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When the Southern Poverty Law Group released their “Hate Map” last week, many were surprised to see California lead the nation with 79.

I have deep roots in Southern California. My maternal grandparents were part of the Great Migration, and moved from Jackson, Mississippi, to San Diego when my grandfather joined the Navy in 1955. They eventually settled in Riverside, CA, where my mother and her siblings grew up. My father moved from Cleveland, Ohio, to Perris, CA, a small suburb about 20 minutes outside of Riverside, when he joined the Air Force in 1975. All of them moved here for opportunities they felt didn’t exist where they came from. For my grandparents, the idea of raising children in the Jim Crow South was unfathomable. However, the reality they were met with was not what they expected. Despite the fact that my grandfather came to San Diego to serve in the Navy, they were denied tenancy over and over again. My mother tells stories of growing up in Riverside and being one of only five Black students in her high school. Three were her siblings. My grandmother once told me how she found their family dog murdered, shot in the head. She told her children it ran away.
Related: ALL WHITE PEOPLE ARE SOCIALIZED TO BE RACIST & TINA FEY MADE THAT CLEAR

Marriage does not appear to protect or empower women when they are married as children. Instead, statistics show that early marriage creates a vulnerability for further psychological and health related stress.  

  By Aditi Wahi-Singh
TW- Emotional, physical and sexual abuse.
Olivia was 15-years-old when her grandmother first told 24-year-old John, "You could marry her. I'd let you marry her." Olivia and her grandmother always had a tumultuous relationship because Olivia did not follow her grandmother’s strict religious beliefs or values. Though surprised with the offer from her grandmother, Olivia thought that John could be her way out of a stressful living situation with her grandparents, and John had always seemed like a loving partner. However, soon after Olivia was engaged to John, their relationship started to change. John became very controlling and abusive, and Olivia felt fearful and began to re-think the engagement.    A short time after the abuse began, with the help of John's landlady, Olivia entered his apartment and left her engagement ring on his dresser hoping to end their relationship and move forward with her life. But when John found the ring, he was furious – he took Olivia up a hill, pointed to her grandparent’s house and said he would kill her family if she ever tried something like that again. Fearful and without any options, Olivia never dared to leave after that.
Related: WE OWE DOMESTIC ABUSE SURVIVORS MORE THAN WHAT WE GAVE BRESHA MEADOWS

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