When women march by Richard Pfeifer

"This is the year of the woman." -State Senator Jamilah Nasheed

photo by Richard Pfeifer

Under a cloudy St. Louis sky, encompassing the decommissioned St. Louis City Hall two voices spoke: one of the sign and one of the protester. Weathering the cold temperature, men and women showed up in the thousands to protest the policies of the Donald Trump Administration within the past year, Jan. 20. In addition to serving as a symbolic reunion to the protests of the year prior.

According to a collaboration between the University of Connecticut and Denver, during the hangover hours of Trump's inauguration an estimated high of 5.2 million Americans took to the streets in protest- 20,000 in St. Louis alone. One year and one day after the Presidential Inauguration thousands of protesters engulfed downtown St. Louis’s Market Street once more, congregating at two speaker locations in front of the decommissioned City Hall and in front of the Arch. Protesters held signs voicing outrage at the past year of events from a planned border wall to an intended defunding of Planned Parenthood. Although protesting government actions on a federal level, local and state government officials were present. State Senator Maria Chappelle Nadal, State Senator Jamilah Nasheed and Alice Prince representing St. Louis’s Mayor Lyda Krewson were those who spoke at the rally outside the decommissioned City Hall to the applause of supporters.

photo by Megan Van Buren

“This is the year of the women,” Nasheed said. “We’re going to stand up, stand out and let our voices be heard. I marched today for those who cannot speak for themselves. I am a voice for the voiceless. [Since the last Women's March], more women are involved than ever before.”

photo by Kara Rieger

Diana Kelly-Frank who was not an organizer of the prior years protest was one of many key organizers of this year’s protest. Although an informal reunion of the prior years protest many key leadership changes have taken place. When original organizers of the St. Louis Women's March declined the opportunity to lead this year’s Kelly-Frank stepped in.

“It’s our duty,” said Kelly-Frank. “It’s the anniversary of Roe vs Wade and our President is a dunce. They told me if I wanted to do it then I would need to organize it. That was two weeks ago. I was not involved at all last year except for marching, but this year we still got together a committee and now we’re here [marching and speaking].”

photo by Megan Van Buren

Kelly-Frank believes the future rests on citizen participation in the government, and that government encouraging its citizens to practice their constitutional rights. Alice Prince agreed and decided the physical barriers separating her and the crowd were getting in the way. She encouraged the crowd to break the barriers and gather with her on the steps of the decommissioned City Hall where she emotionally spoke on behalf of Mayor Krewson.

“We are unstoppable,” Prince said. “To all the women here today: no matter how many people try to silence you, your voice can’t be stifled. Your light is not dimmable. Your spirit is unbreakable. Your commitment to equal rights for women is not negotiable. You are unstoppable.”

Photos taken by Kara Reiger, Megan Van Buren and Hannah Cohen during the protests down market street, Jan. 20. Protesters numbered in the thousands as speakers took the stage in front of the decommissioned City Hall and the Arch.

Created By
Richard Pfeifer

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