In Wonder Curl’s Healthy Hair Summit, Assembly Woman Angela V. McKnight joined us to talk about natural hair and activism. She is the first African-American woman to be elected in the 2015 New Jersey district elections. She is still serving in her 3rd term. ASW McKnight is also a sponsor of the Crown Act.
The CROWN Act:
The CROWN (Create a Respectful and Open World for Natural Hair) Act is a law that prohibits race discrimination based on traits historically associated with the race. This includes but not limited to hair texture, hair type, and protective hairstyles.
ASW McKnight said that we as black women should support and empower each other. If you see a problem and if you feel that there should be some change in the policy you should reach out to the local government representatives. As the change happens from the grassroots. She encourages you to attend the public meeting as you can convey your message and tell a problem so that they can look for a solution together. Get involved in this because if you are not involved you can’t complain.
Embrace Natural Hair:
ASW McKnight preaches to wear your natural hair as they are. She said to embrace what hair type and texture you have and not to worry about what other people think. You need to learn about how to care for your natural hair and love your hair the way it is. Just loving your hair natural hair is a form of activism.
She also tells about the harms of putting your natural hair into processes such as chemically straightening and using wigs. This doesn’t only harm our health but also affects our mental state that we should be like a certain way to get accepted by society. She adds that we should get knowledge about caring for natural hair and wear them as we like.
ASW Angela McKnight encourages us to vote and tells us more about how even a single vote matters. She also tells us about the importance of census as it is important to get the required funding for your municipality from the federal government. So we have to start acting not just speaking.
In conclusion, we need more black women at the table where we can voice the issues and bring problems to the forefront. The natural hair community is vast and together we can make the change through activism by fighting for our rights, and embracing ourselves. Natural hair and activism have gone hand-in-hand as long as we have been a part of this country.