Sen. Kamala Harris Pays Homage to Shirley Chisholm

Kamala Harris’ announcement on “Good Morning America” on Martin Luther King Jr. Day was a stark reminder of what happened 47 years ago this week in a race for the presidency.

Harris is standing on the shoulders of Shirley Chisholm, the first Black woman to run for president, and
10 other Black women.


Rep. Shirley Chisholm (D-N.Y.), said of her Democratic ticket in 1972: “I am not the candidate of black America, although I am black and proud.”

“I am not the candidate of the women’s movement of this country, although I am a woman, and I’m equally proud of that. I am not the candidate or any political bosses or fat cats or special interests. . . . I am the candidate of the people of America.”

Harris’ campaign spokesperson, Kirsten Allen, told the Guardian they purposely chose to honor Chisholm’s legacy.

“Shirley Chisholm’s activism, advocacy and willingness to persistently remind the nation of the work to be done on behalf of it’s people is an enduring legacy that lives on in the Senator and to honor that legacy in her own campaign for President was a no-brainer,” she said.

She also chose to honor her with the campaigns color scheme of red and yellow:

In a tweet, the Black White House correspondent, Yamiche Alcindor, often a target of Trump’s, also weighed in:

Chisholm was also known for her quote, “If they don’t give you a seat at the table, bring a folding chair.”

And in the era of #MeToo, where Harris spoke in support of Christine Blasey Ford and accused then Judge Brett Kavanaugh of having a crystal clear memory when it was convenient for him, and where she promises to give a voice to the voiceless in her campaign, it seems as though she’s giving a nod to making room for herself at the table.

“Like Shirley, I believe that to restore confidence and trust in our institutions and leaders, we need to speak truth,” Harris wrote of Chisholm in a February 2018
essay in Essence.

“We need to acknowledge that racism is real in this country. Anti-Semitism is real in this country. Sexism, sexual assault, and workplace harassment are real in this country. We need to speak the truth that America was founded by immigrants, and we should not be vilifying people who come here in search of greater opportunity for themselves and their children.”
.

Both Harris and Chisholm are daughters of immigrants.

Chisholm was elected to the New York State Assembly, becoming only the second African American woman elected to the state legislature. She was also the first Black woman elected to Congress.

“That I am a national figure because I was the first person in 192 years to be at once a congressman, Black and a woman proves, I think, that our society is not yet either just or free,” she
would later state.

In 2016, Harris became the second Black woman and first south Asian woman elected to the Senate.

Harris, who unveiled a campaign slogan “Kamala Harris For The People,” is setting up
campaign headquarters in Baltimore, with another office in Oakland.

Latest News

banned books

Texas Lawmaker Pursues Banning 850 Books From Schools Over Fears That They Might Cause ‘Student Discomfort’

The state of Texas is continuing its descent away from democracy and equality for its citizens. First came its horrifying rollback of women’s rights with its recent abortion ban. Then came its recent attack on trans students’ ability to participate in sports. Now, Texas lawmakers are at it again, this…

closeup of hand with remote

Anti-LGBTQ Group ‘One Million Moms’ Protests Mattress Company’s Inclusive Commercial Featuring Lesbian Couple

The conservative anti-LGBTQ hate organization known as One Million Moms is at it again, this time protesting a TV commercial from the bedding company Avocado Green Mattress, which features a number of couples relaxing on their mattresses, including what the group considers an “offensive” lesbian couple. The Advocate’s Trudy Ring…

girls high school sports

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott Officially Bans Transgender Students From School Sports

Holding true to threats he has made in the past, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has officially signed into Texas state law a rule that would restrict transgender students from participating in high school sports consistent with their gender identity. ESPN’s Katie Barnes reported that following Abbott’s action, Texas has become…

AAPI Hate

New FBI Report Estimates Anti-Asian Hate in the United States Increased by 73% in 2020

We’ve known anti-Asian sentiment increased dramatically in the U.S. since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, but new government data quantifies just how shockingly severe that jump has been. Based on recently released FBI data, Sakshi Venkatraman of NBC News reported that “anti-Asian hate crimes increased more than 73% in…

Boeing building

Boeing Global Services CEO Ted Colbert Named Black Engineer of the Year by ‘US Black Engineer & Information Technology’ Magazine

Originally published at boeing.mediaroom.com. Boeing Company ranked No. 17 on The DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity list in 2021.   Ted Colbert, president and CEO of Boeing Global Services, has been named Black Engineer of the Year (BEYA) for 2022 by U.S. Black Engineer & Information Technology magazine. The…