Jessie McGuire Dent had never been a shrinking violet. When she saw bad things happening, she got involved. She’d worked together with her sorority sisters to fight the racism in the women’s suffrage movement. Now she was about to make a change with another group of her peers.
Dent was a public school teacher, and she noticed that she and her fellow Black teachers had the exact same education, experience, and workload as white teachers, yet were paid MUCH less. Dent called attention to this – but after getting ignored or talked down to by white administrators, she decided, in 1943, to sue!
Dent’s actions improved life for her entire town. As Dent’s success shows, when we act in the best interests of ourselves and our community, we can have a huge impact. It is possible to improve our own lives and those of our community members as we fight for our rights!