For Tanya With Love

March 7, 2013
By

tanyaIt has been almost one year since Tanya McDowell was sentenced in a Bridgeport, Connecticut courtroom to five years in prison. Police charged McDowell for “stealing” $15,686 worth of educational services from Newport, Connecticut for her son. While the two were, in fact, homeless and spent nights in shelters in Norwalk, a friend’s apartment in Bridgeport, and a van parked in both Connecticut towns, authorities concluded that McDowell’s son should have been enrolled in the Bridgeport school district. Her sentence for education “theft” in Norwalk runs concurrently with a sentence for a drug conviction in Bridgeport.

Those are the facts as told in one news account after another. Here are some others. Newport, Connecticut is a predominantly white town with an average income that is almost twice that of Bridgeport. While the math and reading scores are well below the national average in Bridgeport, almost 20% of students in Newport schools score above the national average. From this vantage point, Tanya McDowell who lived in neither place but slept in both made a savvy choice and enrolled her son in the better district.

But when does American Dream seeking, innovation, motherly “instinct,” and creative problem solving get celebrated and when does it get criminalized? Which mother’s children deserve the best, and which mothers are demonized for asserting their children’s worth?

As almost one year has passed and we find ourselves in Women’s Herstory Month, we want to honor Tanya McDowell. This month as we remember the contributions of famous women and speak the names that flow through our collective conscious, let us also invoke the names of women whose economic disenfranchisement, criminal histories, homelessness, single mother status, race and ethnicity, and the confluence of other structural forces wreak havoc in their (and their children’s) lives.

With joy and solidarity, we celebrate the mothering work and acts of resistance of Tanya McDowell, and we invite you to write a love note to Tanya and her child (in the comments section below). In these times of growing skepticism and mounting critique rightly aimed at the myriad forms of structural conditions that negatively impact women and children around the world, we recognize the need for self-care and acts of love-making within our communities. “Love Notes” are intended to counteract the violence of oppressions through offerings of praise, support, solidarity, and love. It is a radical space where we, for once, seek to forego the use of the “master’s tools” (i.e. war; in-fighting; communal dissolution; hatred; separation; and prejudices) by employing a different and revolutionary tactic, namely, love.

We will keep your love alive and encourage you to do the same by sharing Tanya’s story on Facebook and twitter, using the hashtag #StandingWithTanya. Also, consider sending Tanya a care package via The Crunk Feminist Collective, Quirky Black Girls, and FAAN Mail’s venture Feminist Care Packages.

 

Keep loving. Keep fighting.

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240 Responses to For Tanya With Love

  1. Claire M-B on March 7, 2013 at 12:58 pm

    Tanya,

    May the Love of community sustain you, and may you know that there are those of us out here working like mad for justice and peace and love to finally and forever win. Until that day, we won’t stop working for you – your freedom. your care. your justice. your rights. and those of your family and children. light and love and solidarity, claire

    • carla on March 8, 2013 at 9:48 pm

      prayers – stay strong….may your situation provide a way for the system to change.

  2. Claire M-B on March 7, 2013 at 12:58 pm

    Tanya,

    May the Love of community sustain you, and may you know that there are those of us out here working like mad for justice and peace and love to finally and forever win. Until that day, we won’t stop working for you – your freedom. your care. your justice. your rights. and those of your family and children. light and love and solidarity, claire

    • carla on March 8, 2013 at 9:48 pm

      prayers – stay strong….may your situation provide a way for the system to change.

  3. Claire M-B on March 7, 2013 at 12:58 pm

    Tanya,

    May the Love of community sustain you, and may you know that there are those of us out here working like mad for justice and peace and love to finally and forever win. Until that day, we won’t stop working for you – your freedom. your care. your justice. your rights. and those of your family and children. light and love and solidarity, claire

    • carla on March 8, 2013 at 9:48 pm

      prayers – stay strong….may your situation provide a way for the system to change.

  4. Claire M-B on March 7, 2013 at 12:58 pm

    Tanya,

    May the Love of community sustain you, and may you know that there are those of us out here working like mad for justice and peace and love to finally and forever win. Until that day, we won’t stop working for you – your freedom. your care. your justice. your rights. and those of your family and children. light and love and solidarity, claire

    • carla on March 8, 2013 at 9:48 pm

      prayers – stay strong….may your situation provide a way for the system to change.

  5. Angie Rogers on March 7, 2013 at 1:09 pm

    You are a wonderful mother, Tanya! Honestly, we should all be as brave as you are. I can’t imagine what you are going through now, and I am sending prayers that your ordeal with be over soon so that you can be reunited with your son. This is so unfair. You are a civil rights hero – a Rosa Parks for the 21st century! Someday, I think we’ll see YOUR name in the history books when we study about the fight to have an equal education for all people.
    Sincerely,
    Angela M. Rogers
    Ph.D. (in education) and mom of 2

    • The Kin on March 9, 2013 at 9:43 am

      I lived outside America. I also lived there. America is giving out millions of dollars in aid. However, when I hear such kind of injustice, can I call it hypocritical? While I lived there I saw people scavenging from the garbage can but I hear from the media that too much food is wasted there. Why not it should be given to those needy people. America also

    • The Kin on March 9, 2013 at 9:48 am

      It is the policy to destroy the lack people and their progeny for good. But God does the reverse. No one could destroy the Blacks: Slavery, HIV deliberate infections, Syphilis deliberate infections, imprisonment, and name it. God is with us. Keep up ladies and gentlemen. Never ever give up!! The time is coming when the world is judged not by water but by ultraviolet ray storms.

  6. Angie Rogers on March 7, 2013 at 1:09 pm

    You are a wonderful mother, Tanya! Honestly, we should all be as brave as you are. I can’t imagine what you are going through now, and I am sending prayers that your ordeal with be over soon so that you can be reunited with your son. This is so unfair. You are a civil rights hero – a Rosa Parks for the 21st century! Someday, I think we’ll see YOUR name in the history books when we study about the fight to have an equal education for all people.
    Sincerely,
    Angela M. Rogers
    Ph.D. (in education) and mom of 2

    • The Kin on March 9, 2013 at 9:43 am

      I lived outside America. I also lived there. America is giving out millions of dollars in aid. However, when I hear such kind of injustice, can I call it hypocritical? While I lived there I saw people scavenging from the garbage can but I hear from the media that too much food is wasted there. Why not it should be given to those needy people. America also

    • The Kin on March 9, 2013 at 9:48 am

      It is the policy to destroy the lack people and their progeny for good. But God does the reverse. No one could destroy the Blacks: Slavery, HIV deliberate infections, Syphilis deliberate infections, imprisonment, and name it. God is with us. Keep up ladies and gentlemen. Never ever give up!! The time is coming when the world is judged not by water but by ultraviolet ray storms.

  7. Angie Rogers on March 7, 2013 at 1:09 pm

    You are a wonderful mother, Tanya! Honestly, we should all be as brave as you are. I can’t imagine what you are going through now, and I am sending prayers that your ordeal with be over soon so that you can be reunited with your son. This is so unfair. You are a civil rights hero – a Rosa Parks for the 21st century! Someday, I think we’ll see YOUR name in the history books when we study about the fight to have an equal education for all people.
    Sincerely,
    Angela M. Rogers
    Ph.D. (in education) and mom of 2

    • The Kin on March 9, 2013 at 9:43 am

      I lived outside America. I also lived there. America is giving out millions of dollars in aid. However, when I hear such kind of injustice, can I call it hypocritical? While I lived there I saw people scavenging from the garbage can but I hear from the media that too much food is wasted there. Why not it should be given to those needy people. America also

    • The Kin on March 9, 2013 at 9:48 am

      It is the policy to destroy the lack people and their progeny for good. But God does the reverse. No one could destroy the Blacks: Slavery, HIV deliberate infections, Syphilis deliberate infections, imprisonment, and name it. God is with us. Keep up ladies and gentlemen. Never ever give up!! The time is coming when the world is judged not by water but by ultraviolet ray storms.

  8. Angie Rogers on March 7, 2013 at 1:09 pm

    You are a wonderful mother, Tanya! Honestly, we should all be as brave as you are. I can’t imagine what you are going through now, and I am sending prayers that your ordeal with be over soon so that you can be reunited with your son. This is so unfair. You are a civil rights hero – a Rosa Parks for the 21st century! Someday, I think we’ll see YOUR name in the history books when we study about the fight to have an equal education for all people.
    Sincerely,
    Angela M. Rogers
    Ph.D. (in education) and mom of 2

    • The Kin on March 9, 2013 at 9:43 am

      I lived outside America. I also lived there. America is giving out millions of dollars in aid. However, when I hear such kind of injustice, can I call it hypocritical? While I lived there I saw people scavenging from the garbage can but I hear from the media that too much food is wasted there. Why not it should be given to those needy people. America also

    • The Kin on March 9, 2013 at 9:48 am

      It is the policy to destroy the lack people and their progeny for good. But God does the reverse. No one could destroy the Blacks: Slavery, HIV deliberate infections, Syphilis deliberate infections, imprisonment, and name it. God is with us. Keep up ladies and gentlemen. Never ever give up!! The time is coming when the world is judged not by water but by ultraviolet ray storms.

  9. ivy on March 7, 2013 at 1:15 pm

    Tanya, you are a loving mother and brave soul that made a decision in the best interest of your child. My heart goes out to you and I know you will push through and beyond this moment beautifully. I am so glad that we have this space to honor and uplift you. We love you as a member of the sisterhood of women, of mothers and humanity.

  10. ivy on March 7, 2013 at 1:15 pm

    Tanya, you are a loving mother and brave soul that made a decision in the best interest of your child. My heart goes out to you and I know you will push through and beyond this moment beautifully. I am so glad that we have this space to honor and uplift you. We love you as a member of the sisterhood of women, of mothers and humanity.

  11. ivy on March 7, 2013 at 1:15 pm

    Tanya, you are a loving mother and brave soul that made a decision in the best interest of your child. My heart goes out to you and I know you will push through and beyond this moment beautifully. I am so glad that we have this space to honor and uplift you. We love you as a member of the sisterhood of women, of mothers and humanity.

  12. ivy on March 7, 2013 at 1:15 pm

    Tanya, you are a loving mother and brave soul that made a decision in the best interest of your child. My heart goes out to you and I know you will push through and beyond this moment beautifully. I am so glad that we have this space to honor and uplift you. We love you as a member of the sisterhood of women, of mothers and humanity.

  13. cmm on March 7, 2013 at 1:20 pm

    Tanya,

    Your child, and every child, deserves the very best education. It sounds like you were being a good and loving parent under difficult circumstances. Be well and stay strong.

  14. cmm on March 7, 2013 at 1:20 pm

    Tanya,

    Your child, and every child, deserves the very best education. It sounds like you were being a good and loving parent under difficult circumstances. Be well and stay strong.

  15. cmm on March 7, 2013 at 1:20 pm

    Tanya,

    Your child, and every child, deserves the very best education. It sounds like you were being a good and loving parent under difficult circumstances. Be well and stay strong.

  16. cmm on March 7, 2013 at 1:20 pm

    Tanya,

    Your child, and every child, deserves the very best education. It sounds like you were being a good and loving parent under difficult circumstances. Be well and stay strong.

  17. Megan on March 7, 2013 at 1:21 pm

    Tanya,

    I was homeless once. But before that, I was raised and schooled and paid for in one of those privileged (very white) towns just down the road from you, given all the degrees, resources, chances and legs up one might expect there. I ended up homeless. But I didn’t have a kid to take care of, or as cold of a climate, or racial discrimination to face. And yet, I could barely take care of myself. I can’t fathom the strength and ingenuity it must have taken for you to handle those additional challenges, and to, during that, figure out why and how to send your kid to school in one town over another (and presumably to also regularly encourage his efforts at a school that was probably harder for him to be at than a Bridgeport school would have been). I am beyond impressed with what you have done, and appalled at the absurd legal situation you’ve been put through. I wish the best for you and your son.

