Black women have a well-documented history of being some of the strongest pillars in the community.
Black women have a well-documented history of being some of the strongest pillars in the community. We can't think of any other demographic that has accomplished so much in such little time. Outside of the obvious things we can be thanked for (think Michelle Obama, Oprah Winfrey and Lena Waithe), younger generations may not know just how significant Black women are and what their contributions mean to society.
"When we look at the state of black women, there's a lot of good news," says Melanie Campbell, president and CEO of the National Coalition on Black Civic Participation and convener of the Black Women's Roundtable. "We are leading in entrepreneurship, political participation and civic engagement. We are leading in so many different areas. And now that we're in crisis and all of these disparities have been exposed, we're stepping up even more."
Campbell says she has seen black women across the country mobilize to meet the needs of their communities, collecting masks and meals for people affected by the pandemic and working to ensure people have access to voting during elections. They're filing for patents at higher rates than white women, despite experiencing discrimination in STEM education and facing significant barriers to capital investment. Black women are also leading the country into a post-pandemic era of remote work by having a higher rate of entrepreneurship than both white and Latin women, according to McKinsey & Company.
These women are not playing; they are leading the way with their bold and influential personalities. They are participants, leaders, and breaking through stereotypes and ceilings with their talent, drive, and hard work. This is due almost entirely to the growing awareness of their tremendous amount of talent. And indeed, it is growing.
In short, Black women are the backbone of many flourishing societies. Whether they're inventing the best music or the moon landing or a damn cure for AIDS, they're doing it. So let's acknowledge their contributions and make sure we don't forget that Black is beautiful, but even more important, Black is powerful.
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