In Honor of Cicely Tyson

In Honor of Cicely Tyson

I was working on a blog post—a love letter to black women—when I heard the news about Ms. Cicely Tyson.

We lost a giant, an icon, a pillar in the Black community. Miss Tyson made it to 96 years of age with a resume many actors dream of. She shattered stereotypes for many dark skinned black women looking for the promise of Hollywood fame, while paving the way for the Nia Longs and the Viola Davises of the world.

My heart aches for those who knew and loved her personally, and for those of us who only knew her from our television screens. She felt like family, because many could see ourselves in her. We all stand on your shoulders Miss Tyson.

May you rest in power, because you live on in us.

(Photo by Jack Mitchell/Getty Images)

Show Up for Black Women: We’ve Earned It

Show Up for Black Women: We’ve Earned It

“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.” 

Martin Luther King Jr. (Strength to Love, 1963)

Happy Martin Luther King Jr. Day. There is such significance in this day and it holds such great meaning for many of us.

Black women’s role in the Civil Rights Movement in the United States is pivotal, because we were at the forefront of King’s fight for equality. In the midst of being the backbone of our families, we manage to stand up to systems that create inequality in an effort to create a more hopeful future for our descendants.

As was proven even more recently in the Georgia senate races, we show up and we show out. The one woman powerhouse Stacey Abrams, and many other black women have proven time and time again that the voice of black women will be heard and respected. We have a long track record of community care, in spite of the many negative depictions of our existence.

I couldn’t end Martin Luther King Jr. day without recognizing the force that black women are and the allies who support us. There is no better day to recognize that.

(Photo from Essence Magazine)