    ~Megan

  18. Megan on March 7, 2013 at 1:21 pm

    Tanya,

    I was homeless once. But before that, I was raised and schooled and paid for in one of those privileged (very white) towns just down the road from you, given all the degrees, resources, chances and legs up one might expect there. I ended up homeless. But I didn’t have a kid to take care of, or as cold of a climate, or racial discrimination to face. And yet, I could barely take care of myself. I can’t fathom the strength and ingenuity it must have taken for you to handle those additional challenges, and to, during that, figure out why and how to send your kid to school in one town over another (and presumably to also regularly encourage his efforts at a school that was probably harder for him to be at than a Bridgeport school would have been). I am beyond impressed with what you have done, and appalled at the absurd legal situation you’ve been put through. I wish the best for you and your son.

    ~Megan

  19. Megan on March 7, 2013 at 1:21 pm

    Tanya,

    I was homeless once. But before that, I was raised and schooled and paid for in one of those privileged (very white) towns just down the road from you, given all the degrees, resources, chances and legs up one might expect there. I ended up homeless. But I didn’t have a kid to take care of, or as cold of a climate, or racial discrimination to face. And yet, I could barely take care of myself. I can’t fathom the strength and ingenuity it must have taken for you to handle those additional challenges, and to, during that, figure out why and how to send your kid to school in one town over another (and presumably to also regularly encourage his efforts at a school that was probably harder for him to be at than a Bridgeport school would have been). I am beyond impressed with what you have done, and appalled at the absurd legal situation you’ve been put through. I wish the best for you and your son.

    ~Megan

  20. Megan on March 7, 2013 at 1:21 pm

    Tanya,

    I was homeless once. But before that, I was raised and schooled and paid for in one of those privileged (very white) towns just down the road from you, given all the degrees, resources, chances and legs up one might expect there. I ended up homeless. But I didn’t have a kid to take care of, or as cold of a climate, or racial discrimination to face. And yet, I could barely take care of myself. I can’t fathom the strength and ingenuity it must have taken for you to handle those additional challenges, and to, during that, figure out why and how to send your kid to school in one town over another (and presumably to also regularly encourage his efforts at a school that was probably harder for him to be at than a Bridgeport school would have been). I am beyond impressed with what you have done, and appalled at the absurd legal situation you’ve been put through. I wish the best for you and your son.

    ~Megan

  21. Kristen Williams on March 7, 2013 at 1:22 pm

    Tanya,
    What has been done to you is so unjust it makes me want to shake my head and cry. I pray you have strength however during this time!!! You are powerful. It is obvious you care deeply for your son and his future. I cant understand why so many people cant see just how precious education is and how it can be used as a tool to separate, mis-educate, and divide people to create our class system. What they did to you was SO wrong. I am sending you all my love and good energy. I pray you will have justice and that your son will have all the best this world can offer!!!
    Be Strong!!
    - Kristen Williams

  22. Kristen Williams on March 7, 2013 at 1:22 pm

    Tanya,
    What has been done to you is so unjust it makes me want to shake my head and cry. I pray you have strength however during this time!!! You are powerful. It is obvious you care deeply for your son and his future. I cant understand why so many people cant see just how precious education is and how it can be used as a tool to separate, mis-educate, and divide people to create our class system. What they did to you was SO wrong. I am sending you all my love and good energy. I pray you will have justice and that your son will have all the best this world can offer!!!
    Be Strong!!
    - Kristen Williams

  23. Kristen Williams on March 7, 2013 at 1:22 pm

    Tanya,
    What has been done to you is so unjust it makes me want to shake my head and cry. I pray you have strength however during this time!!! You are powerful. It is obvious you care deeply for your son and his future. I cant understand why so many people cant see just how precious education is and how it can be used as a tool to separate, mis-educate, and divide people to create our class system. What they did to you was SO wrong. I am sending you all my love and good energy. I pray you will have justice and that your son will have all the best this world can offer!!!
    Be Strong!!
    - Kristen Williams

  24. Kristen Williams on March 7, 2013 at 1:22 pm

    Tanya,
    What has been done to you is so unjust it makes me want to shake my head and cry. I pray you have strength however during this time!!! You are powerful. It is obvious you care deeply for your son and his future. I cant understand why so many people cant see just how precious education is and how it can be used as a tool to separate, mis-educate, and divide people to create our class system. What they did to you was SO wrong. I am sending you all my love and good energy. I pray you will have justice and that your son will have all the best this world can offer!!!
    Be Strong!!
    - Kristen Williams

  25. Robbie on March 7, 2013 at 1:28 pm

    Tanya,
    I hope the support we hold for you penetrates the walls and isolation of your unjust imprisonment. I pray the day comes for you swiftly that you may wrap your arms around your son and walk free of the walls keeping you from sharing that love with all of us. May your struggle dignify the Movement for Equitable Education to recognize how extraordinary each and everyone of us is. I want the best for my child and never should children have to suffer because of our initiative. We will see you through. Hold yourself and all the womrn around you in the light of purpose, see the strength pulse in you, proving your love is greater than any force.

  26. Robbie on March 7, 2013 at 1:28 pm

    Tanya,
    I hope the support we hold for you penetrates the walls and isolation of your unjust imprisonment. I pray the day comes for you swiftly that you may wrap your arms around your son and walk free of the walls keeping you from sharing that love with all of us. May your struggle dignify the Movement for Equitable Education to recognize how extraordinary each and everyone of us is. I want the best for my child and never should children have to suffer because of our initiative. We will see you through. Hold yourself and all the womrn around you in the light of purpose, see the strength pulse in you, proving your love is greater than any force.

  27. Robbie on March 7, 2013 at 1:28 pm

    Tanya,
    I hope the support we hold for you penetrates the walls and isolation of your unjust imprisonment. I pray the day comes for you swiftly that you may wrap your arms around your son and walk free of the walls keeping you from sharing that love with all of us. May your struggle dignify the Movement for Equitable Education to recognize how extraordinary each and everyone of us is. I want the best for my child and never should children have to suffer because of our initiative. We will see you through. Hold yourself and all the womrn around you in the light of purpose, see the strength pulse in you, proving your love is greater than any force.

  28. Robbie on March 7, 2013 at 1:28 pm

    Tanya,
    I hope the support we hold for you penetrates the walls and isolation of your unjust imprisonment. I pray the day comes for you swiftly that you may wrap your arms around your son and walk free of the walls keeping you from sharing that love with all of us. May your struggle dignify the Movement for Equitable Education to recognize how extraordinary each and everyone of us is. I want the best for my child and never should children have to suffer because of our initiative. We will see you through. Hold yourself and all the womrn around you in the light of purpose, see the strength pulse in you, proving your love is greater than any force.

  29. Aurora Moore on March 7, 2013 at 1:55 pm

    Educational inequality in America is real and wrong, but her five-year sentence was for selling weed and crack to the cops. The war on drugs is more racist and damaging than Newport Public Schools and linking her incarceration with the quest for innovation in education as this article does is misleading. Schools become the battleground where racially motivated criminalization gets acted out (immigration in CA, AZ and Louisiana are obvious examples), but this rhetoric is just as easily grabbed by privatization and voucher advocates. I’m sure that racist NIMBY-ism played a role here but when it comes to her unjust incarceration the racist drug laws are to blame, not her desire for a good education.

    • Darnell Moore on March 7, 2013 at 4:03 pm

      Dear Aurora,

      Educational inequality and the so called “war on drugs” are in fact intricately linked particularly in spaces where black and brown adults and young people are disproportionately criminalized, which happens to be everywhere in the US.

      Having said that, it seems to me that the fact that she was sentenced for drug possession (which she was) AND fined for having registered her child in a school that was outside of the range of her domicile (which she did not have) are both part of a much larger and interconnected structural issue that cannot be so easily collapsed. Indeed, the quest for a “good education” among the black and brown and poor tend to be sidetracked by the school to prison / home to prison pipeline.

      Lastly, these spaces are reserved for love notes–messages that are meant to uplift Tanya. May we continue to stand against the intersecting forces of injustice in solidarity with her. Best, Darnell

  30. Aurora Moore on March 7, 2013 at 1:55 pm

    Educational inequality in America is real and wrong, but her five-year sentence was for selling weed and crack to the cops. The war on drugs is more racist and damaging than Newport Public Schools and linking her incarceration with the quest for innovation in education as this article does is misleading. Schools become the battleground where racially motivated criminalization gets acted out (immigration in CA, AZ and Louisiana are obvious examples), but this rhetoric is just as easily grabbed by privatization and voucher advocates. I’m sure that racist NIMBY-ism played a role here but when it comes to her unjust incarceration the racist drug laws are to blame, not her desire for a good education.

    • Darnell Moore on March 7, 2013 at 4:03 pm

      Dear Aurora,

      Educational inequality and the so called “war on drugs” are in fact intricately linked particularly in spaces where black and brown adults and young people are disproportionately criminalized, which happens to be everywhere in the US.

      Having said that, it seems to me that the fact that she was sentenced for drug possession (which she was) AND fined for having registered her child in a school that was outside of the range of her domicile (which she did not have) are both part of a much larger and interconnected structural issue that cannot be so easily collapsed. Indeed, the quest for a “good education” among the black and brown and poor tend to be sidetracked by the school to prison / home to prison pipeline.

      Lastly, these spaces are reserved for love notes–messages that are meant to uplift Tanya. May we continue to stand against the intersecting forces of injustice in solidarity with her. Best, Darnell

  31. Aurora Moore on March 7, 2013 at 1:55 pm

    Educational inequality in America is real and wrong, but her five-year sentence was for selling weed and crack to the cops. The war on drugs is more racist and damaging than Newport Public Schools and linking her incarceration with the quest for innovation in education as this article does is misleading. Schools become the battleground where racially motivated criminalization gets acted out (immigration in CA, AZ and Louisiana are obvious examples), but this rhetoric is just as easily grabbed by privatization and voucher advocates. I’m sure that racist NIMBY-ism played a role here but when it comes to her unjust incarceration the racist drug laws are to blame, not her desire for a good education.

    • Darnell Moore on March 7, 2013 at 4:03 pm

      Dear Aurora,

      Educational inequality and the so called “war on drugs” are in fact intricately linked particularly in spaces where black and brown adults and young people are disproportionately criminalized, which happens to be everywhere in the US.

      Having said that, it seems to me that the fact that she was sentenced for drug possession (which she was) AND fined for having registered her child in a school that was outside of the range of her domicile (which she did not have) are both part of a much larger and interconnected structural issue that cannot be so easily collapsed. Indeed, the quest for a “good education” among the black and brown and poor tend to be sidetracked by the school to prison / home to prison pipeline.

      Lastly, these spaces are reserved for love notes–messages that are meant to uplift Tanya. May we continue to stand against the intersecting forces of injustice in solidarity with her. Best, Darnell

  32. Aurora Moore on March 7, 2013 at 1:55 pm

    Educational inequality in America is real and wrong, but her five-year sentence was for selling weed and crack to the cops. The war on drugs is more racist and damaging than Newport Public Schools and linking her incarceration with the quest for innovation in education as this article does is misleading. Schools become the battleground where racially motivated criminalization gets acted out (immigration in CA, AZ and Louisiana are obvious examples), but this rhetoric is just as easily grabbed by privatization and voucher advocates. I’m sure that racist NIMBY-ism played a role here but when it comes to her unjust incarceration the racist drug laws are to blame, not her desire for a good education.

    • Darnell Moore on March 7, 2013 at 4:03 pm

      Dear Aurora,

      Educational inequality and the so called “war on drugs” are in fact intricately linked particularly in spaces where black and brown adults and young people are disproportionately criminalized, which happens to be everywhere in the US.

      Having said that, it seems to me that the fact that she was sentenced for drug possession (which she was) AND fined for having registered her child in a school that was outside of the range of her domicile (which she did not have) are both part of a much larger and interconnected structural issue that cannot be so easily collapsed. Indeed, the quest for a “good education” among the black and brown and poor tend to be sidetracked by the school to prison / home to prison pipeline.

      Lastly, these spaces are reserved for love notes–messages that are meant to uplift Tanya. May we continue to stand against the intersecting forces of injustice in solidarity with her. Best, Darnell

  33. Helen on March 7, 2013 at 2:05 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    your story makes me cry. you are such a powerful woman. your hope for your child is so beautiful. i hope that you come out of this situation stronger and more committed to ensure that your son has a better life. prove them wrong!

    your story is important and will never be forgotten. you have a chance to leave a legacy depending on the choices you make once you are out of prison. I hope you continue to educate yourself, align yourself with responsible people who care for you, and share your story.

    you are the rosa parks of this generation, don’t ever forget it.

    much love to you. stay strong.

  34. Helen on March 7, 2013 at 2:05 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    your story makes me cry. you are such a powerful woman. your hope for your child is so beautiful. i hope that you come out of this situation stronger and more committed to ensure that your son has a better life. prove them wrong!

    your story is important and will never be forgotten. you have a chance to leave a legacy depending on the choices you make once you are out of prison. I hope you continue to educate yourself, align yourself with responsible people who care for you, and share your story.

    you are the rosa parks of this generation, don’t ever forget it.

    much love to you. stay strong.

  35. Helen on March 7, 2013 at 2:05 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    your story makes me cry. you are such a powerful woman. your hope for your child is so beautiful. i hope that you come out of this situation stronger and more committed to ensure that your son has a better life. prove them wrong!

    your story is important and will never be forgotten. you have a chance to leave a legacy depending on the choices you make once you are out of prison. I hope you continue to educate yourself, align yourself with responsible people who care for you, and share your story.

    you are the rosa parks of this generation, don’t ever forget it.

    much love to you. stay strong.

  36. Helen on March 7, 2013 at 2:05 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    your story makes me cry. you are such a powerful woman. your hope for your child is so beautiful. i hope that you come out of this situation stronger and more committed to ensure that your son has a better life. prove them wrong!

    your story is important and will never be forgotten. you have a chance to leave a legacy depending on the choices you make once you are out of prison. I hope you continue to educate yourself, align yourself with responsible people who care for you, and share your story.

    you are the rosa parks of this generation, don’t ever forget it.

    much love to you. stay strong.

  37. Raquel Mack on March 7, 2013 at 2:26 pm

    Dee Tanya,

    We love you and we know the worth of you and your son. I’m happy to day that I stand behind you!

    <3 Raquel

  38. Raquel Mack on March 7, 2013 at 2:26 pm

    Dee Tanya,

    We love you and we know the worth of you and your son. I’m happy to day that I stand behind you!

    <3 Raquel

  39. Raquel Mack on March 7, 2013 at 2:26 pm

    Dee Tanya,

    We love you and we know the worth of you and your son. I’m happy to day that I stand behind you!

    <3 Raquel

  40. Raquel Mack on March 7, 2013 at 2:26 pm

    Dee Tanya,

    We love you and we know the worth of you and your son. I’m happy to day that I stand behind you!

    <3 Raquel

  41. Wanda Lotus on March 7, 2013 at 2:32 pm

    Tanya, I applaud you doing your best to do right by your child. The system may have won their case against you, but your actions show the world your child is well loved. Stay strong. I will hold a good thought for the two of you.

  42. Wanda Lotus on March 7, 2013 at 2:32 pm

    Tanya, I applaud you doing your best to do right by your child. The system may have won their case against you, but your actions show the world your child is well loved. Stay strong. I will hold a good thought for the two of you.

  43. Wanda Lotus on March 7, 2013 at 2:32 pm

    Tanya, I applaud you doing your best to do right by your child. The system may have won their case against you, but your actions show the world your child is well loved. Stay strong. I will hold a good thought for the two of you.

  44. Wanda Lotus on March 7, 2013 at 2:32 pm

    Tanya, I applaud you doing your best to do right by your child. The system may have won their case against you, but your actions show the world your child is well loved. Stay strong. I will hold a good thought for the two of you.

  45. Brittney Cooper on March 7, 2013 at 2:33 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    Thank you for your courage. Thank you for daring to dream of better possibilities for your son. Thank you for mothering him despite their attempts to unjustly criminalize you. You remind me of all that I love about Black mothers who make a way out of no way. I wish I had more eloquent words. I don’t because I simply cannot get over my profound sense that something is so very wrong when lock up Black mothers for doing the right thing.

    When I thought of you, though, Langston Hughes’ poem “Mother to Son” came to mind. The audacity, love, and care of the mother in this poem reminds me of you and I hope Langston’s words encourage you across the ages.

    Mother to Son:

    Well, son, I’ll tell you:
    Life for me ain’t been no crystal stair.
    It’s had tacks in it,
    And splinters,
    And boards torn up,
    And places with no carpet on the floor –
    Bare.
    But all the time
    I’se been a-climbin’ on,
    And reachin’ landin’s,
    And turnin’ corners,
    And sometimes goin’ in the dark
    Where there ain’t been no light.
    So boy, don’t you turn back.
    Don’t you set down on the steps
    ‘Cause you finds it’s kinder hard.
    Don’t you fall now –
    For I’se still goin’, honey,
    I’se still climbin’,
    And life for me ain’t been no crystal stair.

    Keep climbing, Tanya. We have your back.

  46. Brittney Cooper on March 7, 2013 at 2:33 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    Thank you for your courage. Thank you for daring to dream of better possibilities for your son. Thank you for mothering him despite their attempts to unjustly criminalize you. You remind me of all that I love about Black mothers who make a way out of no way. I wish I had more eloquent words. I don’t because I simply cannot get over my profound sense that something is so very wrong when lock up Black mothers for doing the right thing.

    When I thought of you, though, Langston Hughes’ poem “Mother to Son” came to mind. The audacity, love, and care of the mother in this poem reminds me of you and I hope Langston’s words encourage you across the ages.

    Mother to Son:

    Well, son, I’ll tell you:
    Life for me ain’t been no crystal stair.
    It’s had tacks in it,
    And splinters,
    And boards torn up,
    And places with no carpet on the floor –
    Bare.
    But all the time
    I’se been a-climbin’ on,
    And reachin’ landin’s,
    And turnin’ corners,
    And sometimes goin’ in the dark
    Where there ain’t been no light.
    So boy, don’t you turn back.
    Don’t you set down on the steps
    ‘Cause you finds it’s kinder hard.
    Don’t you fall now –
    For I’se still goin’, honey,
    I’se still climbin’,
    And life for me ain’t been no crystal stair.

    Keep climbing, Tanya. We have your back.

  47. Brittney Cooper on March 7, 2013 at 2:33 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    Thank you for your courage. Thank you for daring to dream of better possibilities for your son. Thank you for mothering him despite their attempts to unjustly criminalize you. You remind me of all that I love about Black mothers who make a way out of no way. I wish I had more eloquent words. I don’t because I simply cannot get over my profound sense that something is so very wrong when lock up Black mothers for doing the right thing.

    When I thought of you, though, Langston Hughes’ poem “Mother to Son” came to mind. The audacity, love, and care of the mother in this poem reminds me of you and I hope Langston’s words encourage you across the ages.

    Mother to Son:

    Well, son, I’ll tell you:
    Life for me ain’t been no crystal stair.
    It’s had tacks in it,
    And splinters,
    And boards torn up,
    And places with no carpet on the floor –
    Bare.
    But all the time
    I’se been a-climbin’ on,
    And reachin’ landin’s,
    And turnin’ corners,
    And sometimes goin’ in the dark
    Where there ain’t been no light.
    So boy, don’t you turn back.
    Don’t you set down on the steps
    ‘Cause you finds it’s kinder hard.
    Don’t you fall now –
    For I’se still goin’, honey,
    I’se still climbin’,
    And life for me ain’t been no crystal stair.

    Keep climbing, Tanya. We have your back.

  48. Brittney Cooper on March 7, 2013 at 2:33 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    Thank you for your courage. Thank you for daring to dream of better possibilities for your son. Thank you for mothering him despite their attempts to unjustly criminalize you. You remind me of all that I love about Black mothers who make a way out of no way. I wish I had more eloquent words. I don’t because I simply cannot get over my profound sense that something is so very wrong when lock up Black mothers for doing the right thing.

    When I thought of you, though, Langston Hughes’ poem “Mother to Son” came to mind. The audacity, love, and care of the mother in this poem reminds me of you and I hope Langston’s words encourage you across the ages.

    Mother to Son:

    Well, son, I’ll tell you:
    Life for me ain’t been no crystal stair.
    It’s had tacks in it,
    And splinters,
    And boards torn up,
    And places with no carpet on the floor –
    Bare.
    But all the time
    I’se been a-climbin’ on,
    And reachin’ landin’s,
    And turnin’ corners,
    And sometimes goin’ in the dark
    Where there ain’t been no light.
    So boy, don’t you turn back.
    Don’t you set down on the steps
    ‘Cause you finds it’s kinder hard.
    Don’t you fall now –
    For I’se still goin’, honey,
    I’se still climbin’,
    And life for me ain’t been no crystal stair.

    Keep climbing, Tanya. We have your back.

  49. Courtney Cooper on March 7, 2013 at 2:39 pm

    2 Timothy 3:14-15 – But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.

    It is to you God gives grace!

  50. Courtney Cooper on March 7, 2013 at 2:39 pm

    2 Timothy 3:14-15 – But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.

    It is to you God gives grace!

  51. Courtney Cooper on March 7, 2013 at 2:39 pm

    2 Timothy 3:14-15 – But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.

    It is to you God gives grace!

  52. Courtney Cooper on March 7, 2013 at 2:39 pm

    2 Timothy 3:14-15 – But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.

    It is to you God gives grace!

  53. Pamela Gilbert on March 7, 2013 at 2:45 pm

    This should never have gone to court. But then, a mother and child should not have to be homeless in America either.

  54. Pamela Gilbert on March 7, 2013 at 2:45 pm

    This should never have gone to court. But then, a mother and child should not have to be homeless in America either.

  55. Pamela Gilbert on March 7, 2013 at 2:45 pm

    This should never have gone to court. But then, a mother and child should not have to be homeless in America either.

  56. Pamela Gilbert on March 7, 2013 at 2:45 pm

    This should never have gone to court. But then, a mother and child should not have to be homeless in America either.

  57. Jessica Coates on March 7, 2013 at 2:52 pm

    We are with you. Love to you and your son.

  58. Jessica Coates on March 7, 2013 at 2:52 pm

    We are with you. Love to you and your son.

  59. Jessica Coates on March 7, 2013 at 2:52 pm

    We are with you. Love to you and your son.

  60. Jessica Coates on March 7, 2013 at 2:52 pm

    We are with you. Love to you and your son.

  61. Melissa Heard on March 7, 2013 at 2:55 pm

    I praise her for doing what was best for her child. As a mother, I would have done the same!! It’s a shame that she sits in jail for this when there are people who commit murder and sell drugs still walking the streets!!

  62. Melissa Heard on March 7, 2013 at 2:55 pm

    I praise her for doing what was best for her child. As a mother, I would have done the same!! It’s a shame that she sits in jail for this when there are people who commit murder and sell drugs still walking the streets!!

  63. Melissa Heard on March 7, 2013 at 2:55 pm

    I praise her for doing what was best for her child. As a mother, I would have done the same!! It’s a shame that she sits in jail for this when there are people who commit murder and sell drugs still walking the streets!!

