As night began to fall on Paris, French people young and old began to flock to the streets in a defiant stand against a targeted act of terrorism that left at least a dozen of their countrymen dead. While the manhunt for those who attacked satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo remained underway, the people of France made their voices heard: Their democracy would not fall to terror.
Many marchers carried pens as a sign of unity with the journalists whose murder was an affront to a core democratic value: freedom of the press. Others carried signs with one simple phrase: “Je Suis Charlie,” or “I am Charlie.” The show of solidarity went viral across social media accounts in Paris, inspiring public gatherings and candlelight vigils to mourn the victims of Wednesday’s shooting. One such “Je Suis Charlie” Facebook event had more than 22,000 marked as attendees before it began at at 6 p.m. Paris time.
With pens and candles in hand, these are some of the ways Parisians flooded the streets on Wednesday night: