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Transportation

Mass Transit Mobilizes Women. Why Don't Women Mobilize for Transit?

Voting against transit might save some people tax dollars, but it hurts women of color the most.
Protesters pour out of a D.C. metro station to attend the Women's March on Washington on Saturday.
Protesters pour out of a D.C. metro station to attend the Women's March on Washington on Saturday. Serkan Gurbuz/AP Photo

In a jam-packed subway car, riders were singing protest songs. A woman passed around sacks of peanut M&M’s to settle fidgeting children. Pink knitted “pussy” hats spurred laughter between passengers who kept bumping heads.

Despite backed-up trains and hour-long waits, a sense of solidarity and purpose filled the D.C. Metro the morning of the Women’s March on Washington. A remarkable number of people did, too: By 11 a.m., the system registered 275,000 riders, eight times busier than a normal Saturday. By the end of the day, ridership surged past 1 million, just shy of an all-time record set at Obama’s 2009 inauguration (and roughly double the count on Friday, President Trump’s inauguration).