In a week of turmoil and tumult that tested America’s battered democracy, let us not forget how Stacey Abrams swallowed the pain of a deeply unfair loss in 2018 and turned it into a win for Georgians, and for the nation. Her quest for justice for all stands in sharp contrast to Donald Trump's pursuit of power for its own sake.
Many of us remember the prophetic ‘non-concession’ speech that Stacey Abrams delivered after losing her 2018 gubernatorial bid. Abrams had good reason to be angry: Her opponent, Brian Kemp, had leveraged his power as Secretary of State to disenfranchise hundreds of thousands of voters, enabling him to win his race by the narrowest of margins.
Unlike Trump, Abrams said, “Now, I could certainly bring a new case to keep this one contest alive, but I don’t want to hold public office if I need to scheme my way into the post. Because the title of Governor isn’t nearly as important as our shared title: Voters.”
Unlike Trump, Abrams didn’t channel her anger to inciting supporters to violence. “I implore each of you to not give in to that anger or apathy but instead turn to action. Because the antidote to injustice is progress. The cure to this malpractice is a fight for fairness in every election held, in every law passed, in every decision made.”
Then, she turned her words into action. She created Fair Fight, a nonprofit organization that promotes integrity and accountability in Georgia’s voting process and elections. Fair Fight succeeded beyond anyone’s wildest dreams.
Fair Fight’s work led to this season’s free and fair elections in Georgia and also reached beyond Georgia’s borders. The group offered expertise and support to fighting voter suppression and election threats across the country.
Today, let us recommit to following Stacey Abram’s prophetic rallying cry.
We will stand strong.
We won’t give in to apathy or to anger.
We will respond with dignity and quietly resume our work towards progress.