Archive | January, 2017

The Future Is Female: The Women’s March on Washington

24 Jan
  • carrie

It is indeed. The trip to Washington was incredible and life changing and also unsettling and just the beginning of the conversation.

So let’s start at the beginning. On Saturday morning we hit the Shady Grove DC Metro stop and found this:

metro

A very very large crowd trying to get into the train station. We were here for hours. Rumors went through the crowd that if you didn’t have a DC metro card you couldn’t get one anymore.

We did not have a DC metro card. The face I was making at this time was not a happy one.

Finally when we got up to the gate – which they had to close to stop people from coming in – the guards said that wasn’t true. We slowly slowly slowly inched our way through the tunnel, to the machines, up the stairs and finally onto a train which spit us out at the National Mall around noon. By this time, Independence Avenue, the location of the rally and start of the march was inapproachable. And when I say inapproachable I means the crowds were wall to wall filling every possible space at every cross street to Independence.

Like this:

YOU did this. KEEP SHOWING UP. (Repost: @averyjo_)

A post shared by Women's March (@womensmarch) on

And that’s ONLY Independence Avenue.

We were LEGION.

At that point we were chanting and hanging out waiting for this thing to happen. By 2:30 when it wasn’t, we started chanting “Let’s March Now”

And then we did. The original route went up Independence but for those of us not there there was no way we could reach it so we headed up the Mall. And when I say up the Mall, I mean pulled down fences, headed up the Mall.

silencepigcrowdground

There were some really amazing chants.

My favorite was “You’re boring, you’re gross, you didn’t win the popular vote.” With runners up being:

“Hands too small, can’t build a wall”

“Welcome to your first day, we will never go away”

And it was refreshing to hear how strong “Black Lives Matters” chants were because, my march seemed to be predominately white and considering 53% of white women voted for him, I’m glad we’re the ones doing the work now. We need to fix this. This is on us.

Neatly summed up in this incredible image:

whitewomen

White feminism is a dangerous and destructive thing and it is on white people to constantly work towards intersectionality and inclusiveness. And I’m hearing a lot of crappy whining from white feminism about how their “good time” is being ruined and to them I say this:

Stop talking. Listen. Really listen. Bite down on the knee jerk reaction to say “But not me” when people of color are talking about racism. You know how we hate #NotAllMen when we’re being #YesAllWomen. Same deal. Shut up and listen to these arguments because we cannot move forward unless we are walking the same path and we cannot do that unless we are together. Conversation – icky awkward it-makes-me-uncomfortable conversation has to happen. People of color live under white supremacy and face racism every day. The least we can do it is listen to them and manage that small bit of discomfort.

Also there was a lot of chatter about how peaceful the march was. And it was. Don’t get me wrong. I saw people taking such good care of each other – lifting each other’s children up, helping the elderly – it was beautiful. But the police let us march all over the Mall because we were predominately white. BLM rallies and marches have snipers, riot gear, pepper spray.

Bullets.

We did not make this peace. Our whiteness did. And now it’s important for us to show up for BLM and NoDAPL and pro-immigration and anti-Islamophobia rallies and marches and to truly stand with our sisters.

There was also a lot of really positive body image stuff at the march which I LOVED. I mean, come on? This is anatomically correct!

vag

And this beautiful woman dressed up!

vag2

And seriously, all the men (and some women) complaining about the Women’s March being obsessed with pussy can just stop right there. Just remember that every day women navigate the constant miserable tightrope that is knowing that our vaginas that you straight men love and covet and need and chase after and use to feel powerful and want so fucking badly (you’ll just take them if you have to) are the same ones you mock and demean for their shape and taste and texture and smell. Don’t think that we didn’t grow up being told they were shameful and embarrassing unless they were loved by straight men. We live with that every fucking day. So if the next generation of girls grows up to think there is nothing wrong with their vaginas because at the march people wore pussy hats and had anatomically correct drawings and hell, dressed up like them and instead they think their vaginas are beautiful and natural and wonderful and powerful then this march accomplished something goddamn groundbreaking.

pig

Even the earth made an appearance!

earth

class

 

altright

In case you can’t read that top one it says, “Alt-righters: Call your Dad, You’re in a cult!”

ovary

rule

And one of my favorite quotes ever…..

storm

We are the storm.

