We Are The Cultivators

Image from Marvel's  Black Panther

Image from Marvel's Black Panther

by: Minda Harts, Founder, The Memo


Let’s get into IT!

Before some of you start to panic, today’s MEMO does not include any spoilers, so you can rest easy if you haven’t seen the movie Black Panther.

I have so many questions about Wakanda. Most importantly, is the Wifi better there? Because if so, I’m packing up my French Bulldog Boston, and we are on the first plane out of JFK! But in all seriousness, I truly enjoyed the representation of beautiful black men and women in the film.

When I walked out of the theatre, I could only imagine how young children of color might feel after being exposed to superheroes that look like them. I know what seeing Clair Huxtable did for me as a child. Each week, I watched as Clair lived her upper-middle-class life in a Brooklyn brownstone while encouraging her children to attend college. Because of her, I felt emboldened to pursue my piece of the American dream. By the age of ten, I swore to myself that I would climb the ladder of success and make Mrs. Huxtable proud!

In the words of rapper Kanye West, “I ain’t one of the Cosby’s, I ain’t go to Hillman” -- however, I was the first person in my family to graduate from college. It’s not lost on me how that imagery played a huge role in what my definition of success was.

Similarly, I’m excited to see how Black Panther manifests in the lives of children of color all over the world.

As we continue to celebrate Black History month, I encourage you to never stop celebrating us!

We don’t need Wakanda, we need each other! Together we can change the narrative on the way our stories are told. We don’t have to subscribe to the "angry black woman," the "docile asian," or the "fiesty latina!" We have the ability to control our own narratives. So today, tomorrow, and for years to come, we celebrate strong women of color. And we are just getting started!

Women of color are strong, powerful, loving, vulnerable, and BEAUTIFUL. And if at any point this week you need a reminder of how dope you are, this phenomenal video featuring actress Yara Shahidi, should do the trick!