The Eastern New Mexico News - Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

Women's march 'important'

Portales hosts second annual event; the first happened full year ago.


January 21, 2018

Jamie Cushman

Women's rights, Puerto Rico and social insurance programs were among the issues marchers held up signs in support of at the High Plains New Mexico Women's Anniversary March outside the Roosevelt County Courthouse on Saturday.

PORTALES — It's been a full year since millions of women around the country and the world took to the streets to protest for women's rights and clearly women still have something to say.

Portales was among the hundreds of locations across the globe to once again host a women's march on Saturday as about 40 people gathered outside the Roosevelt County Courthouse around noon for the High Plains New Mexico Women's Anniversary March.

"For me, this kind of march, speaking out, getting people to vote is really important because what we need to understand is as Americans what affects some of us, affects all of us," organizer Valerie Shines Warmly Pacini said. "When we get stuck in these divided politics based on perceived differences like somehow somebody's color is a defining characteristic, we lose sight of the fact that really we all count or nobody counts."

For over an hour participants listened to speakers and marched around the courthouse holding up signs showing their support for women's rights and other issues like DACA, health care and Puerto Rico, in addition to several signs showing their lack of support for President Trump.

"It's all important, it needs to all be brought together because women are a part of all of those issues," organizer Geni Flores said.

"It's important to stand up for things you believe in, whatever they happen to be," Carol Singletary said. "Last year it was a real focus on women's issues but there's so many more things that we're concerned about this year."

One of the themes for this year's march was "Power to the Polls" as organizers and participants seek to elect more women to public office.

"This year I watched a meeting of [President Trump] and his cabinet talking about women's health care, there wasn't one woman there," organizer Linda Sumption said. "We do have women in political positions but we need more and I can't help but think if we elect more women up and down the line in terms of local, state and national that the country's going to be better off."

Several men were in attendance at Saturday's march in Portales to show that not just women care about women's rights.

"I've got two daughters, five granddaughters, two great-granddaughters and I've been a feminist since 1969," Gene Bundy said. "I don't see how any man who has a wife and daughters can't be a feminist and can say it's just fine to have a bunch of old white men in Washington, D.C., tell my wife, my daughter, my granddaughters what to do with their body. It's just not right."

With the second march now in the books, organizers are showing no signs of slowing down.

"It's the second year that we've done this and we're going to keep doing it as long as we need to," Sumption said.


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