- Associated Press - Saturday, January 21, 2017

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) - Several thousand people packed the War Memorial in Trenton on Saturday to show their solidarity with hundreds of thousands demonstrating in Washington for the Women’s March.

The diverse crowd cheered loudly as several speakers urged them to back equal rights for all people and to fight what they called the “un-American” agenda of President Donald Trump. The crowd, estimated at 6,000 people, also was urged to remain involved in community rallies and similar events in the coming months to show their unity and the strengths of their beliefs.

Holding a handmade sign that read “Girls just want to have fundamental rights,” Mary Morrisey, 35, of Trenton, said she attended the march to show her support for America and its people.

“We may go about things differently, but we all want the same thing - life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” she said.

Morrisey said she didn’t mind standing out in the chilly, damp conditions because this was an opportunity to make things better for people across the nation, especially LGBT people and minorities. She said she had already met a “few new friends” who were planning to start an online group to spread the word about what can be done in the future.

Sarah Gospodar, 53, of Ewing, likened the rally to the civil rights marches of the 1960s, when people came together peacefully to effect change.

“As a middle-aged black woman, I’ve seen a lot in my life, things that divided this country and things that united it. And these issues we address today are things that should unite us. How can anyone be against equal pay and fair and equal rights for all Americans?” she asked. “Showing strength doesn’t mean violence, it means standing up for your beliefs while respecting others’ beliefs.”

Gospodar admitted she’s no fan of Trump, but said she will give him the chance to “show he really does want to make America great.”

The event concluded with a vocal march to the nearby New Jersey Statehouse, where speakers again urged participants to stay strong and vigilant to make sure their voices are heard. Authorities reported no disturbances or arrests.

Similar marches were also being held in several other areas of New Jersey on Saturday, including Asbury Park, Mount Laurel, Pompton Plains, Westfield and Wyckoff.

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