The ‘We Matter’ Manifesto


“African American women control over $400 billion in buying power, which is over 60% of the total African American buying power of $649 billion.”

– The Selig Center for Economic Growth

We are livid that we have to acquiesce to get a paycheck.

We are furious that we have had to give up who we are to make it in this world.

We are sick of brilliant Black women, whose womb birth—literally—the greatest country in the Free World, are still stuck in a plantation payment plan:  earning it, proving it, making it—creating someone else’s wealth.

We are irate that whites don’t have to put shackles on us any longer to keep us enslaved. The golden handcuffs of corporate America or the Ivory Tower of education serve the same function.

We are seething and fed up that we are so wounded we put ourselves in emotional bondage and self-sacrifice.

We are sick of begging and being disposable.

We are sick of having to apologize for other’s incompetence or insecurity.

We are sooooooooooooo done with being thrown under the bus.

We are done with Black women having to submit, cower, or even fight to have a place in this world.

We are furious that Black women entrepreneurs have to go to White mentors—who don’t give a crap about us—to learn but get ostracized, pigeonholed, or are positioned as a pet or as threat.

*Online marketing is supposed to be universal and colorless—well it looks awfully White to me.

(I’m just sayin’…)

Hear me out.

I am not saying White business mentors are not great at what they do.

I am not saying White business mentors are racist.

I am not even saying White business mentors are mean, bad, or malicious.


They are just White.

They don’t have a clue about what it means to be a Black Woman entrepreneur and the historical wounds that still haunt us.

And if one more person says, “we are all the same” or “race doesn’t matter”, we are going to pimp slap them across the room.

They don’t say that about gender.

They don’t say that about class.

They don’t say that about sexuality.

(The Ellen DeGeneres Show is killin’ it.)

Race—even in this Obama era—matters.

We matter.

As a group, if you took Black women out of the equation of world history, there would be no world.

(Holla if you hear me.)

We have intrinsic worth and inherit value beyond the brawn of our bodies and the fertility of our wombs.

We are more than somebody’s mother, more than somebody’s wife.

We are more than somebody’s workhorse, scapegoat, or punching bag.

We are the catalyst to world change.

We changed the world through slavery.

We changed the world through women’s rights—“I too am a woman!”

We changed the world through civil rights.

Without us, there was no movement—

Without us there is no movement.

The economy would collapse.

There would be no black church.

There would be no Obama-care.

There would be no BET.

(Sylvia Robinson made hip-hop commercial—not Kurtis Blow.)

We matter.

We have to heal our hearts so that we can heal the world.

We are the catalyst for a world that works for everyone.  That means no one is left out or behind.

*YOU are the one we have been waiting for. *

Welcome home…to yourself.

Here me when I say to you, my sister:

You matter…here.

You are needed…here.

You are wanted…here. Now.

You are respected…here.

You are loved beyond measure…here.

You are admired…here.

You are heard…here. Now.

You are seen…here.

You are valued…here.

You are embraced…here.

You are the one we’ve been waiting for.



*We are bigger than our bruises. *

Hear me.

I know. I know.

They said it couldn’t be done.

It would never happen.

Who do we think we are? (We have felt that one a lot.)

They said we were wrong.




The said we were chattel.


Something to be used, pimped, then disregarded.

They said we’d never make it.

Never last.

Never amount to anything.

Be somebody.

They said we brought it on ourselves.

We were too much.

Too loud. Too demanding. Too strong.

They said we were not enough.

Not pretty enough. Smart enough. White enough. (subtly in one way or the other)


Over time…

We believed them.

So we started to self-censor.

We stopped speaking up.

We stopped talking back.

We started to settle.

We started to make do to get by.

Now making do and making it work has become a way of life.

But deep down…

We knew in our hearts; they were wrong.

We knew in our gut that this wasn’t right.

We knew in our soul and our spirit we were more than this.

Then it happened.

A simple tremor in the Universe.

A quiet quiver in the stratosphere.

A smoldering quake in consciousness.

With nothing, from the bottom up, there came a mighty deep baritone rumbling.

Spirit deep.

But by the time it reached our lips, it had become a mighty roar!

We matter.

It’s a new day.

It’s our time.

Times have changed.

People have changed.

There is a Black man in the White House.

They said it couldn’t be done.

Hell, we said it couldn’t be done.

They were wrong.

We were wrong.

We were wrong about ourselves.

What if we are not chattel, property sold to the highest bidder for a good job, a steady paycheck, health insurance, or a tight 401k?

What if we could heal our dowry of wounds bestowed upon us by our mothers so our daughters don’t get the same inheritance, multiplied?

What if we stopped hurting ourselves with food, empty sex, and relationships where we give way too much?

What if we stopped hiding at church or at work because we are afraid to come home to an empty bed, a loveless marriage, are an abusive spouse/lover?

What if we stopped believing and behaving like we have to sacrifice to be loved, belong, or be liked?

What if we were no longer secretly afraid if we change, we would lose people, approval, acceptance, and love?

What if took ourselves inside ourselves and healed our own hearts so we could claim our rightful place at the top?

What if we lived every aspect of our lives like we mattered…to ourselves?

(Take a moment right now, and inhale deeply 5 times. Close you eyes. Put you hand over your heart and say to you, as a sacred prayer, “I Matter. To Me.” Exhale. Repeat until you believe it. Repeat until you are moved to tears by how magnificent you are and all ways have been. Open your eyes. You are your own best thing. Go on. Do it now. I will wait for you…)

Walk with me for a minute and just imagine…

…living a life where the history of hurt no longer hinders us…

What if we loved, honored, and respected the God in us, as us?

What if we emancipated ourselves—emotionally, mentally, and financially?

What if we set our own selves free—so we NEVER have to slave again?

Dr. Venus Opal Reese is a staggeringly effective Business Mentor for Black Women, whose in the business of teaching purpose-driven high achieving sisters (who’ve walked through life’s fire) how to create, grow, or leverage a 6 or 7 figure business that is rooted in their worth. Because she too has walk through life’s fire—and turned it into a proven business model that generates millions for my clients—she knows what it takes to produce unprecedented results. Visit today for your free training and more information.

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