And I almost didn’t.
When a friend invited me to join her and her friends to the Women’s March in Chicago, I told her that I didn’t like big crowds. But then the night before I changed my mind and decided to join them. Why? Because I was wrong.
I used my introverted nature as an excuse to not participate in something I believe in and experience something in life. So I sucked it up, woke up at 6 a.m. the next morning and joined the group over to downtown Chicago where over 150,000 people showed up. (Now they’re saying it was an estimated 250,000 people.)
It was my first protest and I was a little nervous. However, I was surprised that the protest was very peaceful and everyone was really friendly. From the moment we got on the train, random people were saying hello to us. When people bumped into me they apologized. And the signs were amazing and creative.
Because I’m a minority. Because I am a first born generation American. Because I’ve been asked one too many times if I speak English. Because a professor in college humiliated me in front of the whole class by asking me if English is my second language. Because I’ve been told I don’t sound American. Because I’ve been told that I don’t look American. Because even if English was my second language and I didn’t “look” or “sound” American or not speak a word of English, it shouldn’t matter.
Because I am a woman. Because I have friends in the LGBTQ community and I love them. All of them.
Because refugees belong in America just as much as I do. Because immigrants are people, too. And Muslims have the right to practice their religion.
Because at a previous job, I had to report a male employee to HR for making me feel uncomfortable. Because just last week a former schoolmate randomly messaged me and started talking about masturbation (I wish I were kidding).
Because all of these issues is not just an American problem. It’s a worldwide problem.
Because it’s my body and my choice.
Because we deserve equality in all things. And because we live in inequality.
Because I am a nasty woman.
P.S. Listen to America Ferrera’s speech in Washington, D.C.