Bernie Sanders to speak at Women's Convention at Cobo

Bernie Sanders to speak at Women's Convention at Cobo

"Senator Sanders has been a fierce champion of women's rights and bolstering female voices throughout his career of public service", said Tamika Mallory, Women's March Co-President, in a press release.

"I think that right now, no one can deny that Bernie Sanders is probably one of the most powerful US senators. on progressive issues, women's issues, mobilizing millennials".

"He really is in line with the principles of the Women's March", said Mallory.

The Women's March on January 21 was possibly the largest single-day demonstration in USA history, with up to 5.25 million people taking part across the country.

Becky Scott is the editor of The Schmooze.

On the opening night of the first Women's Convention in decades, more than 3,000 women and progressive activists will hear from a white man. In January, millions of women came out in an extraordinary and unprecedented display of power and resistance. But some were unable to get past the fact that Sanders, a man, has been selected for a prime speaking slot at a women's event. This would be the first Women's Convention held in 40 years.

Several Twitter users simply expressed their disappointment with Sander's planned participation.

The convention aims to have participants leave inspired and motivated, with new connections, skills and strategies for working towards collective liberation for women of all races, ethnicities, ages, abilities, sexual identities, gender expressions, immigration statuses, religious faiths, and economic statuses.

At a 2015 Democratic debate hosted by CNN, Sanders said: "As a senator from a rural state, what I can tell Secretary Clinton, that all the shouting in the world is not going to do what I would hope all of us want, and that is keep guns out of the hands of people who should not have those guns and end this awful violence that we are seeing".

As the firestorm over Senator Sanders continued spreading on social media throughout the afternoon, the Women's Convention put out a statement on its Instagram page, suggesting that the organizers' hand was forced, in part, by scheduling conflicts. "So we can know what we need to do to be able organize". The movement is seeking to build on that legacy by hosting its maiden convention in Detroit later in October. On their website, it says the convention is supposed to bring together "thousands of women, femmes and our allies of all backgrounds", so they hired Bernie Sanders, a white man, to speak on opening night.

MSNBC political analyst Joan Walsh remarked sarcastically: 'Might just be me, but I'd have loved to see a woman keynote the Women's Convention'.

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