July marks the time of the year when a Black woman’s earnings finally catch up to a white man’s earnings from the previous year – a startling timeline representation of the largest pay gap. Black women only earn 64 cents for every dollar a white man makes. As much as this might spark somber reflection on the economic and racial inequality that persists in our nation, it is also a time of celebration. On July 16th we celebrated the birthday of fearless social justice activist, suffragist, politician, and journalist Ida B. Wells-Barnett.
Yesterday, the Echoing Ida collective – a group of women of color writers grounded in the legacy of Ida B. Wells-Barnett – hosted a Tweetchat in honor of the activist’s legacy. What was apparent in the #IdasLegacy conversation is that Mrs. Wells-Barnett continues to inspire a new generation of activists who are fighting for social justice and working to redress some of the same issues from her time. Unfortunately, many of the social ills that plagued Black people during her time still plague us today.