On Friday afternoon, January 20th, I will climb on board a bus in Melbourne, Florida, that will carry me and my fellow riders all through the night to Washington, DC. We’ll be dropped off the next morning at RFK stadium, and from there a Metro ride and a short walk will take us to the corner of Independence Avenue and 3rd St. SW—right in front of the U.S. Capitol. A three hour rally is planned there, followed by a march west down Independence. That evening I’ll board the same bus and ride all night back home to Florida.
Almost immediately after the March was first announced, I knew I’d be going. Here’s why:
I am going for my daughters. And for all daughters, granddaughters, grandmothers, sisters, aunts, nieces, and cousins . . . for all girls and women of this beloved country and amazing planet. Being there is how I say to them/us/me: You are worthy of love, ultimate respect, justice and a fair chance to give your gift and live a good life. Being there is how I say I love you and how much your well-being matters to me. I go for the whole community of women, to carry you with me, and to lift up your hopes, dreams and prayers into the Washington sky and for the higher consciousness of our citizenry.
I am also going for my son, my grandsons, and all the sons, grandsons, brothers, fathers, grandfathers, uncles, nephews and cousins . . . for all the boys and men of this blessed country and cherished planet. Being there is how I say: You too are worthy of love, respect and freedom . . . especially the freedom to live and love without the ancient, patriarchal, cultural pressure to be aggressive when you feel powerless, arrogant instead of humble, angry when you’re hurt, tough when you want to be open, and separate when you want to connect. I am going to apologize for sending you to war, and to promise to keep working for peace . . . for as along as it takes.
I am also because I love sex. (Yes, I did just write that.) I love sex as a profound and exalted expression of love between human beings. Between men and women, men and men, women and women. I love sex as a way to honor and adore each other, to give to and receive from the Beloved, to let God move through us in celebration of the holy gift of a body, a relationship, a life. Our culture has let this incredible gift be used to debase, abuse, subjugate, intimidate, and shame us, especially the most vulnerable among us. I go to our nation’s capital for those who carry those wounds. I march to reclaim the sanctity, joy, beauty and transformative power of sex.
I go as well for the reasons that I will only discover upon being there, returning home and integrating the journey into my life. And I go because it will be fun. Cold and exhausting, yes, but fun. It is a road trip, after all, and with this many freedom-loving women in one place, I know there will be dancing. And as Emma Goldman said, “If I can’t dance, it’s not my revolution.”
Finally, most essentially, I go for love’s sake—because I can’t get Dr. King’s words out my head: “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” I’m on the bus because I love this country and its people so much—and if only love can solve the problems that hate creates—then let me descend on Washington fully armed with the power of love, and deeply committed to extending it . . . every step of the way.