November 25th, 2016
I come from a small close-nit family that taught me how to stand up for myself. My mother and grandmother raised me - That’s where it all began.
Throughout my work, I’ve learned a lot about what it means to make a difference. It’s about activating people to actually do something before and after the march. It’s about working to improve the social, political and economic conditions of our communities. It’s about setting a higher standard for what it really means for my people to be free.
I’m well aware of the powerful psychological influences the media has on what we think about the value of Black life in America and it’s important not to downplay its effect.
If you know Black history outside of the two pages we’re given in most history books, you should know our lives didn’t begin and end with slavery.
The assumption is often that our communities can’t do for themselves. There are people who write books and think pieces about Black communities without ever stepping foot in them. Why? Because our suffering is profitable for issues and industries of all kinds.
Instead of working to dismantle oppressive systems that work to erase us, Black people have merely become subject matters of society.
As advocates, we should always be asking ourselves, how can we do better? How can we check and use our privileges to funnel resources to those most impacted? How can we build a table instead of waiting to be asked to sit down at one?
Personally, my goal is to uplift the voices of Black women and find ways to shift power their way. It’s time to change the conversation and take back our narrative about what it means to fight for our rights as women. Because if I'm not working towards justice, then I'm just working to maintain order.
Find more from Brittany on her website: www.brittanytoliver.com