This Is What Democracy Looks Like – National Rally For Reproductive Rights

This Is What Democracy Looks Like – National Rally For Reproductive Rights

Women’s March National Rally – Reproductive Rights.

Olympia, Lacey, Tumwater, Tacoma, Seattle, joined hundreds of cities across the U.S to rally with tens of thousands of people for support of Reproductive Rights – here we gathered at the State Capitol on October 2, 2021.

It was exciting to see people converging, carrying signs, gathering in groups as we approached the capitol. The crowd grew denser the closer we got. The rally began with a march from the Capitol Campus into town, returning to the Capitol where people lined the steps of the legislative building and the organizers set up the P.A. system. Many previous rallies that we attended featured well known speakers; in contrast, the speakers at this rally were often first-time public speakers, some were attending their first rally – they ranged in age from 15-75, they shared their personal histories and reasons for joining together to support reproductive rights.

Older participants know how hard it has been to change the anti-choice culture, how the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision meant that – finally – women could have access to safe and legal abortions. Their children and grandchildren join in the current fight, because, sadly, reproductive rights are again being challenged, and the hardships caused by limiting abortion access continue to disproportionately impact the BIPOC communities.

I was already an adult in 1973 and remember well the horror stories of what it was like before that historic date. When I was growing up there was a “home for un-wed mothers” in our neighborhood; it was shrouded in mystery. I remember the stigma and the danger for women who had no choices for safely, legally, terminating a pregnancy.

When I saw the young girls, marching with their mothers and big sisters, as one sign said, I’m Marching for My Future – I was proud to be standing and marching with them, marching to assure we won’t go back, back to barbaric times; and as a man, I march against toxic masculinity and an outdated patriarchy.


On a related note, I want to mention a new book that has just been released. This project by photographer Roslyn Banish, Focus on Abortion, is a continuation of her ongoing exploration of social dynamics through photography and text that began with her 1976 publication of City Families: Chicago and London.


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Rally to Protect Mueller – Ventura

Last month we did a road trip on the west coast of the U.S. Weather was perfect, traffic was light (with exceptions), it felt good to see friends and family, discover new places, and witness changes that have occurred in areas we have visited in the past.

Rather than designing a page with images and a travelogue, I am providing a link to a series of images on my Flickr account as a way to easily share them. This event was a Rally to Protect Mueller, in Ventura, California. It was scheduled for the end of the workday, beginning at 5:00 p.m. There was still light in the sky when we arrived, and in some of the photos smoke is visible from the beginning of the Woolsey Fire. The passion and concerns of citizens were evident in their signage and enthusiasm. Participants of all ages remained at this intersection long after the sunset.

To view this set of images, click on this link to open the folder, which also includes other events at rallies from the past two years.

Posted by Thomas Alix Johnston in Blog, 0 comments