If we are being completely honest, we did not expect it to be anything short of a catastrophic year, but I choose to look at the positives at this early juncture…
The Women’s March
The Women’s march of 2017 was a major example of speaking up for your beliefs. We saw people all over the world take to the streets; peacefully protesting for the rights of women. Crowd scientists say the Women’s march on Washington had THREE times as many people as Trump’s inauguration. This is a step in the right direction in regards to the government rebelling against intersectional women. The Guardian reported, “1 million people marched in the historic Women’s March on Washington on Saturday, according to initial estimates.” Minorities and non-minorities gathered all around the United States to show that the voices of the people were more powerful than any elected individual in office. This reminded Donald Trump to choose his words wisely.
Hidden Figures Is Making History with Figures
Hidden Figures is a movie that came out on January 6, 2017. The movie has big time television stars such as Taraji P. Henson, Academy Award winner Octavia Spencer, and classic pop and R&B singer Janelle Monae. Hidden Figures will forever go down as a classic movie, because it is the first movie that is based on a true story about young black women leading the way at NASA. It is a movie that shows how three black women impacted the lift off, landing, and engineering designing of space mission “Friendship 7”. The movie overall in domestic and international box offices made a grand total of $133,807,250. It also has three Academy Award nominations and two Golden Globe nominations. The movie strongly demonstrated the determination and commitment of African Americans, blue and white collar workers. It also displayed the willingness to press on despite all of the odds being stacked against you. It encouraged many people of color to follow their dreams and set high goals and standards, because anything that you put your mind to is possible; great motivator for 2017.
Banded Together Against the Muslim Ban Protest
The Muslim ban was an order signed by Donald Trump that banned individuals from five mainly muslim countries including Iran, Iraq, Somalia, Syria, and Yemen for 90 days, from entering America. He proposed the executive order which was disproportionate in targeting people with a particular religious belief (hence the term Muslim ban). Fortunately, the American people began to band together outside several airports and a courthouse to peacefully protest against the order. Because of the protesting and the pursuit for change, legal changes were made. The opponents of the order have fought for change on at least two fronts: religious purposes and because the current ban violates the Fifth Amendment (which states fair treatment toward an American citizen through the normal judicial system). The ban also changed the way certain Senators and American citizens view immigration and racially profiling people living outside of America. This ban was a disgrace and violation to the constitution; however, it seems to have brought out a humanistic approach amongst citizens from both political parties and from a variety of cultural backgrounds. Maybe it does take difficult times to see a peaceful positive change.
Increasing Number of Minorities Going Into Politics
As a result of this particular election more minorities especially those in the age range of 18 to 29 have an increased interest in acquiring political knowledge. Circle estimated twenty four million young voters who participated in the 2016 presidential election and out of those 50% of citizens, were ages 18-29. It is in fact a great thing that more of the younger generation is getting involved. According to News.Mic, Clinton earned 88% of their vote (to Trump’s 8%) as compared to Obama’s 93% in 2012. That being said, the overwhelming majority of African-Americans did show their support by voting for Clinton. Young minorities are starting to venture into politics at an increasing rate.
2017 Oscar’s- Black Excellence
In years past the Oscars were subjected to complaints of being white-washed, and not being diverse enough. This year, things changed; there was #blackgirlmagic and #blackboyjoy all around. The night started with a slew of impeccably dressed actors and actresses. Early into the evening Mahershala Ali, a new dad, won Best Supporting Actor for his work in Moonlight. Ali was not the only Moonlight winner. Director Berry Jenkins and playwright Tarell Alvin McCraney won the first Oscar in the Best Adapted Screenplay category for their work in the film. In the Oscars 80+ years in existence, they had their first ever Steve Harvey-esque blunder. LaLa Land was mistakenly announced as the winner for Best Picture, when in fact Moonlight was the true winner. Although the accounting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers took responsibility for the mistake, many were left wondering how such an error could have taken place. Last, but not least, Viola Davis proved to us all why the third time is truly the charm. David took home her first Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for her work in Fences. What is most notable is that Davis joins Whoopi Goldberg as the only two black actors to win an Oscar, Emmy, and Tony award. CONGRATS to all the winners!!
6. We All Have Each Other
Throughout all of the difficult times and changes, many know and understand that not everything works in our favor. However we never cease to fail in uplifting others and ourselves. We are the living proof that we are able to conquer anything that life throws at us and every day we continue to make the best of it. Each and every one of us has determination, dedication, and we all strive to make the world a more accepting place. Being a minority does have its downfalls; however, we always seem to rise to the occasion!
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