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#AskAMogul:Hi,I'mAliciaGarza.I'mtheco-founderofBlackLivesMatter.Askmeanything.YourquestionswillbeansweredLIVE10/4@NoonET.

Alicia Garza
Alicia Garza Co-Founder of Black Lives Matter & Special Projects Director for the National Domestic Workers Alliance
almost 2 years Oakland, CA, United States Conversation

Your questions will be answered on Wednesday, October 4th at 12pm ET. To ask a question, click here to create a Mogul profile, then post a question in the comment section below!

Hi! My name is Alicia Garza and I'm an organizer, writer, public speaker and freedom dreamer who is currently the Special Projects Director for the National Domestic Workers Alliance, the nation’s leading voice for dignity and fairness for the millions of domestic workers in the United States. 

I'm also the co-founder of Black Lives Matter, along with Opal Tometi and Patrisse Cullors. We are a globally recognized organizing project that focuses on combating anti-Black state- sanctioned violence and the oppression of all Black people.

In addition to having interviews featured in multiple publications, my work has received numerous recognitions including being named on The Root's 2016 list of 100 African American achievers and influencers, the 2016 Glamour Women of the Year Award, the 2016 Marie Claire New Guard Award, and as a Community Change Agent at the 2016 BET's Black Girls Rock Awards.

Now's your chance to ask me anything! Please write your questions in the comments section below and I'll answer the questions live on Wednesday, October 4th at 12pm ET.

29 replies

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  • Alicia Garza
    Alicia Garza Co-Founder of Black Lives Matter & Special Projects Director for the National Domestic Workers Alliance
    almost 2 years ago Oakland, CA, United States

    It was such an honor to join you all today!  Thanks so much for all of your thoughtful questions! If you want to keep in touch, you can email me at [email protected]  Thank you <3

    It was such an honor to join you all today!  Thanks so much for all of your thoughtful questions! If you want to keep in touch, you can email me at [email protected]  Thank you <3

    • Gina Orley
      Gina Orley Social entrepreneur, trying to make it in this world.
      almost 2 years ago New York, NY, United States

      This was an incredible AAM! Thank you so much Alicia!

      This was an incredible AAM! Thank you so much Alicia!

  • V
    almost 2 years ago New York, NY, United States

    Hi Alicia,

    So thrilled to have you on Mogul! Ultimately, do you think the NFL's #TakeAKnee is helping or hurting the BLM movement?

    Hi Alicia,

    So thrilled to have you on Mogul! Ultimately, do you think the NFL's #TakeAKnee is helping or hurting the BLM movement?

    • Alicia Garza
      Alicia Garza Co-Founder of Black Lives Matter & Special Projects Director for the National Domestic Workers Alliance
      almost 2 years ago Oakland, CA, United States

      Hi @V thanks for asking. I think I might ask a different question--why is Colin Kaepernick unemployed? Why are players being threatened with their jobs if they participate in a peaceful protest calling attention to racial injustice?


      I think that #TakeAKnee is a great thing. It's showing us in real time how racism operates, and that is helpful for our work as an organization and for all of us who are a part of this movement. 

      Hi @V thanks for asking. I think I might ask a different question--why is Colin Kaepernick unemployed? Why are players being threatened with their jobs if they participate in a peaceful protest calling attention to racial injustice?


      I think that #TakeAKnee is a great thing. It's showing us in real time how racism operates, and that is helpful for our work as an organization and for all of us who are a part of this movement. 

  • Juli
    Juli 🙀
    almost 2 years ago Brooklyn, NY, United States

    what are the current biggest initiatives that you're working on with your BLM team? 

    what are the current biggest initiatives that you're working on with your BLM team? 

    • Alicia Garza
      Alicia Garza Co-Founder of Black Lives Matter & Special Projects Director for the National Domestic Workers Alliance
      almost 2 years ago Oakland, CA, United States

      Hi @Juli thanks for your question! One of the initiatives that BLM is working on that I am really excited about is work to end money bail. There's so many people sitting in jails throughout this country because they can't afford to bail themselves out. That means that people are separated from their families, losing employment, and losing out on precious time with their loved ones. If you want to learn more about how to get involved in that work, you can visit https://nomoremoneybail.org/ to learn how.

      Hi @Juli thanks for your question! One of the initiatives that BLM is working on that I am really excited about is work to end money bail. There's so many people sitting in jails throughout this country because they can't afford to bail themselves out. That means that people are separated from their families, losing employment, and losing out on precious time with their loved ones. If you want to learn more about how to get involved in that work, you can visit https://nomoremoneybail.org/ to learn how.

  • Natasha
    Natasha 💪🏻& 👊🏻 just like NYC
    almost 2 years ago New York, NY, United States

    How do you recommend people get involved?

    How do you recommend people get involved?

    • Alicia Garza
      Alicia Garza Co-Founder of Black Lives Matter & Special Projects Director for the National Domestic Workers Alliance
      almost 2 years ago Oakland, CA, United States

      Hi @Natasha  thanks for your question. I think people should get involved wherever they are and with whatever you are passionate about. There's no right answer here--there's a lot of problems that need solving, and that's going to take all of us. Involvement can look a bunch of different ways. You can give money, volunteer, start discussion groups, vote, call your representative, start your own initiative, and so on and so on. But the most important thing right now is to get involved in something that is trying to make the world better--we really do need all hands on deck. 

      Hi @Natasha  thanks for your question. I think people should get involved wherever they are and with whatever you are passionate about. There's no right answer here--there's a lot of problems that need solving, and that's going to take all of us. Involvement can look a bunch of different ways. You can give money, volunteer, start discussion groups, vote, call your representative, start your own initiative, and so on and so on. But the most important thing right now is to get involved in something that is trying to make the world better--we really do need all hands on deck. 

  • Danica
    almost 2 years ago

    I am so excited that you are answering questions on Mogul. Your work is so groundbreaking. I read that you started BLM because "black people are dying." I definitely feel like part of the problem is the amount of weapons easily available. In light of the recent events in Las Vegas, what are your thoughts on gun control?

    I am so excited that you are answering questions on Mogul. Your work is so groundbreaking. I read that you started BLM because "black people are dying." I definitely feel like part of the problem is the amount of weapons easily available. In light of the recent events in Las Vegas, what are your thoughts on gun control?

    • Alicia Garza
      Alicia Garza Co-Founder of Black Lives Matter & Special Projects Director for the National Domestic Workers Alliance
      almost 2 years ago Oakland, CA, United States

      Hi @Danica thanks for asking! 


      Honestly, I think that we need to take action on gun control--especially semi-automatic weapons. The gun lobby is one of the most powerful lobbies in the country, and while lots of people defend their right to bear arms, no one wants to solve the problem of how many people die of gun violence every year. 

      Hi @Danica thanks for asking! 


      Honestly, I think that we need to take action on gun control--especially semi-automatic weapons. The gun lobby is one of the most powerful lobbies in the country, and while lots of people defend their right to bear arms, no one wants to solve the problem of how many people die of gun violence every year. 

  • namisha
    namisha Inquisitive, Avid Reader, Food Lover, Amateur Chef, Digital Sensei
    almost 2 years ago New York, NY, United States

    Hi Alicia, i really admire all your work. What motivated you to start black lives matter? Why now? 

    Hi Alicia, i really admire all your work. What motivated you to start black lives matter? Why now? 

    • Alicia Garza
      Alicia Garza Co-Founder of Black Lives Matter & Special Projects Director for the National Domestic Workers Alliance
      almost 2 years ago Oakland, CA, United States

      Hi @namisha  thanks for your question! Patrisse, Opal and I started an organization in 2013 because George Zimmerman was acquitted of murdering a Black child, and we felt very strongly that this was an opportunity to get Black people organized and active against state violence and for communities where all of us could live with dignity. And we weren't alone--a bunch of organizations were created to organize and build power for Black people and Black communities, like the Black Youth Project 100 and the Dream Defenders. We joined hundreds of other organizations that had been doing this work for decades. When Mike Brown was killed in Ferguson, MO, communities there rose up and catapulted the framework of Black Lives Matter and bigger than that, resistance to the oppression of our communities, into the national and international consciousness.


      Why now? Because Black people are dying. Some people would want you to think that Black people are dying because we're killing each other, but that's not actually true. More Black people are killed by racism than gun violence--and by racism I mean neglect, lack of access to healthcare, unemployment and underemployment, a lack of affordable housing, etc. 

      Hi @namisha  thanks for your question! Patrisse, Opal and I started an organization in 2013 because George Zimmerman was acquitted of murdering a Black child, and we felt very strongly that this was an opportunity to get Black people organized and active against state violence and for communities where all of us could live with dignity. And we weren't alone--a bunch of organizations were created to organize and build power for Black people and Black communities, like the Black Youth Project 100 and the Dream Defenders. We joined hundreds of other organizations that had been doing this work for decades. When Mike Brown was killed in Ferguson, MO, communities there rose up and catapulted the framework of Black Lives Matter and bigger than that, resistance to the oppression of our communities, into the national and international consciousness.


      Why now? Because Black people are dying. Some people would want you to think that Black people are dying because we're killing each other, but that's not actually true. More Black people are killed by racism than gun violence--and by racism I mean neglect, lack of access to healthcare, unemployment and underemployment, a lack of affordable housing, etc. 

  • Gina Orley
    Gina Orley Social entrepreneur, trying to make it in this world.
    almost 2 years ago New York, NY, United States

    So amazing to meet you via Ask A Mogul, Alicia! If you had to drop everything to to visit a city tomorrow that you've never been to, which city would it be? Also, if you could only eat one meal every day for the rest of your life, what would it be?

    So amazing to meet you via Ask A Mogul, Alicia! If you had to drop everything to to visit a city tomorrow that you've never been to, which city would it be? Also, if you could only eat one meal every day for the rest of your life, what would it be?

    • Alicia Garza
      Alicia Garza Co-Founder of Black Lives Matter & Special Projects Director for the National Domestic Workers Alliance
      almost 2 years ago Oakland, CA, United States

      Hi @Gina Orley great to meet you too! If I had to drop everything to visit a city tomorrow that I've never been to, it would be Johannesburg, South Africa. If I could eat only one meal every day for the rest of my life, it would be  bacon cheeseburgers and french fries!

      Hi @Gina Orley great to meet you too! If I had to drop everything to visit a city tomorrow that I've never been to, it would be Johannesburg, South Africa. If I could eat only one meal every day for the rest of my life, it would be  bacon cheeseburgers and french fries!

  • Kathy May
    Kathy May Associate at Deutsche Bank
    almost 2 years ago New York, NY, USA

    Thank you for joining us on Mogul! What is your biggest hope for America in the coming year? Also, what are your current latest initiatives and how can we support them?

    Thank you for joining us on Mogul! What is your biggest hope for America in the coming year? Also, what are your current latest initiatives and how can we support them?

    • Alicia Garza
      Alicia Garza Co-Founder of Black Lives Matter & Special Projects Director for the National Domestic Workers Alliance
      almost 2 years ago Oakland, CA, United States

      Hi @Kathy May thanks for asking! My biggest hope for America in the coming year is that we have the courage to impeach this sorry excuse for a President. 


      Right now, I'm working with the National Domestic Workers Alliance (www.domesticworkers.org) to build the power of caregivers--nannies, housecleaners, elder care providers and personal attendants--to shape an economy that values their work. We're connecting Black domestic workers across the diaspora to change conditions in their communities, and we're working on a podcast right now that connects women to share with each other about how to make it work and how to make it better.

      I'm also working on a project called the Black Futures Lab that is focused on building Black political power and transforming democracy, from the ground up. 

      We would love your support! Feel free to email me at [email protected] if you're interested in supporting our work.

      Hi @Kathy May thanks for asking! My biggest hope for America in the coming year is that we have the courage to impeach this sorry excuse for a President. 


      Right now, I'm working with the National Domestic Workers Alliance (www.domesticworkers.org) to build the power of caregivers--nannies, housecleaners, elder care providers and personal attendants--to shape an economy that values their work. We're connecting Black domestic workers across the diaspora to change conditions in their communities, and we're working on a podcast right now that connects women to share with each other about how to make it work and how to make it better.

      I'm also working on a project called the Black Futures Lab that is focused on building Black political power and transforming democracy, from the ground up. 

      We would love your support! Feel free to email me at [email protected] if you're interested in supporting our work.

  • Rachel Borowicz
    Rachel Borowicz Software Engineer & Arts Philanthropist
    almost 2 years ago San Francisco, CA, United States

    You are such an inspiration to me. Who would you say most inspired you as a young girl? And who inspires you the most now?

    You are such an inspiration to me. Who would you say most inspired you as a young girl? And who inspires you the most now?

    • Alicia Garza
      Alicia Garza Co-Founder of Black Lives Matter & Special Projects Director for the National Domestic Workers Alliance
      almost 2 years ago Oakland, CA, United States

      Hi @Rachel Borowicz thanks for asking! My biggest inspirations continue to be Harriet Tubman and my mom. Harriet Tubman because she helped lead hundreds of enslaved people to freedom, fought for the rights of Black women, and dared Black people who were enslaved to be courageous and leaders in their own emancipation. My mom because she's everything--kind, gentle, multi-talented, humble, and beautiful.

      Hi @Rachel Borowicz thanks for asking! My biggest inspirations continue to be Harriet Tubman and my mom. Harriet Tubman because she helped lead hundreds of enslaved people to freedom, fought for the rights of Black women, and dared Black people who were enslaved to be courageous and leaders in their own emancipation. My mom because she's everything--kind, gentle, multi-talented, humble, and beautiful.

  • Tiffany Pham
    Tiffany Pham Founder & CEO, Mogul
    almost 2 years ago New York, NY, USA

    It is really an honor to have you on here. What are the books that most shaped you in your life? We have a book club at Mogul, where we read books together as a company alongside the rest of our millions of users. What fiction book and non-fiction book would you recommend we read next?

    It is really an honor to have you on here. What are the books that most shaped you in your life? We have a book club at Mogul, where we read books together as a company alongside the rest of our millions of users. What fiction book and non-fiction book would you recommend we read next?

    • Alicia Garza
      Alicia Garza Co-Founder of Black Lives Matter & Special Projects Director for the National Domestic Workers Alliance
      almost 2 years ago Oakland, CA, United States

      Hi @Tiffany Pham  I'm honored to be here and thanks so much for asking! I'm a really avid reader and I LOVE books. Fiction book to recommend would be The Wizard of the Crow by Ngugi wa Thiongo, and non-fiction book would be Stamped From the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas by Ibram X. Kendi or Brittany Cooper's new book, Eloquent Rage: A Black Homegirl Stages an Intervention on America.

      Hi @Tiffany Pham  I'm honored to be here and thanks so much for asking! I'm a really avid reader and I LOVE books. Fiction book to recommend would be The Wizard of the Crow by Ngugi wa Thiongo, and non-fiction book would be Stamped From the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas by Ibram X. Kendi or Brittany Cooper's new book, Eloquent Rage: A Black Homegirl Stages an Intervention on America.

  • Shantel Risher
    Shantel Risher Digital Operation Associate
    almost 2 years ago New York, NY, United States

    Many people believe that BLM is just another hate group, designed to divide America, or single out the significance of one black life over all the others. How can BLM stress that you are not here to divide or express hate towards police officers, but rather seek justice in these killings of unarmed black men and women at the hands of police?

    Many people believe that BLM is just another hate group, designed to divide America, or single out the significance of one black life over all the others. How can BLM stress that you are not here to divide or express hate towards police officers, but rather seek justice in these killings of unarmed black men and women at the hands of police?

    • Alicia Garza
      Alicia Garza Co-Founder of Black Lives Matter & Special Projects Director for the National Domestic Workers Alliance
      almost 2 years ago Oakland, CA, United States

      Hi @Shantel Risher  thanks so much for your question. I'll be honest. Some people believe that BLM is a hate group because they want to--not because we haven't talked about what we believe and who we are thousands and thousands of times. We've stressed already on every major news platform what we are for, which is freedom and justice for Black communities, so that all communities can have that. At a certain point, I think we have to acknowledge that people calling BLM a hate group is a part of racism and white supremacy, and that can only be fixed by those who benefit from it deciding that they want to divorce themselves from it. Our energies are focused on building power for our people, and building a movement that includes everyone who wants to see a better world. 

      Hi @Shantel Risher  thanks so much for your question. I'll be honest. Some people believe that BLM is a hate group because they want to--not because we haven't talked about what we believe and who we are thousands and thousands of times. We've stressed already on every major news platform what we are for, which is freedom and justice for Black communities, so that all communities can have that. At a certain point, I think we have to acknowledge that people calling BLM a hate group is a part of racism and white supremacy, and that can only be fixed by those who benefit from it deciding that they want to divorce themselves from it. Our energies are focused on building power for our people, and building a movement that includes everyone who wants to see a better world. 

      • Shantel Risher
        Shantel Risher Digital Operation Associate
        almost 2 years ago New York, NY, United States

        @Alicia Garza thank you so much, I definitely agree that BLM is not to separate upon any means! 

        @Alicia Garza thank you so much, I definitely agree that BLM is not to separate upon any means! 

  • Bethany Heinrich
    Bethany Heinrich Mogul Influencer
    almost 2 years ago New York, NY, United States

    Hi @Alicia Garza! What inspired you to help start Black Lives Matter? How has the founding of it changed you as a person? 

    Hi @Alicia Garza! What inspired you to help start Black Lives Matter? How has the founding of it changed you as a person? 

    • Alicia Garza
      Alicia Garza Co-Founder of Black Lives Matter & Special Projects Director for the National Domestic Workers Alliance
      almost 2 years ago Oakland, CA, United States

      Hi @Bethany Heinrich thanks for your question! Patrisse, Opal and I started an organization in 2013 because George Zimmerman was acquitted of murdering a Black child, and we felt very strongly that this was an opportunity to get Black people organized and active against state violence and for communities where all of us could live with dignity. And we weren't alone--a bunch of organizations were created to organize and build power for Black people and Black communities, like the Black Youth Project 100 and the Dream Defenders. We joined hundreds of other organizations that had been doing this work for decades. When Mike Brown was killed in Ferguson, MO, communities there rose up and catapulted the framework of Black Lives Matter and bigger than that, resistance to the oppression of our communities, into the national and international consciousness. 


      How has starting the BLM organization changed me as a person? Well, honestly, it's connected me to thousands more fighters and freedom dreamers, and it's encouraged me to think bigger about what's possible for our communities. 

      Hi @Bethany Heinrich thanks for your question! Patrisse, Opal and I started an organization in 2013 because George Zimmerman was acquitted of murdering a Black child, and we felt very strongly that this was an opportunity to get Black people organized and active against state violence and for communities where all of us could live with dignity. And we weren't alone--a bunch of organizations were created to organize and build power for Black people and Black communities, like the Black Youth Project 100 and the Dream Defenders. We joined hundreds of other organizations that had been doing this work for decades. When Mike Brown was killed in Ferguson, MO, communities there rose up and catapulted the framework of Black Lives Matter and bigger than that, resistance to the oppression of our communities, into the national and international consciousness. 


      How has starting the BLM organization changed me as a person? Well, honestly, it's connected me to thousands more fighters and freedom dreamers, and it's encouraged me to think bigger about what's possible for our communities. 

  • Lucy Chen
    almost 2 years ago Chicago, IL, United States

    Hi Alicia. I just want to say that you are one of my role models. I admire how you helped start BLM to advocate for people and fight for their rights. In your opinion, what will it take for racial tensions to decrease in society?

    Hi Alicia. I just want to say that you are one of my role models. I admire how you helped start BLM to advocate for people and fight for their rights. In your opinion, what will it take for racial tensions to decrease in society?

    • Alicia Garza
      Alicia Garza Co-Founder of Black Lives Matter & Special Projects Director for the National Domestic Workers Alliance
      almost 2 years ago Oakland, CA, United States

      Hi @Lucy Chen  thanks so much for your question, and I appreciate the love, for real. 


      For racial tensions to decrease in society, white people have to be willing and ready to let go of power. Full stop.

      When you look at Congress today, the overwhelming majority of people making decisions for the country are white men. In many of our local and state governments, the issue is the same.  Where are the Black people? Where are the people of color, the women, the immigrants, the people with disabilities? Racism is structural, meaning it's embedded into the laws that govern our country. Racism is about how resources for education are distributed and who has access to it. Racism is about job quality and wages. Racism is about who has access to healthcare and services. All of that is governed by laws and policies, and the people who make the laws and policies mostly have something in common. 

      While for me, racial tensions doesn't totally describe what happens in the US with racism, if we were to talk specifically about racial tensions I would say that persistent segregation is a huge part of it. Lots of white people get to live in communities with people who largely look like them, and Black people and people of color tend to live in communities void of white people. Segregation helps to maintain racial tensions. When the only Black people that folks know are on television, that's a big problem. 

      Hi @Lucy Chen  thanks so much for your question, and I appreciate the love, for real. 


      For racial tensions to decrease in society, white people have to be willing and ready to let go of power. Full stop.

      When you look at Congress today, the overwhelming majority of people making decisions for the country are white men. In many of our local and state governments, the issue is the same.  Where are the Black people? Where are the people of color, the women, the immigrants, the people with disabilities? Racism is structural, meaning it's embedded into the laws that govern our country. Racism is about how resources for education are distributed and who has access to it. Racism is about job quality and wages. Racism is about who has access to healthcare and services. All of that is governed by laws and policies, and the people who make the laws and policies mostly have something in common. 

      While for me, racial tensions doesn't totally describe what happens in the US with racism, if we were to talk specifically about racial tensions I would say that persistent segregation is a huge part of it. Lots of white people get to live in communities with people who largely look like them, and Black people and people of color tend to live in communities void of white people. Segregation helps to maintain racial tensions. When the only Black people that folks know are on television, that's a big problem. 

  • Natasha Ravinand
    Natasha Ravinand Author of "Girls With Dreams"
    almost 2 years ago Irvine, CA, United States

    Hi, Alicia! Thank you for all the work you have done thus far in working to create a more inclusive environment for all within the US. As a high-school girl, my question revolves around the power of technology: how has social media and the Internet helped you grow Black Lives Matter's influence and expand its support base? Thank you for your efforts thus far!


    -Natasha Ravinand

    Hi, Alicia! Thank you for all the work you have done thus far in working to create a more inclusive environment for all within the US. As a high-school girl, my question revolves around the power of technology: how has social media and the Internet helped you grow Black Lives Matter's influence and expand its support base? Thank you for your efforts thus far!


    -Natasha Ravinand

    • Alicia Garza
      Alicia Garza Co-Founder of Black Lives Matter & Special Projects Director for the National Domestic Workers Alliance
      almost 2 years ago Oakland, CA, United States

      Hi @Natasha Ravinand thanks so much for your question! The power of technology is pretty big and I think hasn't even been fully realized yet. Technology is helping people connect across place and space, and that's making our world bigger, isn't it? The BLM organization started online. We created online spaces for people who were upset about George Zimmerman being acquitted specifically and racism and state violence more broadly to connect with each other, discuss and share information with each other, and then we encouraged people to take action together offline. Since most people these days get their information on the Internet, it's a really great opportunity to organize, and it creates the opportunity for people to connect and learn about each other instantly.

      Hi @Natasha Ravinand thanks so much for your question! The power of technology is pretty big and I think hasn't even been fully realized yet. Technology is helping people connect across place and space, and that's making our world bigger, isn't it? The BLM organization started online. We created online spaces for people who were upset about George Zimmerman being acquitted specifically and racism and state violence more broadly to connect with each other, discuss and share information with each other, and then we encouraged people to take action together offline. Since most people these days get their information on the Internet, it's a really great opportunity to organize, and it creates the opportunity for people to connect and learn about each other instantly.


Alicia Garza
Co-Founder of Black Lives Matter & Special Projects Director for the National Domestic Workers Alliance

Alicia Garza is an Oakland-based organizer, writer, public speaker and freedom dreamer who is currently the Special Projects Director for the National Domestic Workers Alliance, the nation’s leading voice for dignity and fairness for the millions of domestic workers in the United States. Garza, [...]

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