Chelsea Handler writes an open letter to women: “Ladies, we can do better than this”

Ever since November 8th the topic of how to make progress, collectively, has been on everyone’s minds. In a new open letter, Chelsea Handler offers up one possible path forward: women must lift up other women.

The Chelsea host confronts head-on the question of why 53% of white women voted for Donald Trump, and says that for too long women have been socialized to compete with one another rather than support each other’s successes.

"94% of black women voted for Hillary Clinton, because unlike white women, black women don’t take their rights, liberties...for granted," she writes. "Ladies, we can do better than this. We can eliminate the competitiveness that has been imposed upon us because we are treated as a minority and have been taught to tackle, rather than climb."


Handler’s not the first to make the point that women lifting up other women can change the world. Feminist author Robin Morgan edited the book Sisterhood Is Powerful in 1970, sharing writings from the women’s movement that at the time was shaping America. And more recently the concept of “Shine Theory” began to circulate, the central idea being that women are stronger together — “I don’t shine if you don’t shine.”

As Handler writes, “We don’t just have a problem with men supporting women in this country; we have a problem with women supporting women.” Expressing deep frustration, she asks, “What kind of a woman votes for a white, entitled rich guy who has spent his entire life working the system for excess personal profit while insatiably groping strange women for personal pleasure?”

In difficult times, we must confront the biggest questions, and white women clearly have a lot of work to do. Lifting each other up includes calling out each other’s blind spots — so we’re thrilled to see Chelsea taking on this challenge. No matter which way you voted, Chelsea makes a critical point about how polarized we are as a country. Bottom line: We must be supporting and uplifting each other.