I could begin by introducing myself. Normally when I write something like this, I would give a background. I would include my age, gender, religious viewpoint, political party, and anything else that would give you an idea of where I am coming from. But I do not think any of that matters here. You do not need to know who I voted for, what the color of my skin is, or where I worship on weekends. None of that matters when I explain my shock upon reading news articles reflecting on the two marches which took over social media this past week. All you need to know about me is that I believe in love.
That being said, everything is very one-sided. In reflecting upon it and attending one of these marches myself, I've realized that is the gist of what a protest is: one-sided. They fail to empathize with the other. Are marches supposed to understand the feelings of others? Probably not. But for some reason I thought the remarks on social media following it might try to.
The March for Life and the Women's March, both in Washington D.C. and reanimated around the globe, were overwhelming in numbers. Hundreds of thousands of individuals decided to take up their signs these past two weekends and carry out the rights given to them in the constitution. This is something that the United States of America has always been proud of: freedom of speech. The first amendment reads: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances." Freedom of speech and press is a main contributor to making the United States the "Land of the Free."
Upon reading some articles comparing the March for Life and the Women's March, I was astounded at the bias behind the news. It is extremely easy to categorize the authors behind the articles; who is pro-life and who is pro-choice, who is republican and who is democrat. I guess I should not have been so surprised, because the media is rarely ever free of prejudice. Yet, things I saw made me realize that these media platforms do not give us a situation's whole picture. All they do is agree with those with similar viewpoints. They are not empathetic in the slightest.
For example, one of the articles I came across while scrolling through Facebook had photos from both marches. Within comparing the signs, signs depicted from the March for Life read "All life is sacred" while the signs from the Women's March read "The P**** grabs back." This author was clearly writing in favor of the March for Life. Another article I stumbled upon did the same thing, but the March for Life signs it referenced had pictures of aborted babies while the Women's March signs encouraged us to "except all people equally." This author was clearly writing in favor of the Women's March. The truth is, all of these signs were present at the marches. I am not going to go into opinions that the marchers at the March for Life should not be getting their point across with graphic photos of unborn children or that the marchers of the Women's March should not have been trashing Trump to be heard. The internet does not need more of that negativity. Let's just say there were the graphic and the non-graphic, the verbal and the non-verbal, the direct and the indirect. But none of these media platforms we see will attest to that.
The sad part is, these two should not be compared. Yes, some of the beliefs may have clashed and tied together at some spots (for example: the topic of Planned Parenthood). For the most part, if you look at the goals of each of the marches they were meant to work towards two different things. So that being said, here is my ideology.
Buddha gave these simple guidelines when speaking: "Is it true, is it necessary, and is it kind?" Standing up for what we believe, in the United States, is within our written rights. However, being all-loving means that we put that love before shame. We respect each other's believes without spreading negativity. These marches that took place are an expression of our rights and they have indeed made history. On the other hand, true history is written by what comes after (A.K.A. the affect it has). While you read these follow-ups and hear people talk about it, we should first coat our eyes in understanding/respect and filter our ears with love. Nothing positive has ever come from shaming another human being for the self.