Why Has the United States Never Had a Black Woman Governor? | Sojourners

Why Has the United States Never Had a Black Woman Governor?

It's long past time to radically disrupt the systems that stifle women and our democracy.
An illustration of a smiling woman with a red headband on a political poster with a mail-in ballot in hand and a mailbox in front of her. The poster reads, "Mail your ballet today! Vote by mail."
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CIVIL RIGHTS LEADER Ella Baker utilized the strength of her voice at the height of that movement to fundamentally question the notions and ideas of equality and leadership in this nation. In 1969, Baker said, “[T]he system under which we now exist has to be radically changed.” This means “facing a system that does not lend itself to your needs and devising means by which you change that system.”

Black women have long been considered the backbone for civil rights, social justice, church advancement, and animators of democracy in the United States. If this is so, then why are so many still overlooked for advancement in political power as well as the everyday jobs that they are more than qualified for?

While “women” won the right to vote in 1920, Black women fought for about another half century to exercise their right. The inequities of gender, race, and access are still with us — and there is no greater time than now to push hard for political and social advancement.

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The cover for Sojourners' May 2023 issue about the mysteries surrounding birth in a post-Roe v. Wade world. There are several illustrations in pink bubbles, such as a pregnant woman, the Supreme Court building, and a hand holding a tiny sprout.
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