#Mothersday Story

You gave me more than you know.

When I was young, my mother was uneducated, had undiagnosed bipolar disorder (then called manic depression), had three children, a husband in jail and was on welfare. She worked under the table as a cleaning lady and motel maid just to make ends meet, and found ways to keep food on the table and a roof over our heads, some of them of dubious legality.

She often was sexually harassed by her employers, and still went to work knowing that this was always going to be something she had to deal with or not get work. She was often harassed by the police in a similar way, and when she didn't play their game, they made it a point to handcuff her and treat her brutally, even though she never resisted them, in full view of the three of us children.

The saddest memory of my very difficult childhood is seeing my mother being taken away in handcuffs and violently forced into the back of a squad car.

When people say, "When did I become politically active or radicalized?" It was at birth, being born poor and seeing as I grew older the unfairness of a system and society that allows those in power to believe they can use those who don't have economic resources and keeps poor people and women in poverty so they can continue to be exploited.

A mother doesn't get what she always wants to do, but a mother does what she has to do. I have made it my life's work to attempt my damn best to ensure no one would have to tell a story like mine here.

She wanted me to be President. Years later, I told her what I wanted to be was the Duke of Earl.

Happy Mother's Day to Mrs. Anna Brown, who gave me more than she will ever realize.

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