Diamond Bar students march for women
February 26, 2017
Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.
Email This Story
A day after the presidential inauguration, more than three million people flocked the streets in the biggest one-day protest in U.S. history. The Women’s March served as a nationwide cry for minority rights and brought an anti-Trump ideology to the attention of our country.
Taking the opportunity to stand up for their beliefs, a handful of Diamond Bar students participated in the march on the streets of downtown Los Angeles. Whether to stand up against the beliefs of the newly elected president or make a difference in something even bigger, members of the DBHS community, Marisa Umeh, Lauren Hong, Isabel Tuason, Nisha Sandhu, and Mia Thacker.
Junior Umeh took a step further and visited Washington, D.C. with her uncle to witness the inauguration, the Women’s March the next day and the All American Inaugural Ball hosted at the Hyatt.
“Because my uncle is a conservative Republican, I was able to speak with a lot of people who had a completely different mindset, and I tried to sympathize with them and understand where they were coming from. At the same time, being able to go to the Women’s March, I saw people who felt like they were being actually threatened by the new administration, and it was clear to see the contrast,” Umeh said.
Junior Tuason was involved with the march through “Care,” a nonprofit organization that her family is involved in. Not only was she there to help her family, but she also jumped at the chance to be part of a movement she believed in and even brought her friends, juniors Sandhu and Thacker.
“I wanted to be in a place where people understood my opinions. Especially in the political climate [that] we’re in, I felt that my opinion didn’t matter and I was scared people I love were going to be hurt because of the opinions of others. I wanted to be part of something greater and something that meant more,” Tuason said.
From morning to afternoon, protesters marched in the city-wide event, brandishing posters and yelling about prevalent issues in today’s social and political climate. Mentioning the focus on topics such as the Black Lives Matter movement, the Dakota Access Pipeline and pro-choice abortion rights, the DBHS protesters felt as though taking steps to be more politically aware was important to stand up for their beliefs.
“These issues are political, but it isn’t just about politics. I don’t want people to think I just want to fight for the sake of arguing. For me, these are basic human rights everyone deserves, not debate points, and I don’t want to trivialize the things I stand for,” Sandhu said.
The activists discussed how the atmosphere of the march was unified in a common stance for equality and human rights. While advocating for change, the students were able to feel a sense of unity for a common cause.
“ Everyone is equaled out there, and there’s no focus on one person or group of people who are marching,” Thacker said.
These students attribute their passion for the march to the discomfort they felt from the environment that developed from this year’s election.
“Obviously, I wouldn’t march for something I don’t believe in. If I believe in something, I’m going to stand up for it. If I’m bother
ing people for what is right- if I get to punch a Nazi to tell them that this is wrong- then I’m going to do what is right. It’s an obligation, and to do nothing is essentially to take the side of the other person,” Tuason said.
Freshman Hong also decided to participate in the march to express her feelings about the recent election, and express her interest in civil rights issues.
“It really surprised me that there were that so many people in the area willing to stand up for human rights… There was police there too, which was confusing, but at that time, it really felt like we were fighting for our rights,” Hong said.
With the minority representation and passionate environment, protests for rights appealed to all the marchers, and the students all have the desire to participate in similar events in the future.
“Looking back at history and civil rights movements, you always think, would I be the person protesting, or the person on the sideline? It was amazing to march and be a part of living history,” Umeh said.