Rain and a palpable heaviness covered the Brett Kavanaugh and Dr. Christine Blasey Ford hearings last week. This afternoon, Cancel Kavanaugh: Believe Survivors marchers perspired under a hot sun while they shouted resistance to the Supreme Court nominee.
Participants started gathering before noon in front of the E. Barret Prettynam Federal Courthouse, judge Kavanaugh’s current court. Several thousand people joined, walking to the Supreme Court building, where judge Kavanaugh could ascend.
Organized by Women’s March, the ACLU, the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, and others, the protest also drew leaders like Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), who expressed anger for women silenced.
She stood by Linda Sarsour, national co-chair of the 2017 Women’s March and Palestinian-American activist, who wore a red headscarf and prompted marchers at the beginning of the rally to take water and remember their safety and power.
“Nonviolence is not passive,” she said. “You are part of a movement with people who are trained in nonviolence. Please ignore people who are going to try to intimidate you or even incite you into an argument or a physical fight.”
That’s not what they were there for, Sarsour said. They were there to speak out, to protest, and, for some, to engage in civil disobedience, risking arrest.
“I am a worker” declared some with their signs. “Lawyers against liars,” others read. A man in a white medical coat chanted “Whose courts?” from across the street, pumping his fist with the response: “Our courts!”
Deborah Harris, an organizer for Women’s March, said it’s her priority to galvanize all people – women and children, abused, allies, elected officials – to claim responsibility for one another. As a Christ-follower, she calls for a hard look at the truth, and not oppressive behaviors she says are done under the name of Christianity to oppress different communities.
“It’s affirming that our time is now to take up space, and we must do it now while we have the chance to do it,” Harris said.
Among the multitudes was Kimberly Jones, who flew from Anchorage, Alaska with hopes to meet her senators, Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) and Dan Sullivan (R-Alaska). She wanted to ask them to consider her young daughter, who she believes statistically doesn’t stand a chance of being safe from assault.
Hector Jairo-Martinez said he believes in chipping away at the things that separate God’s people. Elizabeth Alex of CASA In Action, an immigrant rights organization in the mid-Atlantic region, says it’s important to recognize people as whole people and faith communities are starting to step up with that message.
Lutheran pastors Emily Scott and Chris Schaefer from the Baltimore area said they use marches as prayers on feet, recognizing the streets as a place where justice speaks.
Sojourners asked them why they attended and what their goals were. Listen here for the report from the field. Listen to their responses below: