Wendy Davis is the former Texas senator best known for her 2013 fight to protect women’s rights. She filibustered the Texas Senate in pink tennis shoes for 11 hours to block a bill that restricted abortion access in the historically conservative state. Although her filibuster was cut short, the bill didn’t survive. Sadly, when she ran for governor, she lost to Republican Greg Abbott by 20 points.
Davis is out of office, but her fight for women’s rights continues. Instead of campaigning for office, she is campaigning for millennials to get involved by creating the movement Deeds Not Words, named after the suffragette motto. She hopes to empower millennial feminists to act in support, rather than just speaking in support.
This week she was interviewed by famed tech journalist Kara Swisher of Re/Code. Davis says that hateful speech against women, whether it is done in the media or on the internet, must be shut down and called out for the misogyny that it is.
“#BlackLivesMatter started as a hashtag, but it led to unbelievable and impactful activism,” Davis says. While the comparison of the two is certainly questionable (and possibly in poor taste, influenced by white privilege), yes, it did start as a hashtag that has had an absolutely integral impact on American politics.
“We will not be quieted. We will not be silenced. We will continue with these conversations and we will continue to call it out when we see it,” Davis says. “They win when we leave the conversation.”