HuffPost Opinion: Why Black Women Have Never Had the Privilege of Rage
10/14/18 –The past several weeks have sparked an unprecedented conversation about women’s collective fury in this #MeToo, #WhyIDidntReport and post-Kavanaugh hearings era. Three recent books and a flurry of op-eds, essays and social media energy has everyone talking about rage in a brand new way.
This is good news for women. But what’s been blatantly missing from mainstream dialogue is a nuanced understanding of how rage is perceived by and received from black women ― and whether this alleged new moment in the ongoing liberation of women will actually be an equitable one.
Black women have been furious for decades, and our collective rage hasn’t exactly led to any revolutionary change in our lived experience. Quite the opposite: The “angry black woman” trope is a powerful tool that’s been used to dehumanize and silence black women for decades.
The dangerous stereotype of the black female as an angry, finger-snapping, emasculating, neck-moving, “oh no you didn’t”-spewing being has done deep harm. Our anger has never been viewed as legitimate or warranted due to unfair treatment; instead, it’s been twisted into a pathology. Read more at Huff Post Opinion.
Washington Post: Female Fury Is In–What Does That Mean for Mothers?
10/11/18 –As a woman, I am angry. But as a mother, I’m seething. There’s a robust conversation right now about the historical and present power of female rage as a tool for social change. A number of books, articles and social media hashtags are pointing out that women are fed up. Instead of being silenced by patriarchal ideas of women’s emotions as “hysteria,” women are embracing their anger as a social and political force to be reckoned with.
That is great news for women. But what about mothers as a key subset of women?
Truth is, mothers have plenty of reasons to be angry. We live in the only industrialized nation that doesn’t offer a federal paid parental leave, our maternal mortality rates are rising while rates in other developed countries are in decline or flat, and affordable, quality child care feels like a national oxymoron. Studies indicate that the “maternal wall” — bias toward mothers in hiring and promotion practices — is more pervasive than the glass ceiling. These are just some of the policy failures and systemic gaps that can rob us of the joy of motherhood and make us angry. Read more at Washington Post
New York Times: Forgiving $38,750 in Child Support, for My Kids’ Sake
April 19, 2015
Illustration by Abigail Gray Swartz
Earlier this year, I spent three hours sitting on a hard, wooden bench in the Queens County Family Court, waiting for a judge to approve my petition to forgive $38,750 in child support arrears from my ex-husband.
The judge said, “Well this is a rare one,” then asked me several times if I was aware of what I was doing and if I had received legal counsel. When I told my single mom friends, they looked at me as if I had committed an act of treason. “Child support is all we have!” one friend exclaimed.
Mom and Dad are Fighting Podcast
April 23, 2015
In this week’s edition of Slate’s parenting podcast Mom and Dad Are Fighting, Slate editors Allison Benedikt and Dan Kois talk to writer and mother Kimberly Seals Allers about child support and why she decided to forgive her ex-husband’s $38,750 debt.
Listen to Mom and Dad Are Fighting by clicking on the arrow in the audio player below: