After a strenuous election cycle, the Biden-Harris administration has officially settled into the White House, thanks to the tireless work of Black women like former Georgia State Representative Stacey Abrams, who mobilized voters during the election to flip the state blue. On Jan. 21, The Daily Show's Trevor Noah sat down with the former representative to discuss the best plan of action moving forward for a more progressive United States, and why women of color play such an important role in achieving this goal.
"Black women tend to bear the brunt of every evil and bear the responsibility of every failure. And so our response, our only response, has to be that we're gonna push harder, fight longer, and recognize that we will go unrecognized," Abrams told Noah. But the Our Time Is Now author explained that it's women from minority groups as a whole — including Latinx women, Asian Americans, Pacific Islanders, and Native Americans — who band together to have such an astounding impact on such prominent issues.
"Grassroots organizing and political organizing are two facets of how you put together the Infinity Stone that actually delivers us from Thanos into justice."
"Women are often the leaders, the lost leaders," she said. "We are the ones who do the work. We rarely get the credit, but we understand the consequences. And that's really what drives us. And, certainly, Black women in this moment deserve every accolade and every plaudit. But I also want to make sure that we think about all the other women of color and white women who have entered the space where they are from places of marginalization and disadvantage. Because men seem to be men no matter which race they're in. So I think it's critical for us to not only lift up Black women, to lift up women of color, to lift up women when we do right, but to recognize that we're always in a coalition trying to get this done."
By recognizing the accolades of women color in the fight for social justice and racial equity, Abrams hopes to set an example for those in positions of power to be collaborative and push for necessary improvement. "I do think it's always essential that you recognize all of the component pieces," she said. "Because grassroots organizing and political organizing are two facets of how you put together the Infinity Stone that actually delivers us from Thanos into justice . . . Defeating Donald Trump was simply attacking one of the symptoms. We've got to fix the disease, which is Republican insistence that the way to win elections is to keep citizens from voting. And that's a solvable problem."
In reference to Joe Biden's first executive orders as president, Abrams believes addressing the spread of COVID-19 first and foremost was the right decision. "We have to recognize that the disproportionate infection rate, the disproportionate death rate, the disproportionate loss of income has affected communities of women of color in ways that will continue to reverberate through our economy. Additionally, Representative Abrams urgently insists on prioritizing climate change to promote environmental justice, create jobs, and foster opportunities for communities across the nation.
More than anything, she hopes to see the conversation around racial justice permeate the work done to address these issues and influence the way in which we advance ourselves as a society. "I think overarching all of that is making certain that we embrace racial justice in every one of these conversations, because racial justice cuts across every one of these issues," Abrams said. "And if we do it right, we can start to finally reckon with who we are and what we can become."