It was a really good day. Easily the best I have felt since the election and it mattered so much to see this groundswell of women, all over the world. Including ANTARCTICA!

womenantarctic

Look at us! We did this!

Me and you and you and you.

We did this.

And we need to keep doing this. Every day. We need to stay vigilant and protest. We need to support BLM and NoDAPL and Immigrants and the Disabled and Diseased. We need to call our reps. We need to support real news. He is coming for all of us. Never forget that.

april-daniels-calaprildaniels-first-they-came-for-the-muslims-and-7285635

This is what feminism looks like:

So in honor of this and this historic march and our giant Pussy Fight, I’m changing my sign off slogan. I used to always say “Peace, love and starbursts” and while I still love all those things, times like this call for a little bit more.

chins-up

Resist, my friends. Always.

 

Chins up, Claws Out,

Ally

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Day Zero: Shipwrecked in TrumpLand

19 Jan

And here we are…

I watched some footage of Michelle Obama taking her last walk through the White House. Insta-tears.

I told my husband this morning that even if Hillary had won, I would still be mourning the loss of MY President.

Regardless, here we are. So where are we?

Well we did a little protesting this weekend. My Brooklyn neighborhood is incredibly diverse (like nearly every New York City neighborhood) and predominately Arabic. I love my neighborhood. So when I saw that they were holding a pro-Immigration rally and march, I headed over.

protest1

Seriously this family wins twice – one for the Not My Tsar and the other for the kid’s finger painting protest poster.

protest2

 

protest3

protest4

This isn’t the best example of the magnitude of the crowd but you get the gist. The whole time cars were honking and people were cheering because….

april-daniels-calaprildaniels-first-they-came-for-the-muslims-and-7285635

Not this time, indeed. This was a nice primer for Saturday, The Women’s March on Washington which, in all honesty, I think might be the most historically important thing I have ever done in my life. I’m proud to be there, with my friends, to stand up and be counted.

It’s going to be a long four years. We need to protest. We need to call our reps. We need to be vigilant. And we need to keep making art because Art Is Resistance.

As many of you know, my husband, John Grochalski kept a poetry blog posting a poem a day for nearly a decade. He retired that blog this fall but then, when Trump was elected, decided to bring it back only this time it wasn’t just his writing – it was for all of us.

He’s going to be posting something every day of the Trump Administration (read: Trumpocalypse). That’s 1, 460 days. So, my artist friends – please submit to winedrunksidewalk@gmail.com

Also it doesn’t have to be Trump specific but could also be observations on our life in these terrifying times. Any kind of art accepted – poems, stories, rants, novel excerpts, music, photos, paintings, digital art, stuff your cat does at night, whatever you consider to be art, is what you send.

We’re going to work together to RESIST what is happening.

Artists, get on your motherfucking marks.

Get set.

Go!

So to kick off this blog, today John posted his first piece. It’s very dear to my heart and penned by a man in my life who taught me the power of empathy, the importance of listening instead of speaking, and, as an immigrant, the lasting impact of courage.

Here is the letter that my father, or as we like to call him, Big Ron, wrote to me on my sisters days after the election, when everything felt so raw and helpless. Thank you for being there for us. Thank you for being you. And I too hope you get to see a Madam President.

(And congrats on your first publication!)

And to hear more about what John is doing with his blog, check out his interview on Talk with ME and his artist’s statement on his blog. Again if you want to submit, (winedrunksidewalk@gmail.com) do it! We need to stick together.

Remember that scene in Apollo 13 where they had to slingshot around the moon and they were going to go radio dark and no one in Houston knew if they would make it?

Yeah.

Yeah…..

See you kids on the other side.

Peace, love and starbursts,

Ally

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