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Fight Back!

Tamika Mallory

January 21, 2018 – Women’s March Las Vegas


Ladies and gentlemen, there’s much more coming. Just so you know, we have some great performances that will be coming up and we want you all to be here. I know it feels a little cold. I’m actually freezing, but somebody on our team told me to shut up and come out here and say what I’m supposed to say, so let me do that.

Thank you all for being here, first of all. Let me tell you that all of you are the wind beneath our wings. We cannot do this work without each and every one of you who is here today.

I want to give a special shout-out to someone in this crowd. I’m only going to do one, but it’s really important that I say something about a black women who I called in Nevada and asked her to stand with me to help us make this happen. Her name is Sheila Collins, and I want to say thank you, Sheila, for all that you did. Got to give Sheila a little more love. She got all y’all here. Between her and Debra and all those who worked, we want to say thank you to the Collins family.

In this year since the Women’s March on Washington happened, women have continued to win. We continue to win because we continue to organize and to show up. That’s what winning is about right now – continuing to show up.

Our voices, though, have to get louder. Most people believe that women are just loud anyway. And that’s okay. To hell with it – turn it up. Be louder. Don’t worry about that. 

But now we cannot just be loud with our mouths. We must be loud with our votes, ladies and gentlemen who are with us. We have very specific work to do. People are counting on us.

You know the names. They’ve already told you, and you know who’s hurting. Even though many of you may turn a blind eye, you know who is hurting in this nation.

Don’t come to this rally today and sit here with your pink hat on, saying that you’re with us and you’re nowhere to be found when black people ask you to show up in the streets and defend our lives.

Our job in 2018 is to make good on all the times that you left us out here in the cold. Stand up for me, white woman. Come to my aid. You say you want to be my friend. I don’t want to here it from your mouth, I want to see it when you go to the polls in mid-term elections. 

We must build an inclusive movement in this country. We have not done it just because we’re all here today.

There are women in Nevada who did not feel they were a part of this. They’re black women, and it hurt me to my heart to come here today, knowing that many of them stayed home. They didn’t stay home because of me – I can’t take it personal. They stayed home because they are tired of showing up for you and allowing you to stand on their backs and do nothing to protect our lives. 

Black women that came from Africa. Black women. To call Africa a shit-hole country – Donald Trump, you need to know it only shows your disrespect for women because Africa is the mother of all civilization.

So we don’t come from shit-hole countries. But Donald Trump, let me tell you something – you are an asshole.

We have the power. We have the power. And with all movements like this one, there’s going to be division. Some people are sent to divide. That’s their job. They show up to complain that they weren’t invited even though they got every email. They knew about the meetings. But they didn’t show up because their job is to create division.

Be unswayed, brothers and sisters. Dr. Dorothy Hite said, “Women seldom do what we want to do. But we always do what we have to do.” 

We have to stay together. We have to march together. We have to organize together. We have to mobilize together. And we have to vote together – even when we don’t like one another. 

We have the power to change every policy and make every elected official work for us. But they cannot see divison among us because they will go and do nothing for the people. We must stand up and be loud and be bold.

The same way we were in Alabama. In Alabama, we went there and said, “Hell no.” A man who is running around malls, looking at teenagers, chasing little girls around. You can’t be a senator in this country. And black women said, “Hell no. Hell no. Hell no.” 

But white women, I want you to know that over half of you voted, still, the wrong way. [boos} From Emmett Till all the way to today, there is a problem in your community. It is not my job to fix it for you. It is your job to get uninvited from Thanksgiving and Christmas and all the other holidays  because I want you to say, “Hell no. Hell no. Hell no.”

Ladies and gentlemen who stand with us, and our brothers and sisters and folks who are gender-nonconforming, we see you. Our trans brothers and sisters, we see you. Stop looking for someone else to lead you. Don’t look to your left, don’t look to your right – look in the damn mirror. You are the leader. It starts with you. Go forward and do what you have to do. When they say, “Get back,” we say “Fight back!”

Get back! Get back! Get back! 

God bless you. Go in peace, and do the work.