We Are America

Voices of the Nation's Future

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Photo ofAda Cowan

As I made the last stroke with my marker inside the big bubble letter R, I thought to myself, This day is going to be legendary. I threw my shoes on and headed out the door with the rest of my family members & friends, and we were on our way to the Women’s March on Washington of 2017. I had been thinking about this day for months; just walking down the street where everyone could see what we were about to do made me feel like I was finally being noticed, like everyone who saw us was thinking, Dang, they’re standing up for what they believe in.

After the march started, we walked for what I’m pretty sure were hours, trooping all over the place and letting everyone know how we felt. My legs were tired and my feet hurt like crazy and I really needed something to eat, but what motivated me to keep going was everyone around me; they were all chanting together, generating such a big wave of energy, as if to show that we were all united. It really was an incredible thing. 

At one point in the rally, we saw a huge truck with a bunch of people on the back with a bunch of Trump merchandise all over it. I don’t really remember if they were saying anything to us, but they certainly didn’t look too happy. I just thought it was funny, because they were such a small group compared to over 470,000 that were all protesting, and it made me feel like we all were really speaking out, as if to say, “That’s tough for you guys, it’s our time to shine today.” 

Meanwhile, all throughout the day, people were hyping me and my sign up - it was definitely an original, which is for sure one of the reasons why I think I got so much positivity for it. It was a big posterboard sign, and in giant bubble letters, it read, “My best friend is Muslim - I’ll register with her!” I remember this one time, I was walking past a group of people, and this woman who looked in her early 20s must have read my sign before I passed them, because as I was walking by, she said to me, “You go, girl.” I smiled at her and it made me feel really good, especially because I was getting direct attention for an idea of my own. I know that sounds selfish, but that day really was like something out of a movie for me. I had never done something like that before, gone out with such an enormous group of people to express our opinion so loudly and noticeably. For the rest of the day, I walked with confidence. I really felt like I was making a statement for once, like a message I was putting out into the world was important.

© Ada Cowan. All rights reserved. If you are interested in quoting this story, contact the national team through this website and we can put you in touch with the young person's teacher.