  64. Melissa Heard on March 7, 2013 at 2:55 pm

    I praise her for doing what was best for her child. As a mother, I would have done the same!! It’s a shame that she sits in jail for this when there are people who commit murder and sell drugs still walking the streets!!

  65. Lou Stewart on March 7, 2013 at 2:56 pm

    Tanya, there are so many other reasons I could have seen your story in the news and yet, I am compelled to leave you a few words of support. I spent a number of years working in the juvenile correction system where I grew to learn about some of the heinous things that people do to their children.

    Your story stuck me deep, hard and right to the core of my belief that our country does little or nothing to protect and truly care for our youth. For all of the things you could have been charged with; I am moved that your foresight and vision was indeed in the best interest of your son.

    Know that you have set a standard in my mind that far exceeds the length you should have never had to go to just to create a good future for you son. Know that in time, that deed will speak to others like me who know that you are truly the kind of mother who can and will do what it takes to care for your child. God Bless and Keep you always.

  66. Lou Stewart on March 7, 2013 at 2:56 pm

    Tanya, there are so many other reasons I could have seen your story in the news and yet, I am compelled to leave you a few words of support. I spent a number of years working in the juvenile correction system where I grew to learn about some of the heinous things that people do to their children.

    Your story stuck me deep, hard and right to the core of my belief that our country does little or nothing to protect and truly care for our youth. For all of the things you could have been charged with; I am moved that your foresight and vision was indeed in the best interest of your son.

    Know that you have set a standard in my mind that far exceeds the length you should have never had to go to just to create a good future for you son. Know that in time, that deed will speak to others like me who know that you are truly the kind of mother who can and will do what it takes to care for your child. God Bless and Keep you always.

  67. Lou Stewart on March 7, 2013 at 2:56 pm

    Tanya, there are so many other reasons I could have seen your story in the news and yet, I am compelled to leave you a few words of support. I spent a number of years working in the juvenile correction system where I grew to learn about some of the heinous things that people do to their children.

    Your story stuck me deep, hard and right to the core of my belief that our country does little or nothing to protect and truly care for our youth. For all of the things you could have been charged with; I am moved that your foresight and vision was indeed in the best interest of your son.

    Know that you have set a standard in my mind that far exceeds the length you should have never had to go to just to create a good future for you son. Know that in time, that deed will speak to others like me who know that you are truly the kind of mother who can and will do what it takes to care for your child. God Bless and Keep you always.

  68. Lou Stewart on March 7, 2013 at 2:56 pm

    Tanya, there are so many other reasons I could have seen your story in the news and yet, I am compelled to leave you a few words of support. I spent a number of years working in the juvenile correction system where I grew to learn about some of the heinous things that people do to their children.

    Your story stuck me deep, hard and right to the core of my belief that our country does little or nothing to protect and truly care for our youth. For all of the things you could have been charged with; I am moved that your foresight and vision was indeed in the best interest of your son.

    Know that you have set a standard in my mind that far exceeds the length you should have never had to go to just to create a good future for you son. Know that in time, that deed will speak to others like me who know that you are truly the kind of mother who can and will do what it takes to care for your child. God Bless and Keep you always.

  69. jimena sarno on March 7, 2013 at 2:58 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    You are a brave and amazing fighter, and I’m hoping that your sentence is shortened so you can soon go on with your life next to your son, stronger than ever, and continue be the awesome, dedicated mom that you are. You are an example. Sending you lots of love!

  70. jimena sarno on March 7, 2013 at 2:58 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    You are a brave and amazing fighter, and I’m hoping that your sentence is shortened so you can soon go on with your life next to your son, stronger than ever, and continue be the awesome, dedicated mom that you are. You are an example. Sending you lots of love!

  71. jimena sarno on March 7, 2013 at 2:58 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    You are a brave and amazing fighter, and I’m hoping that your sentence is shortened so you can soon go on with your life next to your son, stronger than ever, and continue be the awesome, dedicated mom that you are. You are an example. Sending you lots of love!

  72. jimena sarno on March 7, 2013 at 2:58 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    You are a brave and amazing fighter, and I’m hoping that your sentence is shortened so you can soon go on with your life next to your son, stronger than ever, and continue be the awesome, dedicated mom that you are. You are an example. Sending you lots of love!

  73. Tami Bernard on March 7, 2013 at 3:14 pm

    To Tanya McDowell,
    You are a strong and powerful woman who is being done a terrible injustice. I respect you incredibly. Know that there are people out there championing for you right now. Know that we are disgusted by the fallacy of a system that would punish a mother for seeking betterment for her child and her child’s future – for doing exactly what this country has historically always encouraged. Know that we see you. And I would like to express a personal thank you to you. You have inspired me to stand up.

    Utter respect to you Tanya,
    Tami Bernard

  74. Tami Bernard on March 7, 2013 at 3:14 pm

    To Tanya McDowell,
    You are a strong and powerful woman who is being done a terrible injustice. I respect you incredibly. Know that there are people out there championing for you right now. Know that we are disgusted by the fallacy of a system that would punish a mother for seeking betterment for her child and her child’s future – for doing exactly what this country has historically always encouraged. Know that we see you. And I would like to express a personal thank you to you. You have inspired me to stand up.

    Utter respect to you Tanya,
    Tami Bernard

  75. Tami Bernard on March 7, 2013 at 3:14 pm

    To Tanya McDowell,
    You are a strong and powerful woman who is being done a terrible injustice. I respect you incredibly. Know that there are people out there championing for you right now. Know that we are disgusted by the fallacy of a system that would punish a mother for seeking betterment for her child and her child’s future – for doing exactly what this country has historically always encouraged. Know that we see you. And I would like to express a personal thank you to you. You have inspired me to stand up.

