Stop The Silence On Sexism

Ludacris, you just stepped in it, and like Don Imus, you don't get a pass.

In your song, "Politics," you refer to Senator Hillary Clinton as an irrelevant bitch. Okay, you have a First Amendment right to your opinion - no matter how ignorant - and I have a right to beat that opinion down with the truth. I served as a national surrogate for Hillary, but now I am speaking for all of the women you address by calling one of the greatest avatars of "hope in action" - a former candidate for President, former first lady and current U.S. Senator - a dog. Have you no decency? What did Hillary ever do to you? Let's see. For the past three decades, just fight on the behalf of and get health care for America's poorest children, educate young black brothers in Harlem, advocate for foster children, provide benefits for soldiers, and support black single mothers. And that's the just the first few lines of her resume.
But this is much bigger than Hillary. Let's put it in perspective. Would you sit back and be silent while Coretta Scott King was insulted on a daily basis, as sport, without the outrage and defense of others? We are so used to hearing women demeaned in our music (and culture) that it has become the first note of the down beat on a phat track. If any of us ignore these attacks it is only a matter of time until they come for all of us. If we say nothing, we are all complicit.

I believe I speak for many of Hillary's friends, like Maya Angelou, Dolores Huerta, and America Ferrera, when I shout, "enough is enough - sexism is as repugnant as racism!" Now a movement has emerged. Hillary's run was the catalyst, our outrage at the silence in the wake of sexism and misogyny is our fuel, and we have lots of it. We will respond and fight back. A league of women and men has now created a coalition to defend women from this type of abuse. As we say in the streets, don't start none, won't be none. We have seen and experienced the consequences of silence. We must stand against this hate speech. My sisters, if you don't know, you better ask someone, cause we are strapped, locked, and loaded with knowledge, resolve, and strength - and we need you to join us at Our battle cry? Stop the silence, women count!

Erika Alexander is an actress, activist, and member of WomenCount


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