Tina Knowles-Lawson is urging that Congress protect voter’s rights amid the coronavirus pandemic. On Thursday, the mother to singer-songwriters Beyoncé Knowles Carter and Solange, along with Mothers of the Movement and a host of Black women in Hollywood, sent an open letter to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer. They are asking that the Senate vote to pass the HEROES Act, a bill that would provide additional stimulus payments to American families while ensuring voting safety in the upcoming elections.
“This past month has culminated in a moment of reckoning for the country. As members of the Black community, we are hurting, we are angry, and we are anguished by the repeated assaults on Black bodies, brought to light once again by the recent murders of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor at the hands of what has for too long been incorrectly coined ‘justice,’” the letter reads. “But even in this moment, when we feel despair and deep exhaustion, we remember one essential truth: our voices have power.”
The letter puts emphasis on the need for Black and Brown voters to be able to safely exercise their civic duty and right in order to make the necessary changes to fight systemic racism. Written in partnership with And Still I Vote, a campaign by The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, it also sites ongoing voter suppression in places like Kentucky and Georgia, and the rise in COVID-19 infections following the Wisconsin elections, as reasons why the Senate should stop stalling on the bill and pass the legislation ASAP.
“In passing this legislation, you will take an affirmative step toward declaring that Black lives matter,” the open letter continues. “You will help build an America as good as its ideals. And you will lead the country – thanks to the creation of a more accountable democracy in which all Americans’ voices are heard.”
This is not the first time Knowles-Lawson has used her voice in the political area. Earlier this year the Houston native proudly backed Amanda K. Edwards, a former at-large member for the Houston City Council, when she was running to unseat John Cornyn in the United States Senate. She’s now hoping she can use her platform to help usher in effective change throughout all Black and Brown communities.