Here’s How to Actually Thank Them.
Late on Tuesday night, America was once again reminded of the power of Black women. Thanks in large part to overwhelmingly high turnout among Black voters and Black women in particular, Alabama managed to elect a pro-choice Democrat in the Bible Belt, tighten up the U.S. Senate’s progressive alliance, and keep an accused child molester out of the government. Exit polls show that 98 percent of Black women (and 93 percent of Black men) who cast ballots voted for Jones, while 63 percent of white women voted for Moore.
Black women are not new to this, we are true to this; 94 percent of us voted against another accused sexual harasser, Donald Trump, while white women ushered him into power. Black women have been the Democrats’ most reliable voting bloc for decades.
On Wednesday morning, the media erupted with calls of “Thank you!” to Black women for showing up. But as Kamala Harris said, we need to do more than congratulate them. “Let’s address issues that disproportionately affect Black women—like pay disparity, housing & under-representation in elected office,” she tweeted. ‘Tis the season, after all, and supporting black women should be at the top of your list. There are many organizations and causes that could use our support. Give because our power has been proven time and again — despite movements silencing us, funders forgetting us, and voter suppression restricting us. Give because Black women show up to save the country time and again. Here are a few ways you can help.
Donate to CollectivePAC. Political action committees get a bad rap — but until we get money out of politics, Black people must build the political power to continually play at every level. Founded by wife-and-husband team Stefanie Brown James and Quentin James, CollectivePAC has helped elect 23 Black or progressive candidates — including Doug Jones — in just over a year of their founding. They’re asking people to donate $20.18 in preparation for the all important 2018 midterms and embolden Black political power. CollectivePAC.org
Support Higher Heights. Despite the power of the Black women voters, we are still underrepresented in elected office. Higher Heights is the country’s preeminent organization committed solely to the political leadership of Black women — in office, as chiefs of staff, and political operatives at every level. Their #BlackWomenLead campaign is the perfect thing to amplify and resource. higherheightsleadershipfund.org
Support Black Women Candidates. Stacey Abrams could be the first Black woman to govern the state of Georgia, and deepens hope for women of color countrywide. Progressive Black candidates at all levels need our support to win and have the chance to lead change and transform the status quo. Check out candidates like Abrams; Diedre DeJear, running for secretary of State in Iowa; and Pam Keith, who is running for Congress in Florida’s 18th district, and deserve a look — and possibly your support.
Give to Woke Vote. A collaborative of grassroots organizers in the South, Woke Vote pounded the pavement in Black Alabamian strongholds to secure the bag for Doug Jones. Want to tell Black Alabamians thank you? Support young Black Alabamians who are registering voters, canvassing our neighborhoods, and building credibility. WokeVote.US
Donate Petitions to Restore Florida Voting Rights. Doug Jones’s win was bolstered by thousands of newly reinstated voters. Having paid their debt to society, they persisted through obstacles to engage as citizens — and cast their votes. We have the chance to restore these rights to nearly 1.6 million voters in Florida — a state critical to 2018 and 2020. The all-Black team at Stay Woke has partnered with Florida organizers and Rock the Vote to get Floridians to sign petitions — and non-Floridians to donate petitions statewide. Florida.OurStates.Org
Color of Change PAC. You may already know Color of Change by their powerful leader, Rashad Robinson, or from the transformational work they’ve done shifting the representation of people of color in media. They have expanded their reach, leveraging their strong brand and large base to focus on criminal-justice reform through district attorneys’, attorneys’ general, and sheriffs’ races across the country. By focusing on the smaller, more local wins, Color of Change PAC is helping lead the way in reforming our justice system through the power of the ballot box. ColorOfChange.Org