So many Goddard students and faculty participated in the January 21st Women’s March in marches across the country. This series highlights some of those marches. Here’s accounts of the Montpelier, Vermont march by students Tracy Murphy and Stefania Patinella.
I had the opportunity to join an estimated 15,000 people in Montpelier, Vermont, for the Women’s March and unity rally at the statehouse. Among these people were students in the undergraduate education program at Goddard, who lovingly welcomed me to march and rally with them. The Goddard family and inclusive nature spreads across residencies, I learned.
We hollered together. We laughed together. We wiped away tears together. The energy was warm and passionate, and the crowd erupted with thunderous cheer when senator Bernie Sanders made a surprise entrance and speech. I was also blown away by incredible slam poetry performed by Muslim Girls Making Change. It was a sea of love, unity, and pink pussyhats, of which I knit twelve. It’s a day I hope never to forget.
~ Tracy Murphy, Individualized MA student in Transformative Language Arts
I went to the march in Montpelier at the state capitol building. Reports say that between 6,000-10,0000 people were there. The population of Montpelier is about 8,000 and on a hoppin’ day you see maybe 100 of them in town so it was quite a sight.
The crowd was upwards of 95% white ‘cause that’s Vermont. But the podium at least was occupied by women of color for much-to-most of the time–we heard songs from Nicole Nelson, from the band Dwight and Nicole; a talk from Ebony Nyoni, who founded Black Live Matter Vermont; and–by far my favorite– poetry from Muslim Girls Making Change, a slam poetry team of four Burlington teens. They knocked my little pink socks off. How can I explain this? Their voices were pain and grit and strength and fabulousness–art at its best, with words that reach right into your heart and give it a ruthless squeeze, and a healthy does of fuck-you.
There were tons of pink pussy hats. Bearded guys standing around in flannels, drinking coffee, with hand-knitted pink pussy hats on their heads; little kids in strollers with hand-drawn signs about pussies (I wonder if they think this protest is about kittens). And many, many women with pink pussy hats on their heads and signs about their own precious pussies in their hands. Even my hard shell of cynicism had to hoot in admiration– pussies as an open rallying cry! Pretty great.
~ Stefania Patinella, Health Arts and Sciences student