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Porsha Williams Explains How Motherhood Ignited Her Passion to "Fight for Real Change"
The RHOA cast member and fiancé Dennis McKinley have been participating in protests in support of Black Lives Matter.
Porsha Williams is no stranger to activism and social change, given that her grandfather was civil rights activist Hosea Williams. But after becoming a mother last year and seeing the injustices Black Americans face every day, it made her want to step up and speak out.
The Real Housewives of Atlanta mom spoke to ET about actively participating in the George Floyd protests in Atlanta and how being Pilar Jhena McKinley's mom has made her want to step into the role of activist.
"For me to sit there and see a black man who was completely unarmed, not resisting, laying on the ground, face on the pavement, a knee in his neck, two other officers laying on, applying pressure on the rest of his body, the amount of time that he was down, every cry that he cried out, when he asked for his mother, all of that touched me in a completely different way," she said. "I'm a mother now, God forbid, I would have to go through anything like that, to lose a child. God forbid, if I'm already gone and my child is on the ground, under the knee of a police officer who is supposed to protect and serve them, snuffing their life out with soulless eyes."
Thousands have stepped up at protests, rallies, and vigils to support the Black Lives Matter movement in the wake of George Floyd's alleged murder at the hands of a police officer after he was arrested on May 25 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
She noted that the powerful images of George Floyd being held down by law enforcement before dying "awoke something in me that I knew was there. I have always had a heart for the people, it's in my blood. My grandfather, Reverend Hosea Williams, and my father raised us in that way to have a heart for the people, charitable. I've marched with my grandfather in the past. But [the video] ignited what was in me to want to fight for real change and to understand that I need to be with my people, with our allies, side by side, and fighting for real change and justice for George Floyd's family, and for the other families who have been victims of police brutality."
Porsha is one of many public figures who are protesting, including fellow RHOA cast member Cynthia Bailey, Project Runway judge Elaine Welteroth, Married to Medicine's Mariah Huq, and The Real Housewives of Potomac's Gizelle Bryant. Porsha's fiancé, Dennis McKinley, has also stepped up with bail and legal aid for protesters who have been arrested.
Porsha noted in her interview with ET that she didn't know George Floyd "personally," but it's still personal.
"I am George Floyd. I am African American. My brother is African American, his children are African American. People I work with, we should not be targeted because of the skin that we live in," she said. "We have been living in this negativity and attacked for a very long time, and if I can do anything, if anything is in my power to help lift the voices of the protesters who are out there every day, tirelessly, peacefully trying to be heard, be seen, be felt, if I can do anything to assist with that, how dare I sit at home and not get out there and be active. Every day I have been out there I have learned something different."
Porsha also spoke to Us Weekly and shared a similar sentiment about being a mother and activist: “My child’s future is on the line. … I fear for her future. I fear for her life and living in her black skin. I fear for my other future children. I fear for my family members and people who I don’t even know. I did not know George Floyd personally, but I am African American just as he is. He is my brother.”
She also added in an interview with PEOPLE that now is the time for everyone to use their voice to shape the future for the better.
"At this moment, I am fighting for humanity, my brother, my sister, my allies, my cousins, whomever you are, if you are like-minded and you are going to be on the right side of history and say no to racism, then you are my family," she said. "Just as passionate as I am about having a safe and quality future of life for my daughter, I want the same thing for any other American."