Despite Divisions, Women Marched on January 19 Activists turned out on Central Park West, in Foley Square, at Grand Central
“Human Beings” from Gays Against Guns represent women lost to gun violence.
Hannah Simpson, a Jewish transgender woman, was among the speakers on Central Park West.
Congressmember Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez spoke to the Women’s March Alliance crowd on Central Park West.
Bryan Cranston, star of “Network,” stands on a window ledge at the Belasco Theater, to greet marchers as they were winding up.
Gays Against Guns marching on January 19 on the West Side of Manhattan.
The Workmen’s Circle, one of the oldest Jewish philanthropic groups in New York, joined the Women’s March Alliance event.
PHOTO ESSAY BY DONNA ACETO STORY BY PAUL SCHINDLER
wo years after women and their allies in untold numbers turned out the day following Donald Trump’s inauguration to protest the new president, Women’s Marches were once again staged in numerous cities on January 19. As is not unheard of in protest movements, this year’s events were marred by internal divisions — in New York, specifically, competing charges of anti-Semitism and non-inclusiveness. The Women’s March Alliance, which has produced the New York event since 2017 and is not formally aligned with the Women’s March held in Washington, held a brief rally on Central Park West before marching from West 62nd Street to the West 40s. Leaders from the DC event, including Linda Sarsour and Tamika Mallory, had approached the Women’s March Alliance last year to forge a relationship, but Alliance organizers voiced discomfort with Sarsour’s endorsement of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions aimed at Israel and, more importantly, with Mallory’s unwillingness to personally condemn Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan, even though she has called out that organization’s anti-Semitic and homophobic history. The Alliance, in turn, was criticized for what critics said was a lack of inclusivity of women of color. When talks between the two groups failed to make headway, a separate Women’s March NYC was planned for Foley Square downtown. GayCityNews.nyc | January 31 - February 13, 2019
Rise and Resist organizers disability advocates at Grand Central Terminal.
Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum, the leader of Congregation Beit Simchat Torah, the city’s LGBTQ synagogue, was among a group of nine prominent rabbis who engaged in a lengthy process of dialogue with Sarsour and Mallory. While the rabbis, in a written statement, said, “We have not resolved our differences,” they also argued that “divisions between Jews and People of Color only serve to further the aims of white supremacists and their enablers, and to erase the strong presence in our Jewish communities of Jews of Color.” The group went on to say, “We encourage members of the Jewish community to participate in the Women’s March on 1/19/19. In Washington, DC, and New York City, there are contingents of Jews marching together, and those who wish to express Jewish pride and solidarity may wish to join them.” In a Facebook post, however, Kleinbaum elaborated, “CBST is not endorsing or formally participating in” either of the New York events and that for her the important goal is to “find a way to build toward the day after” the two gatherings. The Women’s March Alliance event on Central
Support for transgender rights and transgender women was one theme in the January 19 march.
Park drew the larger crowd, with Congressmember Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez the highest profile speaker in a brief pre-march program. Ocasio-Cortez also spoke at the Women’s March NYC, and was joined there by other prominent women including Gloria Steinem, Kleinbaum, and her wife, teachers’ union leader Randi Weingarten. The direct action group Rise and Resist, unhappy with the Women’s March Alliance’s commitment to disability access, hosted a third event on Saturday at Grand Central Terminal, timing it for the afternoon so that its members could also participate in the morning rally that Women’s March NYC held in Foley Square. Gays Against Guns, ever seeking to raise the visibility of the gun regulation issue, fielded contingents in all three events.
January 31, 2019