Skip to main content

#ShePersisted: A New Mantra for Women

I am a mom of two awesome children who teach me more than I ever thought possible. I love writing, exercise, movies, and LGBT advocacy.

Women have persisted over the years.

Women have persisted over the years.

Resisting Wrongs Means Fighting For What's Right

Politics are more stressful than ever. President Donald J. Trump has done a great many things that appear to have only increased the divide among a great many groups throughout the United States, and conversations about him have created a ripple effect across the world. But could any good have come from the political divide currently gripping the United States?

Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren from Massachusetts was reading a letter from Coretta Scott King, the widow of civil rights icon Martin Luther King Jr., about Senator Jeff Sessions from Alabama. Sessions was confirmed as attorney general on Wednesday, February 8, 2017, but not before a couple of extraordinary things happened on the Senate floor on Feb. 7.

Firstly, Warren had attempted to read the letter in an open forum as the Senate was discussing the then-potential confirmation of Sessions as Attorney General, something which Democrats and likely some Republicans have been aghast over. Warren has become known as something of a liberal firebrand against President Trump and other like-minded individuals, and her reading of Scott King's letter only further inflamed Republican senators, who accused Warren of impugning Sessions' reputation.

Thus began Warren's birth as a resistance fighter.

She was removed from the microphone and left the Senate chamber, having been banned from the Senate floor for the time being. That wasn't the end of her story. Far from it; once outside the chamber, she proceeded to share the content of the letter, which effectively said that Sessions would be an extremely poor choice for attorney general.

Unfortunately, Warren lost her fight, and Sessions was confirmed, but that wasn't the end of Warren's role in all of this. Far from it; in fact, Senator Mitch McConnell added fuel to the fire when he explained, “She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted.”

#ShePersisted has since become a rallying cry of sorts on social media, as well it should. There was no need for Warren to have been treated in the manner in which she was, only for a male senator to be listened to respectfully. If anything, that further supported Warren as the new face of women's rights.

The important observation to take out of all of this is that the #ShePersisted trend is encouraging women everywhere to fight for what they believe in, and for men to keep supporting them.

Warren knew without question that voting for an attorney general who had made racist remarks in the past would not work. She wanted to fight against it, but instead, she was silenced while two other senators, who were both men, were allowed to read either portion of Scott King's letter or the letter in its entirety.

What message can be taken from Warren's actions?

The Power of Persistence

Persistence pays off.

There are no two ways about this. Virtually everyone knows that if you work to achieve something, that something, or some variant of it, will eventually transpire.

Persistence, if nothing else, can be one of your best tools when it comes to trying to overcome any obstacle. Notice what happened after Warren was banned from the Senate floor? She went outside the Senate and was filmed reading the letter aloud. There was no question that people heard her; a cameraman was with her at the time, recording what she was doing, and that is incredibly powerful.

There are people who want to give up during events like black belt testing. Preparing a presentation for school. Going through post-secondary education. It doesn't matter the obstacle or trial. Persistence will help you in the long run, if anything because it further develops character and pushes you to greater heights of accomplishment.

#ShePersisted didn't just raise Senator Warren's already high profile. It serves as a reminder for everyone - especially every woman - to never give up fighting for something they believe in. It reminds people that while the odds might be somehow stacked against what you're trying to do, persistence can help you beat obstacles and help you have your voice heard.

Because really, isn't being heard something we are all fighting for?

This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.