The Women’s March 2019 — and its tarnished background

Women March in London

On Saturday 19th of January thousands of women gathered all around the globe to march against gender inequalities and violences.

Feminists took over the main streets of approximately 89 cities across the five continents, celebrating the third anniversary of the Women’s March. The rallies started in 2017, when U.S. women gathered to protest against their new President Donald Trump.

Women protesting in London

oToday, the movement is facing serious internal conflicts as its leaders are accused of discrimination and unsatisfactry behaviors regarding the inclusion of the LGBT+ community and ethnic minorities. Particularly, gun control activist and co-president Tamika Mallory was accused of anti-semitism for having endorsed the Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan, infamous for his anti-semitic speeches and author of the book “The Secret Relationship Between Black and Jews”, which Harvard’s professor Henry Louis Gates Jr. defined as “the bible of the new anti-semitism” in a New York Times article dated 1992. Mrs. Mallory claimed to condemn every form of hate, but nonetheless she didn’t pull her support from Farrakhan’s ideas.

Table Magazine published a thorough reportage about the troubled power relationships at the highest levels of the Women’s March Organization. According to it, anti-semitic behaviors had been constant since the very first meetings of the association, back in 2016, when Tamika Mallory and Carmen Perez — another future leader of the movement — “allegedly first asserted that Jewish people bore a special collective responsibility as exploiters of black and brown people and even, according to a close secondhand source, claimed that Jews were proven to have been leaders of the American slave trade.”

Jewish activist Vanessa Wruble reported that she has been excluded from the organizational team of the Women’s March because of her jewish religious background, and went on founding her own movement called “March On”. This led to the organization of two simultaneous marches in New York City on January 19th: one run by the “Women’s March Alliance” — led by Mrs. Mallory, Mrs. Perez and others — and another one arranged by “The Women’s march NYC”, which formally didn’t have the permission to demonstrate.

But the movement didn’t stop in the U.S.A. Women got together to make their voices heard across the globe.

In London, the streets were flooded with demonstrators of all ages, ethnicities and genders that walked from Oxford Circus to Trafalgar Square, passing through Piccadilly Circus and Regent Street. The theme of the event was “Bread and Roses”, an homage to the feminist activist Rose Schneiderman who protested after the tragic fire at the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory in 1911, stating: “The worker must have bread, but she must have roses, too.” This quote was then taken up during the revolutionary strike that took place in 1912 in Lawrence, Massachusetts.

“The worker must have bread, but she must have roses, too”

Women protesting in London
Women’s March on London

At the end of the march several speakers took the stage and delivered speeches to the public. Among them was were Helen Pankhurst, great granddaughter of the suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst, Labour MP Dawn Butler and many activists with different backgrounds.

Women protesting in London with Europeans flags
Women’s March on London


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