The word protesting often comes with a negative stigma attached. I think this stigma should be changed and protesting should be portrayed as a good thing. It is something to remind us, the people, that we are powerful and that are voices matter. We are important and we have the ability to make big influences in our world. If we look through history, any large movement or social change was sparked by people with something to say and fighting to say it. A collection of people with various differences coming together as one voice is something beautiful and inspirational. Here's three reasons why I feel this way:
1. Practicing the 1st amendment
The fist amendment says that we, as people of the United States of America, have the right to assemble and petition the government. As a democratic country, it is our duty as citizens to exercise the rights given to us. By protesting, we are speaking for those who cannot vote. We are speaking for those whose voices are being silenced. As a democracy, we are given the opportunity to speak out for things that we believe in and to have a say in what we want to see our society turn into. Not many countries have the power that we have to speak our minds and directly promote change. We have a responsibly to take advantage of this opportunity.
2. Sparking conversation
Over the past month or so, I have seen many opinions regarding the reasons to protest. I have seen people say that in today’s world, we do not have reasons to protest. This was in reference to the Women’s March and many other rallies that concern the numerous troubling issues in today’s world. Personally, this just blows my mind. One thing I believe has to stop is people claiming that others experiences and times of prejudice are a lie. Just because you do not encounter prejudice personally, does not mean that it does not exist. I have never been to China, but I know it exists. I can read other’s testimonials and see pictures of it. Just because that experience is not a part of my reality, doesn’t mean it’s not a part of someone else's. The positive affect that protesting has is the ability to create knowledge about the real life injustice that people still face every day. Protesting is portrayed as this huge, violent riot of people tearing up neighborhoods. That is not protesting. Protesting is a group of people with stories who are willing to share them in hope that positive change is near.
3. Coming together
One thing that marches have in common throughout history is the fact that millions of people came together all with the same purpose. People from all different backgrounds bound together with a goal. I find that to be incredibly beautiful. One example that personally astounded me was watching on TV as over a million women walked in the Women’s Marches across America. Just seeing woman of all backgrounds supporting each other and creating a positive environment was so inspiring. In today’s society, TV shows and media that pit women against each other and make us believe that were supposed to be in competition, surround us. I believe that marches help to unite our country. It teaches us that despite our differences we are all human and fighting to make our world a better place.