I'm so honored to share my comments from the STL Women's March for Truth on Saturday Jan 20, 2018. It was an amazing experience, and I'm so glad I brought my daughter. We've got to start growing our courage young!
I’m Adelaide Lancaster and I’m so honored to be here.
And to be here with my sweet Eloise – who at age 7 ½ has been to more marches and protests – probably in this year alone - than my entire first 35 years combined.
How lucky we are to be here – in this place, at this time, led by these amazing women, and with all of you!
What I want her to see today is PROMISE.
It brings me to tears to know that this is HER NORMAL. This is what her introduction to feminism and womanism looks like. This is her America. This is her St. Louis.
Look at what a beautiful, powerful, and promising view she has!
But as a white mom, and a white feminist I know that I cannot just feed her a diet of promise.
I must also feed her a diet of TRUTH.
You see, promise can only ROOT IN TRUTH. And promise can only BLOOM IN TRUTH.
In that spirit want to share with you today the words of one of my favorite poets, Nayyirah Waheed.
telling the truth you could not face
struck instead of tended.”
These words make me think particularly about the work that my white sisters and I face.
I think about
How often we harm.
How easily we strike.
How little we tend.
And the role of truth in all of that.
So my ask today is of white women in particular.
My hope is that we can learn to tell fuller stories.
In order to UNHARM we must tell a fuller truth.
When we tell a story about under-resourced schools and city services, we must also tell the story of white flight and redlining.
When we tell a story about school segregation, we must also own the role that white moms have played in creating and maintaining that.
When we tell a story about suffrage and voting rights for our mothers and grandmothers, we must also tell a story about exclusion and false promises and how often we say to our black and brown sisters - “next time it’ll be your turn.”
When we tell stories of our own resistance, we must also tell the stories of our own defense, distance, and denial.
When we imagine ourselves part of the solution, we must also see ourselves as part of the problem.
I’m so glad that when I hear stories about last year’s march that it includes stories about learning.
And when we tell the story of today I hope it includes stories about followership, kinship, and how we are learning to honor our fuller community.
I believe that our greatest promise still lies ahead, but first we must start with truth.