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'Does My Story Matter? Yes, It Does': Black Women Rally Against Abuse And Injustice

Dozens of people assembled on Saturday to share stories of oppression and demand a better world for themselves and each other.

The event, Women Against Injustice, was held at the Carver Community Cultural Center on San Antonio's East Side. The event's Facebook page explained that it was meant to "uplift the voices of Black women!"

Participants began the event by recounting absuive experiences and lifelong oppression.

One speaker asked listeners how many of them had been objectified or sexually assaulted before the age of 15. Several women raised their hands.

"Does my story matter?" one speaker wondered aloud. "Yes, it does. Why? Because I'm a Black woman leading a Black life, and mine matters."

Artist Dajiyah Mcae was among the speakers, and she led the march to Pittman-Sullivan Park.

"Maybe the world should accept that black women are just people and we have sadness and we have a lot of trauma," she said later. "No Black woman you’ll ever meet will come in without any trauma because to be a Black woman is to be a warrior."

Mcae added, "Today was very important to me because when you hear about the horrors of police brutality against Black and brown Americans, it is generally focused on men. Women get lost in the media."

She said growing up with little representation in the media and having to fight against the stereotype of being a Black woman was hard.

"Oftentimes we’re told we need to take on the weight of the world and do it with a smile," she explained, "because we’re supposed to be strong Black women, but maybe we don’t need to be warriors anymore."

About 100 participants marched to the park. They carried signs that read "Women are fragile, not like flowers but like bombs," "I will fight for you, me, us" and "Stop killing Black people."

Once at the park, they continued their discussions and enjoyed yoga.

Also on the East Side, members of the Black Lives Matter movement gathered at Lockwood Park to share speeches, register voters and perform slam poetry.

Earlier on Saturday, demonstrators condemned the Christopher Columbus statue and faced off against armed counter demonstrators. Police intervened at times to keep the groups apart as tempers flared amid debates over history, racism, slavery and rape.

As that event ended, some participants headed to Lockwood Park, to the Carver Community Cultural Center event or to other marches and rallies around San Antonio.

Jolene Almendarez can be reached at JoleneAlmendarez@gmail.com and on Twitter at @jalmendarez57.

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