Thousands have joined hands for the “A Day Without A Woman” strike on Wednesday (Mar. 8), which follows the historic Women’s March on Washington held in the wake of Donald Trump’s inauguration.
Though the demonstration became the largest inaugural protest in U.S. history, it also cemented what women of color have known to be true for decades: their voices are diminished in traditional feminist circles.
Just in time for International Women’s Day, Remezcla music editor Isabelia Herrera, Radio Menea host Veronica Bayetti Flores and VIBE‘s very own senior editor Marjua Estevez stopped by NPR’s Alt.Latino to weigh in on the current climate of activism in the U.S. while tying the likes of Nina Simone and Beyoncé into the conversation. Here are some takeaways:
On Women’s March:
“Did [the Women’s March] inspire women to take action? Sure. Why not? But I think it should be made clear that women have always been in the trenches. We’ve always been at the forefront of any political movement. Really look into the Young Lords, the Black Panthers, even the Brown Berets–I think one of the things that has contributed to this element of visibility is the digital age that we’re in. We aren’t just reading about what’s going on in the newspaper, or textbooks or pamphlets. The female presence can no longer be glossed over as in previous eras. There is no revolution without the woman.” —Marjua Estevez
On the guise of intersectional feminism:
“There’s a lot of frictions and divisions within the movement, and white women don’t always put everything on the line for women of color in the ways that women of color put everything on the line for our communities.” —Veronica Bayetti Flores
“More than anything else, [the Women’s March], for me, [brought] to light how much work we still have to do as a collective. It was also a poignant reminder of the historic oppression and silencing of black and brown women by our Anglo counterparts.” —Marjua Estevez
“I personally felt we [needed] to do a better job of uplifting and celebrating trans women…I think we need to do a better job of changing the rhetoric and the messaging of a lot of the signs and the way the movement has very specifically focused on cisgender women.” —Isabelia Herrera
On reclaiming Brujería:
“Part of the colonization of the American continent was the Catholic Church in Latin America, and with that came a lot of demonization of indigenous and Afro-diasporic religions that came with slaves, and reclaiming that is very powerful because a lot of times Brujería, if it’s in our family or if our family seek out brujas, was always hushed. It was a little bit shameful. We didn’t talk about it very much, so a lot of women right now are talking about that unapologetically. It’s about reclaiming a legacy outside of colonization.” —Veronica Bayetti Flores
Listen to “Celebrating Mujeres: Butterflies, Brujas And Bey” here: