Home » Kamala Harris is not here to be the mammy Drew Barrymore wants her to be

Kamala Harris is not here to be the mammy Drew Barrymore wants her to be

by The Grio

Editor’s note: The following article is an op-ed, and the views expressed are the author’s own. Read more opinions on theGrio.

Imagine me standing on top of a soapbox and yelling this at the top of my lungs through a bullhorn in the middle of Times Square:

Stop asking Black women to save America. 

This is a thing that shouldn’t have to be said at all, but it keeps coming back up because of the mammification (did I make that word up or did someone else do it?) of Black women — that thing (some) white people do when they try to turn Black women into the fixers of everything — and not fixers in the Olivia Pope getting paid millions of dollars to make things go away sense, but fixers in the sense of the Black mammies on plantations and in Jim Crow households who held white people’s hands during “trying” times for them, nursed their children, cooked, cleaned and fed the entire household, and then made everything else better just by being present as a Black woman.

There are some white people who recognize our magic even if they don’t want to openly acknowledge it, and even as they do everything in their power to demean and diminish us, they want all the parts of us that they don’t have for themselves – including our spirits. 

The most recent example of a white person asking a Black woman to save America came in the form of Drew Barrymore on a recent episode of her talk show.


Vice President Kamala Harris was a guest Monday on “The Drew Barrymore” show, and she appeared in front of an audience comprised of all women.

Among other things, they discussed Harris’ marriage to second gentleman Doug Emhoff and her relationship with his two children, Cole and Ella. 

Harris told Barrymore that in their household, they don’t use the word “step,” and instead, the children call the VP “Momala.” She talked about how she and the children’s mother, Kerstin, are…

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