I’ve had a hard time finding words for #BringBackOurGirls. To find words, you see, means to make sense of the thing. And there is no sense—not a single, iota’s worth—in the stealing and selling of little girls whose only “sin” in the eyes of their captors is the desire and outright audacity to feed their minds.
And so when I consider the April kidnapping of almost 300 Nigerian girls—some as young as 12—from their school in a middle-of-the-night raid by a terrorist organization that vehemently believes women’s sole purpose is to marry, take care of their men and homes and birth babies, I go mute, cold and numb all at once. Even more so when their kidnappers, Boko Haram terrorists, brazenly threaten, in the name of Allah, to sell the girls into forced marriages and slavery for $12 a piece—the equivalent of a medium pizza and a cup of tap water.
Still, the 276 students who remain held against their will, deserve our words. So do the 1500 people—many students, children—killed this year alone by Boko Haram. They deserve our tears. They deserve our heartache and angst and demands that something—anything and everything—be done to return the kidnapped girls to their mothers and fathers and people who love them, to their own homes and their own beds, and yes, to the school where they were getting the one thing that could change their lives and the lives of those in their poverty-stricken, war-torn corner of the world: an education.
Our daughters—all of our daughters—also deserve the world’s attention and muscle in the fight against the wicked system of sex trafficking, rape and the modern day enslavement of women and girls. In Africa. In Europe. In the Middle East. And yes, right here in America, in our own backyard.
They are human.
We are human.
And monsters who would gather up humans and sell them or buy them solely because they have vaginas and the wherewithal to cook and clean should be gathered up into one massive hole and sent straight to hell, in the name of all things holy and right and true.
But even as I wish the fiery pit on any person even remotely responsible for the trafficking of girls and women, I wish righteousness, strength and peace for the Nigerian girls stolen into the night. I pray for each of them by name and hold them in my heart. We all should. Say their names when you do.
*Names courtesy of the Christian Association of Nigeria. When the rest of the names are available, I will share them here on MyBrownBaby.
Mom. NY Times bestselling author. Pop culture ninja. Unapologetic lover of shoes, bacon and babies. Nice with the verbs. Founder of the top black parenting website, MyBrownBaby.