ATLANTA - Atlanta police said an estimated 60,000 people participated in a march through downtown Atlanta on Saturday.
The Atlanta March for Social Justice & Women was billed as a peaceful demonstration of solidarity with members of underrepresented communities and women's issues in Georgia.
The march started at 1 p.m. at the Center for Civil and Human Rights on Ivan Allen Jr. before wrapping up around 5 p.m. at the Georgia State Capitol on Washington Street.
Georgia congressman and civil rights leader John Lewis attended the march, firing up the crowd with a speech before leading the way on the march.
“I’m fired up! I’m ready to march! I have on my marching shoes. Let’s do it!” Lewis said to the crowd.
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Just one day after the inauguration of President Donald Trump, marchers said they wanted to send a strong message to the new administration in Washington, D.C.
“I think it’s important to continue to speak out against it and not fall into a level complacency,” marcher Caitlin Lowery said.
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Police said the march was peaceful and without incident.
The march in Atlanta was just one of several demonstrations across the country and across the world.
Hundreds of thousands of people descended upon the nation’s capital to participate in the Women’s March.
The march was billed by organizers as a nonpartisan opportunity for people to “stand together in solidarity with our partners and children for the protection of our rights, our safety, our health, and our families -- recognizing that our vibrant and diverse communities are the strength of our country.”
Organizers said one of the goals of the march is to tell the new administration that on Day 1, “women's rights are human rights.” Despite the name of the event, leaders have made clear that all were welcome to join, not just women.
More than 500,000 people filled the National Mall and flooded the streets of Washington, D.C.
Channel 2’s Justin Gray spoke to marchers who traveled to Washington from Decatur.
“We want our voices to be heard, that we don’t want to be forgotten, that we want our lawmakers to pay attention to all of us,” Rhonda Wilcox said.
With the event happening on the new president’s first full day in the White House, critics contend the march is a protest against Trump’s presidency, particularly as organizations that opposed the president-elect’s campaign joined as partners. The ACLU, Amnesty International, Emily’s List, Planned Parenthood, GLAAD and the Muslim Women’s Alliance all signed on as the event grew in size.
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