Here's a video of Oregon Governor Kate Brown speaking at the beginning of the Salem Women's March. She got the crowd fired up with plenty of progressive talk about human rights that have to be respected no matter who is president. We're SO fortunate to have Kate Brown as Oregon's governor. Thanks for speaking at the rally and marching with us afterwards.
The Salem Women's March drew thousands of people to a rally on the Capitol Mall and a march through downtown. The march ended where it began, and people celebrated the positivity of the day with some post-march dancing. Hey, Portland, you had more numbers at your Women's March, but I bet we had more fun! Even in the rain, which explains the drop in the corner of my camera lens.
Here's one of the most uplifting moments at the Salem Women's March: a passionate song by Zyel Crier, a student at South Salem High School. She's the daughter of Shelaswau Bushnell Crier, the rally's keynote speaker. I was fortunate to be able to stand close to the podium while taking the video, since my camera was able to capture both Crier and the Women's March crowd who responded so enthusiastically to her song's inspiring message.
My wife, Laurel, was a co-leader of today's Salem Women's March. Here's most of the talk she gave at the rally. It was rainy and windy, which probably accounts for what sounds like video wind noise. You can still clearly hear what Laurel says, though, which speaks to what citizens must do in these Trumpian times.
Here's another inspiring moment at yesterday's Salem Women's March. "We are family" is a great theme for this town. It'd be great if the Powers That Be in our city turned into EVERYBODY in Salem, rather than just the privileged folks.
Lastly, here is what Salem City Councilor Cara Kaser said at the rally.
"Like so many of you, I awoke two months ago to a changed nation. A changed national narrative that talks of building walls, instead of bridges; a narrative that fears and reviles refugees instead of offering comfort; a narrative that talks of denying women the right to control their body; and a narrative that doesn’t believe that love wins.
I remember hearing all of that, and I remember feeling scared, and anxious, and alone.
And then I remembered something else. I remembered that I wasn’t alone. I remembered that I could take action and that I could effect change here in my own corner of the nation.
And I remembered that no one could take away my hope, my courage, and my unrelenting endeavour to make this city, our community, our home, the kind of place that recognizes and protects our rights as women, and as people of color, and as immigrants, and as lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender -- all of our human rights.
But make no mistake, protecting our rights will take a lot of work. And it will take a lot more than clicking “Like” on Facebook or retweeting a post.
It will take tenacity.
It will take grit.
It will take courage.
And it will take all of us here -- and many more -- to do it.
I implore everyone here today to have the courage to stand up and fight for what’s right, and to take action today on the important work in our community that needs to be done right here. And I truly believe that everyone here is already courageous, because you are here. Because you have made the choice and taken the time and effort to be here. To stand shoulder-to-shoulder with your family, friends, neighbors, and people you’ve never met to make a public announcement and proclamation that you will not stand idly by when justice and liberty for all is something not yet realized, and is something that we must strive to accomplish and protect.
I implore you to carry this courage you have with you today and go to back and make the time to talk with and get to you know your neighbors, and your co-workers; get to know your children’s friends and their parents. Have the courage to attend your local neighborhood association, your parent-teacher group, or volunteer at your local school, homeless shelter, food bank, or wherever you can.
Take the time to learn who your locally elected leaders are, know where they stand on the issues, and hold them accountable for their actions. Attend your City Council meetings and have the courage to speak up and out about issues that you care deeply about. And please, have the courage to run for an elected office yourself. You really can do it and I would be happy to talk with you about it.
Lastly, I want to share something with you that my 87-year-old grandmother shared with me. It’s something that I have kept close to my heart, and it’s something that has sustained me in difficult times.
My grandparents were immigrants to the United States, they never graduated from high school, and they took evening classes and passed a test to become US citizens when they were adults in the 1960s.
A couple of years ago, I recorded hours worth of my grandparents talking about their life and their memories that they wanted to preserve for our family. At the end of many weeks of recording, after they had told me their whole life story, I asked my grandmother a question -- I said, “Grandma, after living for nearly 90 years, and seeing everything that’s happened in our country and world during that time, if there was just one thing that you could have told me after all of this, just one thing that you want me to always remember, what would it be?” And my grandmother looked at me and paused, and then she said, “Know that you are loved.”
Know that you are loved.
Today, in this very moment, in these chaotic, anxious, and trying times, here in our city of Salem, Oregon, I want everyone here to know that you are loved by your fellow sisters and brothers here who rally and march in solidarity with you.
I want everyone here to know that you are courageous.
I want everyone here to know that you are strong.
And that we will stand, and we will fight together for as long as it takes until what’s right is done."
NOW -- LET’S GET TO WORK!