Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Be Bold! Be Red! on October 30th

Thanks to The Unapologetic Mexican, I was reminded this week that a year ago (and it hardly seems possible that it could have been that long already), the Be Bold! Be Red! campaign called on men and women from coast to coast to organize to fight violence against women of color. Since that time, we have seen publicized multiple cases of such violence, a ridiculous number of them involving women in Iraq, such as Pvt. LaVena Johnson, brutally beaten before being murdered and disfigured in an attempt to hide the identity of the perpetrator(s). The official ruling on the case from the Army? Suicide.

And so it goes.

So we will return. We will blog, we will gather, we will sing, we will wear red, and we will talk about why. Last year, one of my Latino students who had spoken with me about her own difficulties only a couple of days before, came walking into my classroom on Be Bold! Be Red! Day wearing red and I almost wept right there in front of God and everybody.

Last week, when the sociology club I advise chose to co-sponsor a Discussion Forum on violence against women (in one of the busiest locations on campus), a beautiful young African-American woman who had admitted to me only days before that she has been beaten by her husband for years, chose to step up and tell her story to the group. With tears running down her face, she talked of how the fear of leaving involved not just fear for her safety, but fear of what her friends and family would think of her for allowing this abuse to go on for so long. She told of how talking to me had given her the courage to tell her family and how, in spite of the fact that she still bears the marks of her latest attack, she is now -- finally -- living alone and going to therapy and doing so with the support of those who love her. I'll wear red for and with her on October 30th. And in memory of LaVena Johnson who did not commit suicide, no matter what the records say. And for the victims who will be suffering even as we wear red and gather and blog.

Please go to Document the Silence and then consider what you might do to commemorate the struggle of women of color to be free of the idea that they don't matter, the idea that they should remain silent, and the idea that we won't stand with them.

2 comments:

blackwomenblowthetrumpet.blogspot.com said...

Hello there!!

Thank you so much for taking this issue seriously!

Please, continue to blow the trumpet!

You are welcome to stop by my blog any time and share your thoughts on this and other issues that matter to women!

Peace, blessings and DUNAMIS!
Lisa

Changeseeker said...

Thanks for dropping by, Lisa. I supported the Be Bold! Be Red! campaign last year and I'm delighted to have been able to do even more this year.