2021 Editorials

Women’s Voices Statement on Jury Verdict in Murder of Ahmaud Arbery

November 24, 2021

Today a jury found three white men guilty of the murder of Ahmaud Arbery. Mr. Arbery was a young black man who was jogging in a Brunswick, Georgia neighborhood when the three convicted men pursued him and shot him. The verdict does not lessen the tragedy of the senseless death of an innocent man. But justice has been served by the mostly white jury. Women’s Voices joins social justice advocates around the country in celebrating the guilty verdict. We remember the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, “the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.”

Women’s Voices Statement on Rittenhouse Verdict

November 19, 2021

Our organization is outraged at the miscarriage of justice in the case of Kyle Rittenhouse. Kyle Rittenhouse is a white teenager who illegally got a “cool” AR-15 rifle. Previously he was shown to be linked with The Proud boys, and flashed white supremacist hand signs. He went to a Black Lives Matter demonstration in Kenosha freely. He brought his gun. No one attacked him until he acted, yet he claimed self-defense. This is one more example of a broken criminal justice system. The outcome indicates that a White person can carry a gun anywhere, provoke violence, and kill people without repercussion. This is an example of vigilante justice for which White people have never been held accountable in this country since the time of slavery. We urge you to do more than just get angry. Here are two things you can do. Sign this petition to add your name to a demand to end gun violence.

Take action by contacting your elected officials.

Women’s Voices Statement on the naming of Homer G. Phillips Urgent Care

September 18, 2021

Members of Women’s Voices stand with our Black friends and neighbors to decry the use of the name “Homer G. Phillips Hospital” for a three-bed urgent care center in north city.

The efforts of Homer G. Phillips, an attorney and influential civil rights advocate, were instrumental in the creation of a major hospital in the Ville area. This hospital, named after him, trained countless Black physicians and nurses who continue to serve the community, and provided quality health care for thousands of St. Louisans. It should never have been closed.

It is arrogant and disrespectful for a developer to appropriate this name for a minor facility without any input from members of the community. While we applaud the intent to create a health care facility in north St. Louis, we believe that names are important and should be handled with care.

The appropriation of a beloved, respected name in this way is both inappropriate and offensive. We hope that developer Paul McKee will demonstrate some measure of understanding and respect to the community where his facility is located.

Statement in response to Texas Abortion Care Ban

September 5, 2021

Women’s Voices denounces the new anti-abortion care law just passed in Texas that effectively makes abortion care illegal in Texas. Planned Parenthood notes that five justices — Amy Coney Barrett, Brett Kavanaugh, Neil Gorsuch, Samuel Alito, and Clarence Thomas — ruled to let the abortion care ban take effect. This means that Texas can start its cruel and dangerous bounty-hunting scheme that empowers private citizens and even strangers to accuse anyone they want of breaking the law and drag them to court. They’ve turned their back on the fundamental rights of millions of people.

The impact of this heinous abortion care ban cannot be overstated. It will overwhelmingly harm Black and Latinx people, people with low incomes, and people in rural areas, who already face immense barriers to health care access. The unjust burden of this law falls disproportionately on those who can least afford it.

Justice Sonia Sotomayor, in her dissent, called the measure “a flagrantly unconstitutional law engineered to prohibit women from exercising their constitutional rights and evade judicial scrutiny.” She concluded: “Last night, the Court silently acquiesced in a State’s enactment of a law that flouts nearly 50 years of federal precedents.”

We at Women’s Voices urge you to join volunteers and activists around the country in the fight for reproductive freedom. Show your support for critical legislation, raise funds for groups (such as Fund Texas Choice) providing care on the ground, or get education on the issues from our partners in the fight. Urge Congress to pass the Women’s Health Protection Act to codify Roe V. Wade into law and override the Texas Ban and the Supreme Court decision to make abortion illegal.

Statement in response to the Julia Ho incident

August 13, 2021

Women’s Voices Raised for Social Justice is appalled that a noose – an overt hate symbol- was hung on the property of Julia Ho in her Benton Park neighborhood. Clearly this act was meant to send the message that Ms. Ho and the Black construction workers on her property are not welcome.  The incident is yet another example of the fear and prejudice that lie so close to the surface, and it serves to remind us of the tremendous work that is still needed.  We recommit our efforts to build bridges, to examine our own white privilege, and to reduce personal prejudice as well as the systemic racism that has led to inequity in our society.

Statement on the verdict in the Chauvin trial in the death of George Floyd

April 21, 2021

Women’s Voices Raised for Social Justice was relieved to learn that the jury found former police officer Derek Chauvin guilty of all three charges. We are encouraged that in this case the system worked as it should and that the jury provided accountability. Hopefully this marks a turning point, a beginning, of an American criminal justice and law enforcement system that is fair to people of color. Women’s Voices is renewing its commitment to work for an equitable criminal justice system and for racial equity and justice. 

Statement on the January 6, 2021 events at the U.S. Capitol

January 7, 2021

Members of Women’s Voices Raised for Social Justice are outraged at the actions of the domestic terrorists who attempted to take over the national Capitol on Jan. 6 and block the peaceful transfer of power to President-Elect Joe Biden and Vice-President-Elect Kamala Harris. As alarming as it was, the failure of their attempt confirms that we are a nation of laws that holds its Constitution sacred. We are appalled at the words and actions of President Donald Trump, whose baseless claims of voter fraud fueled fires of doubt about the election’s integrity in the minds of many of his supporters. We are disgusted that he encouraged the march on the Capitol and praised the terrorists. Of equally great concern is Missouri Senator Josh Hawley, whose words and actions also fomented distrust in the election results. His blatant pandering to President Trump to further his own political career is abhorrent. We encourage you to join Women’s Voices in urging him to resign. His behavior has clearly shown that he is not able to represent us. You can reach him at (202) 224-6154.

Finally, we must confront the fact that these domestic terrorists, who were mostly white men, were treated much differently from protestors who have taken to the streets in support of the Black Lives Matter movement. Peaceful protestors who have been marching for racial, economic and social justice have regularly been subjected to violence at the hands of law enforcement. 

Women’s Voices Raised for Social Justice does not condone violence in any manner. We believe it is time for everyone to base their behavior on knowledge of the facts, adherence to the truth, and a belief that all people are worthy of dignity and respect.