After many years of planning to go and missing out, I finally made it to SF Women Against Rape‘s annual Walk Against Rape. It was very sweet – we had pastries, and made posters, I saw a few people I knew, we listened to poetry ( missed the poet’s name), speeches, and Susana y su Orquestra Adelante, then assembled in the street for a 2 mile march from the Women’s Building down to 16th and Mission, to 24th and Mission, then down 24th a few blocks & back again.
Before the march started I took it on myself to block off the side street where cars were still coming through – taking with me some handy folks including a large, kindly man obsessed with talking about his motorcycle who I felt would answer my call of punk sisterhood and several charming Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence one of whom I turned out to know. We turned back some cars and after a while a motorcycle cop showed up to do the honors. Back to the gathering march – I got up front with the banner holders. It is easier for me to be at the front or the back, so why not the front where I can represent for my wheely fellow survivors. I chanted the chants and waved at people and held up part of the banner for a while. The band (who reminded me of the stanford marching band – goofy awesome outfits) was great. Nothing like a marching band!!!! I love them!
Unpleasant aspects of the march: we were herded into one lane of the street by cops and they were just unpleasantly close to us much of the time. And, the kinda creepy dude with the nose ring and the replacements hoodie who followed the march the entire way filming it. I have actually had this same guy in my face before at the dyke march and I have a feeling I kind of know him like he is a friend of a friend (or an acquaintance). It takes a special kind of tacky to be a guy filming a march of mostly young women in this way. Not as a comrade, not in support, but for what? Stock photos? Weird fetish? Thinks he’s the documentarian of the revolution? Dunno. I ran him off a couple of times by staring him down and filming him back and one of the march organizers also got him to quit going right smack in front of us (though he just came right back). There was also a young man, high school or early college, who i thought maybe was doing an actual photojournalism assignment and he was not very good at whatever he was trying to do but at least he didn’t give off the massive creepster vibes of Mr. Descendents Hoodie.
So I spent a lot of the march with a huge crowd of mostly women at my back, staring down the cameraman and staring at some cop’s ass, gun, taser, and well worn nightstick. Typical….
The nice bits other than the people marching with, my friend Z showed up and handed out adorable “take no bullshit” stickers was one good thing; another was that many many people come out to see the march, to wave, honk in support, or just fall in and join us. That’s a really nice feeling.
SFWAR is a great organization that does good work, please donate to support them! Or, donate to an anti-rape or anti-domestic violence nonprofit near you — pick a small local one that supports your own community!!!