Reposted: I Don’t Want to Be an Excuse for Racist Violence in Charleston | New Republic

Article Blast:

“We can’t talk about Charleston without talking about white women. Because Dylann Roof did.” Chloe Angyal

Source: I Don’t Want to Be an Excuse for Racist Violence in Charleston | New Republic


I agree with a good bit of what Ms. Angyal says. I agree with her call to accountability for white women of the younger generations. However, I think that’s a warranted qualification. Such an expectation of women from my mother’s generation, or prior, may assume certain securities and liberties afforded to modern women that prior generations did not enjoy.

That said,  I’d like to offer up two comments in the way of correction.

First, I am somewhat taken aback that Ms. Angyal does not take into account the role that violence by white men may play in intimidating women from engaging in protesting or suppressing lynchings. I cannot understand how she can disregard the influence that such brazen violence would have on vulnerable women, often who did not have rights of property nor the political capital to protect themselves from issues of domestic violence, suppression of reproductive autonomy, even exploitation with regards to employment.

Any reasonable argument should at least entertain the possibility that such violence sent a message in two directions: publicly – outward to the black population, and privately – inward to the white women at home.

Second, American Suffragettes participated in the Abolition movement, and in rallying for the enfranchisement of African-Americans in part to bolster their subsequent calls for female suffrage.

In fact, women were the next-to-last group granted the right to vote, only to win that right before Native Americans.
http://www.kqed.org/assets/pdf/education/digitalmedia/us-voting-rights-timeline.pdf

Technically, Wyoming did grant women the right to vote, within a year of the 15th Amendment:
http://www.laits.utexas.edu/lawdem/unit01/reading1/history_to_vote.html

Her call to accountability for women, and her underlying assumption that women have traditionally ignored the problems of the African-American population is an over-simplification that, sadly, shows its own inherent sexism.

 

 

 

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