Whether you marched or not, and whether you supported the politics or not, the Women’s March Los Angeles on Saturday was an undeniably huge event, attracting what estimates said were as many as 750,000 demonstrators who filled the streets for many blocks between Pershing Square and Grand Park on a crisp, sunny day to support women’s rights and causes. The crowds, both here and in more than 600 cities around the globe (there was even one in Antarctica), were also – in keeping with the requests of the organizers – very peaceful. Not a single arrest was reported in either Los Angeles or Washington, D.C., the two largest sites…and at least one now-viral video shows marchers and police giving each other happy high fives in Atlanta.
In L.A., too, the mood was relaxed and upbeat, with crowds waiting patiently at the Pershing Square starting point, even though movement up the streets began at least half an hour after the stated 10 a.m. starting time. One minor glitch was that the sheer number of participants overwhelmed Metro buses and trains (some folks in Santa Monica reported waiting two hours for a train with room to ride, before finally giving up).
The throngs of people also provided an interesting test – according to L. A. Times architecture writer Christopher Hawthorne – of downtown’s public spaces and how successful they were (or weren’t) at facilitating crowd flow during such a major event.
But more than anything, the event was safe, peaceful, colorful, diverse and family-friendly, whether people marched, rallied, roamed or just watched. It was also filled with signs (“Signs, signs, everywhere there’s signs…”) and many great images…some of which we share below.