Undoubtedly, we’re all familiar with the backlash against the current President that spans all the way back to June 16, 2015, when Donald Trump announced his candidacy for President of the United States.
Mr. Trump seemed to offend nearly everyone from that day he rode down to escalator in Trump Tower to make his announcement. From the start, he caused outrage when he referred to Mexicans as “rapists and drug dealers.” It only got worse from there. Scandals spanned from his calls for a ban on all Muslims entering the country, to his infamous comments about sexual assault that he made on a Hollywood Access bus.
The incident on the bus seemed to be the spark that caused the women of the country to start to actually organize a movement against Mr. Trump.
That movement quickly developed into an organized Women’s March. The Women’s March was one of the most widely coordinated protest efforts in history. Demonstrations against Donald Trump took place on January 21, 2017 on all seven continents, including Antarctica, where a group of scientists took the time to protest against the new President.
Though the official March was technically only scheduled to take place in Washington D.C., the fact that the message of this movement was spread around the world and about 3 million people joined together to send a single message, might make the Women’s March one of the most effective examples of successful rhetoric to date.
In part, this is due to the fact that Trump offended nearly every major race, religion, ethnicity, and sexual orientation over the course of his candidacy. Nearly everyone was affected, or knew someone who was affected by the comments and policies of the President.
Millions of people have a personal connection to the message of protest against Trump. Because of that widespread connection, the organizers of the Women’s March were able to capitalize on the emotional connection, or ethos, that people had to the movement.
Additionally, the timing of the March couldn’t have been better. The organizers were cognizant of the fact that people would be spurred to action by the images of Donald Trump being sworn in as the President. The Women’s March understood the idea of kairos, or timing, or their message. They planned their movement to directly follow the inauguration of Donald Trump because they knew that around the globe, people would have an emotional reaction to the events of the day before, and want to do something.
They spread their message, and people came from not only around the country, but around the entire world, to show their support for the women and other marginalized groups that President Trump has targeted.
Possibly the biggest indicator of the organizers’ success was the enormity of their movement. While the inauguration the day before was estimated to have 150,000-200,000 people, the women’s March brought 500,000-600,000 people just to Washington D.C., and there were dozens of other enormous crowds around the world.
While the effects of the March might be called into question by some, it’s abundantly clear that the organizers of the Women’s March nailed the concept of persuasive rhetoric.