A year after millions flocked to Washington D.C., New York City, Los Angeles and even Sag Harbor to protest the inauguration of President Donald J. Trump, protesters gathered again on Saturday — attracting an estimated 600 to the rally in Sag Harbor, protesting the president and his administration’s policies on the environment, healthcare, immigration and women’s rights.
“We are here together a year after the historic women’s march on Washington, the hundreds of similar events across the country and across the globe,” said Suffolk County Legislator Bridget Fleming. “We are joining in the spirit of many thousands of our sisters and brothers who, like us, are standing together today throughout the country in defense of ideals and of our nation.”
“We are here together because we cannot be alone and we will not be silent,” she continued. “We recognize and embrace our responsibility as members of our national community to elevate the rhetoric and the ideas that are motivating our society. We can do nothing other because, as the great Martin Luther King, Jr. once said, ‘Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about the things that matter.’”
The #metoo movement galvanized some at the rally — signs and speeches calling for greater women’s rights and protection from abuse and harassment. Legislator Fleming called on the crowd to support women who come forward and continue the work that furthers that cause.
“We must continue that support, and we must continue that work,” she said.
Critical of polices, “from drilling for oil in our beloved oceans to a tax plan that will have crippling effects on our Long Island communities, to immigration policies that leave our young, important, productive members of society living in fear,” Ms. Fleming called on the crowd to participate in the political process. “We need to vote,” she said. “We need to vote this year.”
Among the other speakers was Pierson High School senior Sinead Murray, one of the founders of a feminist club at the school.
“What I am most proud of doing is opening up the dialogue in Sag Harbor, not only in our school, but in our community, for feminism,” said Ms. Murray. “I think before we were a club — because we are the first feminism club in Sag Harbor, that people didn’t talk about it — it was taboo.”
Ms. Murray offered a list of advice for young girls coming into the movement.
“Learn from anyone and everyone,” she said. “There are countless numbers of women in this community with stories of courage and strength. We are currently surrounded by them — take advantage of their knowledge and ask them as many questions as you can.”
“Being called beautiful and cute and pretty can be nice, but remember you are also intelligent, strong, curious and more,” said Ms. Murray. “You are more than your outside appearance — do not let people reduce you to your body parts.”