-Callous -Fascist-Racist-Braggadocios” (photo of Trump included)
“Voting Is My Superpower”
“Trump Be Gone”
“Fight like a Nasty Women”
“Grab my Midterm Vote”
…and my personal favorite:
“Ugh, where do I even start?”
John Faso, the district’s Republican congressman, was also roundly dissed, both by signs and by those I talked to during the march. All six of the democratic primary candidates vying to take on Faso in November were there, or scheduled being there.
There were several thousand people at the march. The Register-Star claimed more than 5,000, and Dan Udell, a local videographer who filmed the event, claimed more than 4,000. The most I can say is the march stretched for three blocks, packing Warren Street the whole way.
Linda Geary was at her first women’s march Saturday (her daughter was sick last year, she said) and shot out a litany of reasons she despised Trump, from women’s rights and healthcare to picking fights with North Korea’s Kim Jong-Un and declaring Jerusalem the capital of Israel.
“It’s just a shame we have somebody who’s learning on the job, rather than having any experience in how to govern…I know some people appreciate his candor and his frankness and his regular-joe American thing, but that’s not what I want in a president, I want someone who understands policy,” she said.
“I’m glad to see so many people here today, and I think that there’s people like this all around the country coming out, and everybody’s smiling and happy,” Geary said. “But in their hearts, they’re heavy. Everybody feels heavy.”
Geary frequently calls Faso’s office and talks to staff members about her concerns, she said.
“You kind of get burnt out,” Geary said of the news coming from the White House. “It’s been a long run…every day my husband and I are like, ‘how can we keep up with it?’”
Hosted by Indivisible Chatham, a grassroots Anti-Trump group, the protest started at Seventh Street Park, where speakers took the stage and talked about issues dear to them.
Elena Mosley, director of Operation Unite, a local youth organization, spoke about the need for income equality, eviscerating Trump with her loud, high voice for overturning an Obama era-rule requiring large companies to report wages by race and gender in an attempt to close the wage gap.
Columbia County Coroner Andrea Coleman and Greenport Town Supervisor Kathy Eldridge also spoke about being the first women elected to their positions in the county’s history.
The crowd began drifting to the intersection of Seventh Street at 2 p.m., and, led by musicians and the truly creepy spectacle of a group dressed as women from the dystopian novel “The Handmaid’s Tale,” plunged down Warren Street.
Anne Marie Lord, of Hillsdale, said she marched in New York City last Jan. 20, but decided to go to a local Women’s March this year because it would more directly pressure Faso.
“I just think Faso needs to hear us,” she said. “I don’t know if he necessarily believes the same things as Trump, but I know that he needs to hear how many of his constituents are not supporting Donald Trump.”
Lord, who was marching with her daughter, Maggie Farrell, of Albany, signed up with Democratic Congressional Candidate Dave Clegg at the march, and said she would be checking out the primary candidates “very closely.”
Patricia Gravett, who came to the march with her husband, Antony, said Trump was “undermining what this country is all about,” and admonished Republicans for enabling him.
People were more stirred up since last year due to Trump’s actions in office, she added.
Antony, who assured me his name was spelled that way, noted the different issue-based factions at the march, but said they were coalescing.
“There’s been some commentary in the press that these factions would drive [the march] apart, but I predict that, all over the country and, to some extent, all over the world, these marches will be bringing together the factions under the same umbrella,” he said.
After the march met the end of Warren Street, it was scheduled to go to Basilica Hudson, where there was food, additional speakers and tables to sign up with political campaigns.
I stopped mid-way down Warren and watched the march move as slowly and steadily as a clock down the boulevard, two Hudson police vehicles nosing behind. The crowd grew smaller as they reached the Hudson River in the distance, the individuals with their different signs seeming to form one mass. They turned left, and were out of sight.