Mandela will never, ever be your minstrel. Over the next few days you will try so, so hard to make him something he was not, and you will fail. You will try to smooth him, to sandblast him, to take away his Malcolm X. You will try to hide his anger from view.
Our political system is neglecting black women — and we can change it. No one is making this argument better than black women themselves. Women like Roxane Gay, Brittney Cooper and countless others have written powerfully and eloquently about the unique experience of being a black woman in America, and I would like to add my voice in solidarity. Because it’s important that black men publicly voice our support on these issues – not just in order to stand alongside our mothers, sisters, daughters, and friends, but because it is the best thing for our nation.