Doylestown Rises Against Trump & Sexism as 1000+ Women & Students March on Courthouse

Hal Conte

Over 1000 women, students, and activists marched through Doylestown in the heart of Bucks County against Donald Trump and sexism in a local manifestation of a global series of Women’s Marches that took place on Jan. 20 and 21.
“I’m sick and tired of being sick and tired!” shouted Tayna Longino, one of the organizers of the march, held under the banner of a coalition titled Rise Up Doylestown. “We’re joined together tightly…showing our solidarity. I think we will win over a lot of the hatred and the negativity,” she added.
Newly elected Democratic councilwomen, LGBTQ+ students, Muslim women, and black activists denounced Trump and the direction of American society in a series of fiery speeches, expressing the view that the Republican government was depriving women and other marginalized demographics of a national say.
Banners and signs read, “One Race, Equal Rights,” “Be a Leader Not A Tweeter,” “Rise Up and Fight,” “Fake President, Real Racist,” and “We Know We’ve Seen It All Before,” among countless other slogans.
Along with “pussy hats,” the pink caps seen across the country in anti-Trump protests, some women were wearing hats depicting the president as an orange-haired turd.
The demonstrators included women of all ages, from those still in high school to veteran activists. Many families were also present. The protesters’ concerns were equally widespread, ranging from the administration’s legitimization of rape culture to Trump’s withdrawal from the Paris Climate Accord.
Asked why she was marching against Donald Trump, Marlene Pray, a local resident, said “Because our democracy is in trouble and our rights are being taken away, our Earth and people are suffering, and our voices need to be heard.”
Taylor Branch, a high school student from Central Bucks East, expressed her exasperation with the Trump presidency, which she characterized as bigoted and out of touch. She maintains that peaceful protest can put pressure on the government. “We can’t fight his hate with more hate,” she warned.
Eileen Reed, a grandmother, explained that she had been involved in the protests of the 1960s and 70s against sexism and the Vietnam War. She expressed optimism with the potential for change. “We have a lot of support for a lot of the issues,” she said, citing DACA, the executive order repealed by the Trump Administration that protected undocumented minors who entered the country from being deported.
“[Trump’s] isolationism is preventing a solution to the global problems caused by global warming and population,” April Ann Bohmler, a local artist, said.
She demanded that the federal government address “modifications to our laws around fossil fuels, changes in the way we prohibit chemicals, and more education around farming and sustainability.”
Many of the protesters in Doylestown were regular attendees of anti-Trump demonstrations. “We were at the Philly march yesterday, we were at an impeachment march over the summer,” said Connor Lamb. “I think he [Trump] is lying to the people.”
Debra West, who was accompanying Lamb, listed multiple reasons for her anger.
“My relatives died at the hands of Nazis. My family came to America so that they didn’t have to worry about being tortured and gassed in concentration camps by people who are not very fine people,” she said.
“For all women who were raped, assaulted, and basically disrespected for years by men… That’s why we march,” West added. “That’s why we will not give in or give up. Because we care!”
The organizing coalition was composed of a broad front of Democratic, Green Party, Democratic Socialist, reproductive rights, religious, anti-war, indigenous rights, feminist, and student groups. Several local businesses also displayed signs in support of the protests.
Along the side of the road near the Old Courthouse on East Court St., where the march, led by students, began, tables with petitions, anti-fracking pamphlets, and organizing tip sheets were set up.
“Our rights are in jeopardy,” concluded Kathy Truesdale, one of the women holding signs. “The voting must be protected. The rights of the voting public must be protected. The misogyny and attacks on women must be addressed.”