Happy Mother’s Day to the women who turned their grief into political action

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On April 26, a group of mothers gathered in Chicago, Illinois to hold a vigil for families who have lost loved ones to police violence in the city. These women — including Dorothy Holmes, the mother of Ronald Johnson, who was shot and killed by Chicago Police in 2014 — demanded police accountability. The women pointed out the string of violations by the Chicago Police Department and called to defund the police.

In the most difficult circumstances — especially after experiencing great personal loss — mothers often turn their grief and despair into political action.

The activism of these women in 2021 follows in the footsteps of many mothers who came before them, including Mamie Till-Mobley, the mother of 14-year-old Emmett Till, who was lynched while visiting relatives in Mississippi in 1955. In the aftermath of her son’s tragic death, Till-Mobley became one of the leading voices demanding justice and calling for an end to state-sanctioned…

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