Local Folks Honored 2024 Women’s March

The Women’s March “Bigger Than Roe” call to action was held on Saturday, January 20, across the country. Grand Marais was one of the official sister rallies for the work of the international organization Women’s March. 

Despite double-digit windchills, a group of citizens showed up in downtown Grand Marais with signs, banners, and boundless energy to advocate for women’s rights. 

Denny FitzPatrick, an organizer of the local event, said, “With the approaching 50th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, we are challenging politicians at all levels to support reproductive freedom and women’s rights, and we are beginning to galvanize voters for the 2024 elections.” He added, “We received lots of encouraging and supportive honking from passing cars.”

Women’s March began on social media the day after the 2016 presidential election. Teresa Shook posted that the country needed a pro-woman march in reaction to the election result. Thousands of women signed up to march, and veteran activists and organizers came on board to plan a large-scale event on January 21, 2017.

Thousands of people marched at the US Capital that day, and an estimated three million people simultaneously gathered in cities and towns across the country. Organizers expected some 200,000 people to attend the Washington rally, but as many as 500,000 showed up. 

On the same day, millions participated in sister marches in all 50 states and more than 30 foreign countries. Later estimates showed that some 4.1 million people participated in the various Women’s Marches around the globe.

The participants in the various Women’s March events that year voiced support for various causes, including women’s and reproductive rights, criminal justice, defense of the environment and the rights of immigrants, Muslims, LGBTQ+ people, and the disabled.

Rather than a single-day demonstration, the Women’s March organizers and participants intended their protests as the start of a resistance movement. The Women’s March has become an annual event with year-round organizing and advocacy. Further information can be found at www.womensmarch.com