Happy Birthday: Breonna Taylor

Breonna Taylor

#Sayhername

Who was Breonna Taylor?

Breonna Taylor, affectionately called Bre by her family and friends, was born on June 5th, 1993. Today she would have celebrated her 27th birthday.  As a teenager, she moved with her family to Louisville, Kentucky.  And attended Westen High School, where she met her best friends Erinicka Hunter and Shatanis Vaughn.  They became “The Three Amigos.”

Bre was known as a kind, cool girl who cared about others and was a decent human being. She enjoyed playing card games–especially phase 10 and Skip-Bo. 

Bre worked in the Health Care field as an EMT. She enjoyed caring for others.  “It makes me happy, knowing I’m making a difference in someone’s life,” she’s once shared about working in Health Care.  Her dreams were to one day become a nurse, buy a home of her own, and raise a family. 

Breonna Taylor was a Black Woman.  She was a daughter, a niece, a friend, a girlfriend, and a coworker.  And although she didn’t have unrealistic and elaborate dreams, she never lived to realize the ones she did have. 

What Happened to her?

Just after midnight on March 13th Breonna Taylor was shot at least eight times when police officers discharged showers of gunfire into her home. Police officers who were executing a “no-knock warrant” issued by a judge.  A warrant which allowed the officers to barraged Taylor’s home without knocking or identifying themselves as police officers.

It is reported that police officers were investigating two men who were selling drugs out of a house located near Breonna Taylor’s home.

Why should we be talking about Breonna Taylor?

Breonna Taylor and other black women killed by police officers need to be a part of the larger narrative for justice.  As women, our experiences with police brutality or harassment is not often a part of the discussion.  We have faced racial and gender discrimination for many years.  And although our efforts have played a significant role in social justice, we are often left out of conversations sounding those changes.

The Black woman needs to be a part of the larger picture of justice. I am not trying to take anything away from the conversations we’re having about the unlawful and fatal deaths of our black men, but the Black women must be remembered and included.

We need to be a part of the dialogue and not just as an afterthought.  There have been are many cases of police brutality and biases against black women.

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As a woman and a black woman, I have felt and seen the results of having two strikes against me. “Two Strikes against me” is a phrase I started using in my 20’s when I began to understand the prejudices of being a woman and the blatant racism I experienced as a black woman in this country.

I’ve always joked about being two minorities rolled into one. But the truth is, it’s serious business.  Our lives aren’t more comfortable than men. We have to fight just as hard or even harder. More black women live in poverty than any other group of women. We suffer a higher rate of domestic violence (even today), and we are still poorly represented in the political system

We experience being pulled over in traffic stops more often than our white counterparts.  And suffer sexual assaults that are never discussed or documented.

The racial biases that black men face, we’re not exempt, we experience them as well.  As black women we have to work harder to be heard, to be understood, and to be enough, Every day we have to prove to be worthy of a place in society, in the workplace and sometimes in our homes. 

We should talk about Breanna Taylor because her life mattered. The movement, Black Lives Matter, was created by three women who were outraged over the court’s decision regarding 17-year-old Trayvon Martin’s trial. Yet women aren’t in the conversation for justice as much as they should be. 

I don’t want black men vs. black women conversation because we matter equally.  The aim isn’t to compete with black men. We know the struggles our black men face with police aggression and brutality.  Because we have all had sleepless nights worrying about our fathers, our sons, our husbands, our brothers, our boyfriends, or family members—praying they get home safely from work or school (this is a real worry for many of us).

I simply want us to remember that the lives of black women matter as well.  We have always been a part of the conversation about racism and justice.  But we are never at the forefront of those conversations, and it’s time we are. 

What can we do right now to help Breonna Taylor?

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I stumbled on an Instagram account by Cate Young @battymamzelle, which lead me to a website—I’d like to share that with you here.  It provides us with ten actionable items we can do to celebrate Breonna’s life.

If you have any additional information to share with us, please feel free to email them or tag us on Instagram.

As always, I’m sending Love. Stay Safe.

Cheers to Breonna Taylor! Happy Birthday.  You were taken too soon but will always be in our memories.

XXOO

Nat

 

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