Why I Marched

There are a lot of blogs floating around right now about why people marched last weekend in DC, and everyone seems to find something to relate to in them, which is pretty awesome. Its awesome that so many women are gathering together, supporting each together, and focusing on the ways America is actually already pretty great: equality.

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I’ve never been a very politically outspoken person. I don’t follow the news or politics well, so I hesitate to discuss it in public because all I can really say is, I like being kind to people and protecting the earth. I’ve always thought, what will happen will happen. Nothing I do or say will impact it. If I just stay hidden in the woods, the world will keep spinning on.

And then, to my disbelief, Trump won the presidency. I’m still in a little bit of shock about it. I thought for sure it wasn’t going to happen. So did a lot of people I think.

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I watched in horror as he seemed bullet proof, able to say horrible things, make short sighted, barely thought through actions, and still rise to the top.

“How did this happen?” I kept asking myself. And I realized I had played a part. All the complacency I lived in so comfortably in the past few years, combined with everyone else like me, if we just keep doing our thing and minding our business, everything will turn out ok, didn’t necessarily work.

It wasn’t turning out ok.

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So I found myself in a mass of pink-wearing strangers last Saturday in D.C. I had a hot pink sign, one side said “Equality makes America Great” and one side said “Our bodies, our business, our choice”.

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There was no real march, because there were so many people, but the energy was amazing. The feeling of empowerment: that I can have an opinion, that its not ok to have a president representing us who the majority of America didn’t want to represent us, someone who doesn’t believe in scientific facts, who presents lies cloaked as “Alternative facts”, who would rather risk ruining the environment to make a quick buck…

All those things are not ok. And its ok to join with millions of people and say to the world, “This is not what America represents. Equality makes us Great, not judgement, not rash, short sided decisions, but respect for the environment and its inhabitants.”

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There’s a ton of news right now, so much so its hard to understand what actually is happening. All I know is that as I read reports of decisions being made that threaten the environment, I find myself more and more drawn to the wilderness, to Pisgah.

The other day I hiked 5 miles with Pigeon. We found a little clearing on top of a mountain, in the sun. I took off my shirt and shoes and laid in the grass, and after he was done running around, he came and curled up next to me with his head in my lap.

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Gaia (the earth) was holding us, nurturing us, repairing us.

And all I could think was, “I come here when I’m broken to find the missing parts of myself. If we don’t protect this wilderness, what happens to people like me?”

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So that’s why I marched. Because I want the world to know that America is already great. The things that make us great are equality, the freedom to choose the right decisions for your life without judgement, and our massive park and forest systems, which protect something we can never get back: the environment. So that in generations from now, people like me will have place to go to fix themselves.

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