LOS ANGELES — Demonstrators from Los Angeles to New York marched in support of female empowerment and denounced President Donald Trump’s views on immigration, abortion, LGBT rights and women’s rights on Saturday, the anniversary of his inauguration.
In Los Angeles, Eva Longoria, Natalie Portman, Viola Davis, Alfre Woodard, Scarlett Johansson, Constance Wu, Adam Scott and Rob Reiner were among the celebrities who addressed a crowd of hundreds of thousands of demonstrators at a women’s march.
Longoria, who starred in TV’s “Desperate Housewives,” told marchers their presence matters, “especially when those in power seem to have turned their backs on reason and justice.”
Portman, an Academy Award winner, talked about feeling sexualized by the entertainment industry from the time her first film, “Leon: The Professional,” was released when she was 13 and suggested it’s time for “a revolution of desire.” In the 1994 film, Portman played a young girl taken in by a hit man after her family is killed.
Woodard urged everyone to register and vote, saying, “the 2018 midterms start now.” And Davis spoke with the passion of a preacher as she discussed the nation’s history of discrimination and her past as a sexual assault survivor.
Marches spread throughout nation
People marched in Casper, Wyoming, and Cambridge, Massachusetts, and in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and Houston. More marches were planned in cities on Sunday.
In Park City, Utah, where the annual Sundance Film Festival is in full swing, actress Jane Fonda and nationally known attorney Gloria Allred joined the women’s march.
In Morristown, New Jersey, that state’s new first lady told a crowd she was a victim of sexual violence while attending college.
Tammy Murphy, the wife of Democrat Phil Murphy, said the attack occurred while she was a sophomore at the University of Virginia. She said she was walking along a path when a man grabbed her and pulled her into some bushes. She said the man tried to take her clothes off and put a crab apple in her mouth to silence her but she bit his hand and fled half-dressed to a nearby fraternity house, where students called police.
The 2017 rally in Washington, D.C., and hundreds of similar marches created solidarity for those opposing Trump’s views, words and actions. Millions of people around the world marched during last year’s rallies, and many on Saturday talked about the news avalanche of politics and gender issues in the past year.
Critics of the weekend’s marches said the demonstrations were really a protest against Trump.
Meanwhile, Trump on Saturday tweeted that it was a “perfect day” for women to march to celebrate the “economic success and wealth creation” that’s happened during his first year in office.
“Get out there now to celebrate the historic milestones and unprecedented economic success and wealth creation that has taken place over the last 12 months,” the Republican wrote. “Lowest female unemployment in 18 years!”
Beautiful weather all over our great country, a perfect day for all Women to March. Get out there now to celebrate the historic milestones and unprecedented economic success and wealth creation that has taken place over the last 12 months. Lowest female unemployment in 18 years!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 20, 2018
March coming to Las Vegas on Sunday
This weekend marks the one-year anniversary of the Women’s March, which drew more than 2 million participants around the world.
Las Vegas will host a rally on Sunday — the official anniversary of the march — to kick off a nationwide voter registration tour dubbed #PowerToThePolls.
The event will open its doors at 10 a.m. at Sam Boyd Stadium in east Las Vegas.