Empowerment

On Being A Leader And A Black Woman

By: Yasmine Duncan

Think of a leader. Picture one. Picture a leader in excruciating detail, the first image at the forefront of your mind. From their eyes to their energy, imagine. Look deeper into the image and ask yourself a few questions. What qualities do leaders have? What type of obstacles do they have to overcome? How does one even become so powerful?  Unfortunately, you are most likely not picturing yourself. You may be picturing anything but yourself…a black woman.

Most of us were never taught that we are leaders, therefore when we hear the word, we don’t think of ourselves. Well known examples of strong, black, female leaders are limited in comparison to the inverse, white males who are usually seen as leaders. Why is this?

We as a gender and as a race are definitely capable of greatness as seen through great  revolutionaries such as Sojourner Truth, Harriet Tubman, Madame CJ Walker, and Angela Davis. However, growing up, in many history classes I learned that most of my history was simply working in fields.

I was never really taught that my ancestors created empires and were kings and queens long before being forced to be slaves. I was only handed glimpses of my power and while I tried to cherish those heavenly visions, they began to vanish. My power was stolen. First, by history. Second, by slander. Facing slander as a black woman is as common as facing a new dawn every morning. We grow used to it, and numb to the pain of the sharp words.

Whether the insults come from other races, other black people, or eventually from ourselves, it is always there. It is always something. Our skin is too dark or our hair is too curly. Our skin is too light or our hair is straight, as if we’re trying to be something we’re not. Our bodies are shameful on us, but beautiful on anyone else. We are “angry”, even though we certainly have the right to be. Our voices are always too loud, even when they are speaking of human rights and success.

Then we are silenced. That’s why only a few black female leaders are known in history and almost none are known in the present. Do you know who Beverly Bond is, creator of Black Girls Rock!? Do the names Alicia Garza, Opal Tomet, and Patrisse Cullors sound familiar? Those are the women who created #BlackLivesMatter in 2012.

Those being some of the most prominent and recent examples, do you know who Bessie Coleman is? She was the first black woman to stage a public flight in America. Have you ever read the poetry of Maya Angelou? Do you know the work of Dorothy Height, an activist from the 1900s who fought for opportunities for black women until her death in 2010? Have you ever read the name Ellen Johnson Sirleaf in your history books? She was elected as the first black female president in the Africa in 1938.

A revolutionary. An artist. An activist. A leader. You are all of these women. All of these women surround you with strength. Leaders like these women can be found anywhere. They are seen but not remembered and heard but never listened to by the majority of people. On behalf of these leaders, I would like to share a very poorly hidden secret in our society; people don’t want black women to be successful.

The few times we all get that golden glimpse of victory it is taken. We are always told what we can and cannot do, but has anybody ever told you what you can do? Do you know that the future of civil rights lies in your heads, your hands, on the screen you read these words off of? You cannot say that you are not powerful and capable of changing the world; as a black woman you are inherently strong.

After hundreds of years of abuse thrown upon our ancestors and everyone plotting our fall, here we are. Here you are! You are the woman refusing to give up her seat. You are the woman who marches constantly. You are the woman with arms heavy from holding signs and burdens.

You are the woman inspiring a generation with dark skin and bright eyes. You must simply rise above the criticism and you will become that woman. A powerful leader. And it is vital to take back your power. You must understand it, accept it, and mold it into a better future for our community. Once you reclaim your natural power, you become immortal. Surely a person can die, but your ideas and firm touch upon the world can never vanish.

You are a woman. You are black. And you are the world’s greatest leader.

Leave a Reply

15 Comments on "On Being A Leader And A Black Woman"

Leave a Comment


Sort by:   newest | oldest | most voted
Guest
28 days 12 hours ago

cheap fjallraven

I really enjoy this template you have got going on in your internet site. What is the name of the theme by the way? I was thinking of using this style for the website I am going to build for my class room project.

Guest

mont blanc fountain pens for sale

Wonderful solutions.Id like to recommend checking out such as something like cheeseburger. What are your thoughts?

Guest
26 days 23 hours ago

vibram fivefingers for cheap

Can I simply say what a aid to seek out someone who really is aware of what theyre speaking about on the internet. You definitely know learn how to carry a problem to light and make it important. Extra individuals have to learn this and perceive this a…

Guest
25 days 20 hours ago

Roberto Cavalli online

Straightforward and written well, thanks for the information

Guest
24 days 17 hours ago

maison pierre hardy

Ive meant to post something similar to this on my webpage and youve got given me a concept. Cheers.

Guest
23 days 14 hours ago

birkenstock outlet store

Spot on with this write-up, I truly suppose this website wants much more consideration. I’ll probably be once more to read far more, thanks for that info.

Guest
21 days 17 hours ago

balmain outlet men

That is just to make certain that your does not end up in the garbage can after a couple of days.

Guest
21 days 6 hours ago

factory coach online

Great beat ! I would like to apprentice while you amend your website, how could i subscribe for a blog web site? The account aided me a acceptable deal. I had been tiny bit acquainted of this your broadcast offered bright clear ideaI am really impresse…

Guest
19 days 59 minutes ago

discount barbour

I am going to go ahead and bookmark this article for my brother for a study project for class. This is a attractive web page by the way. Where do you pick up the design for this web page?

Guest
17 days 2 minutes ago

emu outlet store

I just thought I would leave a comment to let you how much of a nice read this actually was.

Guest
6 days 18 hours ago

north face online store

Just want to say your article is astounding. The clarity in your post is simply spectacular and i can assume you are an expert on this field. Well with your permission allow me to grab your rss feed to keep up to date with incoming post. Thanks a milli…

Guest

shop victoria’s secret outlet online

Im really Glad i found this site.Added allenchu.4rtofclean.com to my bookmark!Check out my Kissing Guide !

Guest
4 days 11 hours ago

moncler outlet online

To the point and written well, thank you for the information

Guest
1 day 13 hours ago

buy ugg boots

Hello Is it okay if I go sort of away from the topic? Im tryin to read your post from my brand new Macbook although it wont show correctly (a few of the buttons are pretty much missing), any suggestions? Shall I try to find an fix for my browser or som…

Guest
2 hours 16 minutes ago

prada bags online

Thank you for discussing that fantastic content material on your web site. I came across it on google. I will check to come back if you publish more aricles.

wpDiscuz