More than half a million people turned out Saturday morning in downtown L.A. for the Women’s March Los Angeles, which drew celebrity speakers including Miley Cyrus, Jane Fonda, Barbra Streisand and Natalie Portman.
The Los Angeles Times said that by afternoon it appeared to be as large as the 2006 immigration rights march that was one of L.A.’s biggest demonstrations ever. The Women’s March organizers put the crowd at a massive 750,000 marchers. Public transportation became overwhelmed as many people waited hours to get on Metro trains and buses, and restaurants were jam-packed. The Women’s Marches held in Washington, D.C., New York, Park City and around the world totaled several million people.
Speakers and performers at stages in Pershing Square and at City Hall also included mayor Eric Garcetti, Laverne Cox, Kerry Washington, Juliette Lewis, and Lily Tomlin, with Rufus Wainwright singing “Hallelujah.” Kesha, Mandy Moore, Jessica Biel, Vanessa Hudgens, Marcia Gay Harden, Jodie Sweetin, and Helen Hunt were also there to show their support.
“Today we speak out, but tomorrow we act out,” mayor Garcetti told the crowd.
Actress Alexandra Paul said she preferred to be in the street with the marchers rather than sequestered in the VIP area. “I’m here to support the progressive agenda,” she said.
On Friday, just after Donald Trump’s inauguration, a smaller demonstration took place near L.A. Live, but the pleasant weather and Saturday timing gave a much bigger boost to the Women’s March.
Most marchers were far away from the stages and many weren’t able to follow the designated route, instead branching out onto side streets and turning surrounding areas such as Grand Park into a giant block party.
— Women's March LA (@wmnsmarchla) January 21, 2017
Many participants got creative with signs festooned with clever ripostes, knitted pink pussy hats, and costumes, such as a group of “Game of Thrones” themed protesters. The Writers Guild of America, West was among organizations handing out customizable Women’s March signs. Despite the massive size, the march appeared to be peaceful with no incidents reported.