When you’re in a crowd of 750,000 women (and non-women) it is impossible to get a good overview (or good photos). I was proud to stand, and march, and chant with all of them. And I was proud of how Los Angeles, as a city, handled the event. To honor the overwhelming success of the march, and with the help of social media, I want to share a few of my favorite scenes and views of the event.
But first, I feel compelled to correct the record on a couple points. Immediately following the event, the Los Angeles Times architecture critic Christopher Hawthorne posted an article giving “low marks” to Pershing Square and LA Metro for their performance during the protests. The design of Pershing Square is popular punching bag here in Los Angeles (and a repeated topic of interest of mine), but the design had nothing to do with the bottlenecks of the protest on Saturday. As the photo below shows, the vast majority of the square was closed off to the march (possibly because the holiday ice rink was still being dismantled). Had the square been open to the protest, it would have served as a much more effective gathering point. But there is no single space in Downtown Los Angeles capable of holding 750,000 people at one time (no, not even Grand Park, Mr. Hawthorne). As for Metro, there are no official ridership numbers yet, but the average weekday ridership for Metro Rail is 359,861, so if only a quarter of the estimated attendees took Metro trains roundtrip it would have exceeded that average (not to mention riders who were not attending the march). And almost everyone was trying to get to the same place at the same time. (UPDATE: On Tuesday, Metro released a ridership estimate indicating that 592,000 people rode Metro trains on Saturday, more than double the average Saturday ridership, and 64% greater than the average weekday ridership.) LA Metro’s rail system is nowhere near as extensive as the New York City subway, or Washington Metro, or BART, but any transit system would struggle to accommodate a ridership surge on that scale. So let’s just keep those facts in mind when we talk about the march, because we already have enough fake news in this world. All things considered, Los Angeles performed beautifully for an event that wildly exceeded all attendance expectations.
And now on to the inspiring images.
Hundreds of thousands at #womensmarchla from @gaydayslosangeles. . . . . . . . . #LA_Movement #DTLA #LosAngeles #DiscoverLA #DowntownLA #Losangeles_LA #Conquer_LA #LAStory #LA #CNN #Sky_Hight_Architecture #MoodyGrams #Way2ill #VisualArchitects #ExploreToCreate #TheCreatorClass #HeaterCentral #CityLimitless #AgameOfTones #TheGreatTones #TheCreatorClass #FolkCreative #Intheheartofthecity #Jaw_Dropping_Shots #VisitCalifornia #Dtla_everyday #ABC7eyewitness @womensmarchla @womensmarch
The image below is probably one of the best crowd pictures of the whole day, and it still only captures a small portion of the total.
I chose this image for the message on the sign, but the caption is equally important (I believe it's referring to this).
And a few of my favorite photos that I took during the march: