On Friday, Donald J. Trump was sworn into office as America’s 45th president. Websites were wiped clean of mentions of climate change and the country tumbled officially into the realm of #AlternativeFacts. For journalists, and citizens, the operative word going forward is “vigilance.”
On Saturday, upwards of 1.5 million people took to the streets around the country and world in solidarity with Americans who support human rights, equality, science, access to health care, and real facts (over alternative ones).
The Women’s March on Washington had grown into a national and international tidal wave of action. I was in Boston where the Women’s March for America was anticipating a crowd of about 80,000. On the T ride toward the Boston Commons, an ever-growing wave of women (and men) donning pink pussyhats boarded while more rode bikes across the Longfellow Bridge with protest signs lashed to their baskets, and it began to seem like there might be more in attendance than expected. Many more. Many many more. As Boston Commons filled and cell phone service crashed, there were speeches by Mayor Marty Walsh, Senator Elizabeth Warren, and the Reverend Mariama White-Hammond.
By the time the crowd was to make its one-mile loop for the march, the only possible movement was a slow-mo shuffle. It took hours for everyone to make their way peacefully through the streets. They chanted “This is what democracy looks like!” and sang out Fiona Apple’s “We don’t want you tiny hands anywhere near my underpants!” I saw a little girl belting out “My body! My choice!” and a lone man with a severe face holding a poster: “Trump. Make America Great Again.” Passerbys ignored him.
By this morning, city officials estimated there were at least 125,000 people. [UPDATE: Make that 175,000.]
Inching through the masses, camera in hand, here’s a selection of photos I took during what felt like an historic day: