Opinion
Women’s March numbers show strength of U.S.
Old Gold & Black
By
Print Managing Editor
Thursday, January 26, 2017

No president Trump, the media did not lie about the sheer volume of people who attended the women’s march in Washington.

No, the media did not downplay the number of people who attended the 58th Inauguration. The truth is, more than three times the number of people who attended Trump’s inauguration attended the women’s march in Washington (not including those who marched nation-wide and even world-wide.)

According to the New York Times, crowd scientists Marcel Altenburg and Keith Still from Manchester Metropolitan University in Britain have said that approximately 160,000 attended the inauguration — not the one million Trump claimed. The same article noted that the area for the inauguration only holds roughly 720,000 people. So no, the media was not lying when they said that fewer people attended the inauguration than the women’s march in Washington.

However, I do have to give Trump some leeway. According to the crowd scientists, the vantage point Trump had from the podium may not have allowed him to see the empty spaces past the first third of the supposed crowd. He had a very similar view as former president Barack Obama had in 2009. So, I can see where he is coming from when he claims that a million people came to the inauguration. But after the fact he clearly had the ability to look at photos and feeds from the event, so I cannot give him too much slack.

Regardless of how many people went to Trump’s inauguration, I am pleasantly surprised by the number of people who marched in Washington and around the world following the inauguration. Regardless of politics, we should all be proud that so many people around the country were able to stand up for what they believe in and that so many people came together to unite and stand together in the fight for equality for all. We can credit Trump for giving a reason to unite.

According to The Washington Times, the permit obtained for the march in Washington estimated that 200,000 people would participate in the march. However, more than 470,000 people attended (in comparison to the 160,000 estimated at the inauguration). Due to the excess number of people, those who attended found it hard to march because they filled the entirety of the march space before it even began. While some were frustrated at the lack of ability to move, I find this to be amazing. In thinking about this, I have to be happy that this was the case. More people came than predicted. More people united than predicted. More people stood up for their rights and stood up against Trump than predicted.

The election may not have gone the way many thought, but Saturday’s marches across the nation went better than expected. Although it is challenging to give exact numbers on how many people attended these marches, there are reasonable estimates. On the low estimate side, Los Angeles held 500,000 people, New York held 400,000 people and San Francisco 100,000 people. In an estimate of the entire country, approximately 3.67 million to 4.6 million people marched across the U.S.

This makes me proud to call myself an American. I could not have said that statement back in November, but after this weekend and after talking with those that did march, I can once again say that I am proud. Hearing stories of how friends and family marched for themselves and for the equal rights of every person in this country made me really think of the issues at hand — every person needs to be represented and protected.

Regardless of our politics and if we do or do not support Trump, the fact that millions across the country came together and stood up for what they believe in is truly an inspiring statistic. These marches are just the start for what is to come, and as many have been saying, it is not too late to join the movement in making sure that every person has equal rights. This movement needs to represent everyone.