Today, January 20th, commemorates Martin Luther King's historic march on Washington in August 1963 to declare freedom from discrimination for African Americans.
The march to express freedom has been emblazoned in our memories. Thousands of years ago, Moses declared to Pharoah, "Let my people go!" Moses then led the Jewish people as they walked to their freedom from slavery in Egypt. In more recent memory, on December 1987, thousands of American Jews marched on Washington during Ronald Reagan's summit with Mikhail Gorbachev of Russia to declare once again, "Let my people go!"
The march to freedom is an act of unity and purpose. It is a breaking of bonds, a severing of chains that imprison a person in physical and/or mental slavery. It requires overcoming societal or cultural mores to be still and do nothing. It demands courage.
Women who are victims of abuse or discrimination likewise require much strength and courage to seek freedom. All over the world women are regularly harassed, abused and mistreated; preteens coerced into unwanted sexual acts or marriage; and young girls forbidden to receive an elementary level of education. These women, with unbelievable audacity, are facing danger and death when they decide to march - or drive cars, as forbidden to them - and declare, "Let us be free!"
These women, like their predecessors, have joined the March to Freedom.