Fannie Lou Hamer, Pro-Life Civil Rights Leader
Mississippi activist experienced racial hatred in all its forms, including forced sterilization.
Black History Month should be a time of celebration of achievement and honest reflection on the impediments to freedom for all. As we look at those whose lives changed history, it’s quite evident that these champions for freedom have predominantly risen from the most impoverished and seemingly impossible situations. Civil rights leader Fannie Lou Hamer is one of many who broke through the generational shackles of poverty to live a life devoted to helping free others from the same bondage.
Fannie Lou (Townshend) Hamer was born into poverty in 1917 (the youngest of 20 children), which according to Planned Parenthood’s philosophy, was a circumstance worthy of eliminating her. Since the age of 6, she worked in the cotton fields with her sharecropping family and was forced to leave school at the age of 12.
But Fannie Lou Hamer, like many other remarkable figures in American history, defied the disproven narrative that poverty cannot birth greatness. She and her husband, Perry “Pap” Hamer, tirelessly toiled on a Mississippi
plantation. Slavery just in a legally different form, he worked in the fields while she, armed with the ability to read and write, worked in the big House. In 1962, her life took an even more drastic turn.
Read the article “Fannie Lou Hamer, Pro-Life Civil Rights Leader” on theradiancefoundation.org.