Megan Thee Stallion had a huge 2020, but one of the highlights you may have missed is a letter she got from Rep. Maxine Waters shouting out the rapper’s New York Times op-ed speaking up for Black women.
“One of the highlights of my year was getting a letter from Congress Woman @repmaxinewaters I am so honored to be recognized by such an amazing woman and I promise to keep using my voice and encourage others to use theirs !” the artist wrote alongside a copy of the letter from Waters she received in November honoring the “WAP” rapper’s powerful opinion piece in which she argued that the idea of protecting Black women shouldn’t be controversial.
“I read the op-ed you wrote that appeared in The New York Times recently and I can’t thank you enough for bringing much needed attention to the plight of Black women, not just here in the United States — but everywhere,” Waters wrote in the letter reposted by Megan. “You are so right that Black women have paved the way and have done so by leading with courage and bravery. There is also this notion, which you touched upon, that we as Black women have the ability to bear a heavier burden than everyone else in this society.”
Democrat Waters, who has represented California’s 43rd congressional district since 1991, is the most senior of the 12 Black women in Congress, and is currently the chairwoman of the Committee on Financial Services.
The rapper’s NYT essay, accompanied by a video, was entitled “Megan Thee Stallion: Why I Speak Up for Black Women,” and it dove into the her feelings about how Black women are disrespected and disregarded, using her recent experience as a victim of a violent incident as an example. “I was recently the victim of an act of violence by a man. After a party, I was shot twice as I walked away from him,” she wrote, in reference to the July 12 incident in which rapper Tory Lanez is accused of firing four shots from outside his vehicle, with two bullets hitting Megan in the feet.
“Even as a victim, I have been met with skepticism and judgment,” she continued. “The way people have publicly questioned and debated whether I played a role in my own violent assault proves that my fears about discussing what happened were, unfortunately, warranted.”
The op-ed also drew support from Vice President elect Sen. Kamala Harris before she and President-elect Joe Biden decisively defeated one-term President Donald Trump in November. Harris tweeted, “Black women DO deserve better. I promise when @JoeBiden and I are elected, we’ll continue to show up not just with lip service, but with action.”
In her note, Waters also noted that Black women “are a glue” for their families and communities, as well as a crucial part of the nation’s fabric. “We see that — in your career and your tremendous success, despite the obstacles that have come your way.” The bottom line, Waters wrote, is that she is “incredibly proud” of Megan’s success and how she’s used her voice to uplift fellow Black women. “I know that Black women and girls everywhere thank you for the way you so fiercely have their back,” she said. “I want you to know that I have your back, too.”
Read the full letter here.