I got the gavel, and I’m not afraid to use it

Thank you very much, Congresswoman Maxine Waters.

Last night Congresswoman Waters (D – Cal) received the Chairman’s Award at the 50th NAACP Image Awards.  Her acceptance speech included the following:

“After a long career journey, tonight I stand before you as the first woman and the first African American to chair the powerful U. S. House Financial Services Committee. It is indeed an honor to hold the chairwoman’s gavel and yes, I got the gavel, and I’m not afraid to use it.”   (Katherine Schaffstall, Hollywood Reporter)

Today marks the last day of Women’s History Month, and I’m ending it with a bang – the sound of a gavel struck by a powerful Congresswoman who was celebrated for her service to her country for her many years in Congress as a lawmaker.

Whether we are making laws or trying to change them, I believe every woman has a gavel and the right to use it without fear. When we speak up for what we know is right and believe to be true, when we reach out to help others who may not be able to ask for our help, when we take a stand against injustice in any form – we honor the memories of the women who came before us and rightly celebrate the women of today and tomorrow…not just during Women’s History Month but every day.

Stay tuned.


About Sheila Morris

Sheila Morris is a personal historian, essayist with humorist tendencies, lesbian activist, truth seeker and speaker in the tradition of other female Texas storytellers including her paternal grandmother. In December, 2017, the University of South Carolina Press published her collection of first-person accounts of a few of the people primarily responsible for the development of LGBTQ organizations in South Carolina. Southern Perspectives on the Queer Movement: Committed to Home will resonate with everyone interested in LGBTQ history in the South during the tumultuous times from the AIDS pandemic to marriage equality. She has published five nonfiction books including two memoirs, an essay compilation and two collections of her favorite blogs from I'll Call It Like I See It. Her first book, Deep in the Heart: A Memoir of Love and Longing received a Golden Crown Literary Society Award in 2008. Her writings have been included in various anthologies - most recently the 2017 Saints and Sinners Literary Magazine. Her latest book, Four Ticket Ride, was released in January, 2019. She is a displaced Texan living in South Carolina with her wife Teresa Williams and their dogs Spike, Charly and Carl. She is also Naynay to her two granddaughters Ella and Molly James who light up her life for real. Born in rural Grimes County, Texas in 1946 her Texas roots still run wide and deep.
This entry was posted in Lesbian Literary, Life, Personal, politics, racism, Reflections, Slice of Life, The Way Life Is and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to I got the gavel, and I’m not afraid to use it

  1. cindy knoke says:

    Good for you and bravo Chairwoman Waters!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Bob Slatten says:

    I hope more and more women discover their gavels.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Susanne says:

    You finished off your month long tribute with a “bang” that’s for sure. 😉

    On a separate, but similar note, have you read the novel “The Invention of Wings” by Sue Monk Kidd? I flagged a page in the Author’s Note section at the end that made me think of you. The author kept this quote above her desk as she wrote the novel “History is not just facts and events. History is also a pain in the heart and we repeat history until we are able to make another’s pain in the heart our own.”

    Liked by 1 person

    • I haven’t read, but Pretty, who is the fiction reader in our family has read and liked very much. (I just asked her.) The quote is fabulous – I love it – and I will add to my collection of memorable quotes. Thanks so much for thinking of me – it’s one of those I wish I had written.


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