As a writer I feel obligated to post some thought-provoking and heartfelt prose about what it meant to participate in the Women’s March of Alabama in Birmingham yesterday. But I’m honestly at a loss for words.

I can’t tell you how humbling yet empowering it felt to walk down the same streets that men, women, and children marched down in the 1960s so that people with skin like mine would have the right to vote – for real – and would have better access to education and jobs. The foot soldiers of the civil rights movement risked their lives, some lost their lives, so I could have the life I do today. I thought of them with every step I took down those Magic City streets.

I can’t tell you how special it was to march yesterday with my husband, some of my students, and some of the women of See Jane Write by my side.

Sharing the Women’s March of Alabama in Birmingham with my students meant the world to me.

But I can tell you why it was important for me to march yesterday. I marched for my husband, my students, and the women of See Jane Write who were by my side.

Feminist husbands do it better.

I marched because black lives matter and no woman married to a black man or raising a black man should have to worry about his life being taken by the very people sworn to protect it.

My students are why I march.

I marched for the girls in my classroom and the girls around the world who deserve every chance to become the women they dream of one day being. I marched because girls deserve to be treated with respect, to be recognized as more than a pretty face or a number on a scale. I marched because women and girls deserve to be trusted, to be believed.

Photo courtesy of Artney Walker of My Pretty Brown Fit

I marched for women and girls who want their voices to be heard.

I marched for women and girls who want to be the authors of their own lives.

I marched for myself.

I marched for you.

More moments from Women’s March Alabama in Birmingham: 

Crossposted at

4 Comments on Why I March

  1. Hanna Schock
    January 24, 2017 at 5:04 am (11 months ago)

    Javacia, I loved this! Thank you! I was there on Saturday. I also thought of the civil rights marches in the 1960s. Those girls and boys, men and women, taught me, a little white Alabama girl, how to expect more from our country. Their courageous protesting benefited us all. I am a better woman because of the children, women, and men of color who I call friends. I am becoming a better woman and American citizen every time I dare to listen to diverse experiences and opinions respectfully, ready to learn what I do not yet know. Julianna’s declaration after marching in San Francisco on Saturday said why we marched much better than I can here. I hope you read it because you, as her teacher and with this great work you do, have helped raise my daughter to be the fierce young woman she is. Thank you for that too!

    • javacia
      January 31, 2017 at 5:29 am (11 months ago)

      Hanna, thank you for reading my post, for such a heartfelt comment and for seeing the value of diversity.

      I didn’t see Julianna’s post, but I would love to read it. Please share if you can. I am very proud of her for all she’s doing and for the young woman she has become!

  2. Candice
    January 24, 2017 at 9:11 am (11 months ago)

    Love it!

    • javacia
      January 31, 2017 at 5:26 am (11 months ago)

      Thanks for reading!


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