Posted on January 19, 2021

By The Breast Cancer Action Team

As the nation braces itself tomorrow for what may take place at the U.S. Capitol and state Capitols throughout the country, the Breast Cancer Action team is sending you a message of care to let you know we are with you.

On Wednesday, January 6th right-wing extremists and white supremacists stormed the Capitol in a gross display of racism, white privilege, and masculinist violence. Since that date, state capitols across the country have faced threats of violence. We know our staff, our members, and our communities are braced against what could take place tomorrow.

January 20th may be a truly painful day, and we hope you are able to take care of yourself, find community with your loved ones, and reach out for support as you need it. Experiencing a violent attempt to overthrow our government is not normal, and we need not proceed as if these are normal circumstances. Although capitalism pushes us to continue working through this trauma without processing it, it is not sustainable to do so. It is an integral part of our anti-racist work to name what we are experiencing and to prioritize self-care and healing in the face of it.

Though violence and insurrection do not show our country in the best light, what is taking place is unmasking the racism and sexism that is insidiously woven into our democracy—and is currently becoming more and more blatant—in the fullest light. For 30 years, we’ve addressed breast cancer through a health justice lens, knowing that differences in breast cancer incidence, mortality, and survival are due to unequal burdens in who faces these forces of systemic oppression and institutionalized racism.

The insurrectionists fighting to stop the peaceful transfer of power to President-Elect Joe Biden and Vice President-Elect Kamala Harris are trying to stop progress. They are standing in opposition to the democratization of our democracy, and the fair treatment of BIPOC communities, queer communities, and womxn.

It is not by chance that the violent acts of sedition we are witnessing are taking place as the first Black woman and the first person of South Asian descent, Kamala Harris, will be sworn in as Vice President. Just as much as the insurrection is about Biden and Harris, it is also about the inclusion of a growing number of women and BIPOC and queer people coming to power. This is equally about Representative Deb Haaland ascending to her role as the first Indigenous Secretary of the Interior. It is not an accident that it was Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s lectern taken by a white man smiling and waving to the camera as he walked away with it.

President-Elect Joe Biden and Vice President-Elect Kamala Harris will be the next leaders of the United States. Breast Cancer Action is ready to work with them, and ready to work with them to address how we move forward and create real equity in light of the current political climate. For 30 years we’ve come together to raise the voices of women, queer, BIPOC, and other historically marginalized folx because we know that when we get to the problems at the root of the breast cancer epidemic, we will build a more just, healthy, and equitable world.

Your support of our organization is powerful. Under the next administration we will continue to call out, challenge, and dismantle systems of oppression to build a world where our lives and our communities are not threatened by racism, sexism, or breast cancer.