This year promises to be filled with loud voices and screams of outrage. The bang of cries for justice, freedom and equality has already begun, and who do you think kicked it off? That's right, women folk with a powerful Women's March that took place all over the nation in various cities, including ours—Jackson.
The idea of solidarity to lift our voices for our rights as women still overcomes me. Millions of women raced to the streets in this nation's capital and all over the world with signs that sang out to our concerns about being raped of our rights as women by our new presidential administration.
As I am still in resolution and revolution mode after the success of the Women's March, I began to wonder what can be done to get more women of ethnic backgrounds involved in this fight. And not just to show up and march, but to also lend our concerns and our voices. As a black woman, I know that my struggles are not the same as women of other races. We all need to be at this table.
We need to be more inclusive in our community in many ways, but specifically when it comes to bringing women together to fight for ourselves. It's imperative that all organizations working to advocate for women's rights or providing services to improve the lives of women are included in events and activities that would lend to their efforts.
I've called upon a few of the women I know in Jackson who are activists for women's rights, and their contributions spread far and wide. Together we are compiling a list of organizations in Jackson and throughout the state that will serve as a resource tool for people planning events, protests, etc. that concern all women. Any woman who needs a service or assistance can use this tool.
Everyone who cares about women's rights and who works to see that our voices are heard, or who provides services to uplift and support us, should be included to see change happen! All voices should be and must be heard. It doesn't matter what your racial background is in this fight. If you are a woman, this fight is yours.
If you know of any organizations that fit the bill, please send the following information to [email protected]: name of the organization, contact person and/or founder, brief description of the type of service or function, email address and website, and phone number (if available).
As a service to the community, we want to be what we need to be to best serve each other. Therefore, please send your thoughts, suggestions and questions to us as well. If you or someone you know is interested in assisting us, by all means, contact us.
Coretta Scott King said, "Women, if the soul of the nation is to be saved, I believe that you must become its soul." We started out with a bang and it's just the beginning.
People often ask, "What's next?" after marches and protests. Well, this is one thing that's next—unified organization. It's the first step to what most of us want to see in this city and this state, racial reconciliation, open and honest communication, and equal rights for all who are being forsaken of it.
We have just begun, but there is much more to come. Our fight for our rights will not just fade away. The stronger we become together, the louder our cries, our voices, our chants.
Funmi "Queen" Franklin is a word lover, poet, a truth yeller and community activist. She is the founder of an organization that promotes self love, awareness and sisterhood.