On Tuesday, Senator Elizabeth Warren took to the floor of the Senate to share the words of Coretta Scott King, Martin Luther King Jr.’s wife. In a letter written in 1986, King criticized Jeff Sessions—a senator from Alabama and the current attorney general nominee—and explained why she did not see him fit for federal judgeship at the time. As Warren read the letter aloud, she was stopped by Republican senators, who cited an obscure rule as the reasoning behind her silencing. Though she was told to sit down and be quiet, Warren instead continued to read the letter in the hallway, where she live-streamed it on Facebook. After facing backlash for not letting Warren finish her piece, Majority leader Mitch McConnell defended his actions by stating: “She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted.”
And so a new rallying cry for women’s rights was born.
Immediately following McConnell’s statement, the #NeverthelessShePersisted and #ShePersisted hashtags took social media by storm. People began sharing Tweets, Facebook posts, and Instagram pictures of strong female figures who have not given up in the face of adversity, censoring, and discrimination. Accompanied by McConnell’s reclaimed quotation, the posts—which feature feminist and Civil Rights icons like Warren, King, Ruby Bridges, and the Suffragettes—prove that, historically, silencing women only makes them yell louder.
Inspired by the “nevertheless, she persisted” mantra, Twitter users have shared images of the strong female figures that have inspired them, like Elizabeth Warren and Coretta Scott King.
— Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) February 8, 2017
— Nonny Reposts (@nonnygoats) February 8, 2017
They also include Civil Rights icons like Rosa Parks, Ruby Bridges, and Gloria Richardson.
“She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted.” pic.twitter.com/fj3G5ZMiQ1
— John Aravosis (@aravosis) February 8, 2017
— Liz Burr (@calinative) February 8, 2017
— Bryan William Jones (@BWJones) February 8, 2017
As well as contemporary political figures, like Hillary Clinton, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, and Gabrielle Giffords.
— Madam President (@Madam_President) February 9, 2017
— Nancy H (@Nanscrazy) February 8, 2017
“Nevertheless, she persisted.” pic.twitter.com/hSLqCbPAc9
— Mark Frost (@mfrost11) February 8, 2017
And many more powerful females, like Harriet Tubman…
— Heather Matarazzo (@HeatherMatarazz) February 8, 2017
“She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted.” (Emmeline Pankhurst) pic.twitter.com/8dLo8fyR1u
— Cultura (@CulturalGutter) February 8, 2017
Susan B. Anthony…
— Senator Ben Cardin (@SenatorCardin) February 8, 2017
— Charles M. Blow (@CharlesMBlow) February 8, 2017
— Teen Vogue (@TeenVogue) February 8, 2017
And even Lady Liberty.
— Charles Jennings (@cwjennings59) February 8, 2017
“She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted.”
So must we all.https://t.co/JXROGHPNkH
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) February 8, 2017