    Utter respect to you Tanya,
    Tami Bernard

  76. Tami Bernard on March 7, 2013 at 3:14 pm

    To Tanya McDowell,
    You are a strong and powerful woman who is being done a terrible injustice. I respect you incredibly. Know that there are people out there championing for you right now. Know that we are disgusted by the fallacy of a system that would punish a mother for seeking betterment for her child and her child’s future – for doing exactly what this country has historically always encouraged. Know that we see you. And I would like to express a personal thank you to you. You have inspired me to stand up.

    Utter respect to you Tanya,
    Tami Bernard

  77. Chi Osuji on March 7, 2013 at 3:20 pm

    Thanks Tanya for standing up for your kid’s right to a decent education! You did beyond the best you could and it is not forgotten!!

    May God be with you and your family!

    In solidarity,
    Chinyere Osuji

  78. Chi Osuji on March 7, 2013 at 3:20 pm

    Thanks Tanya for standing up for your kid’s right to a decent education! You did beyond the best you could and it is not forgotten!!

    May God be with you and your family!

    In solidarity,
    Chinyere Osuji

  79. Chi Osuji on March 7, 2013 at 3:20 pm

    Thanks Tanya for standing up for your kid’s right to a decent education! You did beyond the best you could and it is not forgotten!!

    May God be with you and your family!

    In solidarity,
    Chinyere Osuji

  80. Chi Osuji on March 7, 2013 at 3:20 pm

    Thanks Tanya for standing up for your kid’s right to a decent education! You did beyond the best you could and it is not forgotten!!

    May God be with you and your family!

    In solidarity,
    Chinyere Osuji

  81. Nampande Londe on March 7, 2013 at 3:25 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    My mother was a Zambian immigrant who moved to Canada in her early 20s. Just after she turned 30, she found herself a widow with two kids, a mortgage and half a university degree. She worked two jobs and finished that degree and was never home so that when I graduated, she was able to send me to the best university in the country. My mother is a hero. You are a hero. Because of her, I can go to law school, and do everything in my power so that no one can make it a crime to love and provide for your children.

    Love, Nampande

  82. Nampande Londe on March 7, 2013 at 3:25 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    My mother was a Zambian immigrant who moved to Canada in her early 20s. Just after she turned 30, she found herself a widow with two kids, a mortgage and half a university degree. She worked two jobs and finished that degree and was never home so that when I graduated, she was able to send me to the best university in the country. My mother is a hero. You are a hero. Because of her, I can go to law school, and do everything in my power so that no one can make it a crime to love and provide for your children.

    Love, Nampande

  83. Nampande Londe on March 7, 2013 at 3:25 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    My mother was a Zambian immigrant who moved to Canada in her early 20s. Just after she turned 30, she found herself a widow with two kids, a mortgage and half a university degree. She worked two jobs and finished that degree and was never home so that when I graduated, she was able to send me to the best university in the country. My mother is a hero. You are a hero. Because of her, I can go to law school, and do everything in my power so that no one can make it a crime to love and provide for your children.

    Love, Nampande

  84. Nampande Londe on March 7, 2013 at 3:25 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    My mother was a Zambian immigrant who moved to Canada in her early 20s. Just after she turned 30, she found herself a widow with two kids, a mortgage and half a university degree. She worked two jobs and finished that degree and was never home so that when I graduated, she was able to send me to the best university in the country. My mother is a hero. You are a hero. Because of her, I can go to law school, and do everything in my power so that no one can make it a crime to love and provide for your children.

    Love, Nampande

  85. Rev. Raedorah C. Stewart on March 7, 2013 at 3:33 pm

    Dear Tanya, be encouraged. We are outraged at this outrageous decision. I am passing your dilemma along to the A Better Chance of Wesport. This is a high school boarding program for young black scholars. With a mother like you, I can only imagine that is who you are raising. Praying for your appeals and good to come out of this re-direction in your life.

  86. Rev. Raedorah C. Stewart on March 7, 2013 at 3:33 pm

    Dear Tanya, be encouraged. We are outraged at this outrageous decision. I am passing your dilemma along to the A Better Chance of Wesport. This is a high school boarding program for young black scholars. With a mother like you, I can only imagine that is who you are raising. Praying for your appeals and good to come out of this re-direction in your life.

  87. Rev. Raedorah C. Stewart on March 7, 2013 at 3:33 pm

    Dear Tanya, be encouraged. We are outraged at this outrageous decision. I am passing your dilemma along to the A Better Chance of Wesport. This is a high school boarding program for young black scholars. With a mother like you, I can only imagine that is who you are raising. Praying for your appeals and good to come out of this re-direction in your life.

  88. Rev. Raedorah C. Stewart on March 7, 2013 at 3:33 pm

    Dear Tanya, be encouraged. We are outraged at this outrageous decision. I am passing your dilemma along to the A Better Chance of Wesport. This is a high school boarding program for young black scholars. With a mother like you, I can only imagine that is who you are raising. Praying for your appeals and good to come out of this re-direction in your life.

  89. Sue Stewart on March 7, 2013 at 3:54 pm

    You are in my thoughts and prayers as well as your family.

  90. Sue Stewart on March 7, 2013 at 3:54 pm

    You are in my thoughts and prayers as well as your family.

  91. Sue Stewart on March 7, 2013 at 3:54 pm

    You are in my thoughts and prayers as well as your family.

  92. Sue Stewart on March 7, 2013 at 3:54 pm

    You are in my thoughts and prayers as well as your family.

  93. Quinn on March 7, 2013 at 4:16 pm

    dear tanya,

    you are not alone. you deserve all the goodness in the world.

  94. Quinn on March 7, 2013 at 4:16 pm

    dear tanya,

    you are not alone. you deserve all the goodness in the world.

  95. Quinn on March 7, 2013 at 4:16 pm

    dear tanya,

    you are not alone. you deserve all the goodness in the world.

  96. Quinn on March 7, 2013 at 4:16 pm

    dear tanya,

    you are not alone. you deserve all the goodness in the world.

  97. Darnell Moore on March 7, 2013 at 4:18 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    Some will attempt to distract us from the real issue(s) at hand, by reminding us that you were sentenced for drug possession. We live in a country where A LOT of people use and distribute drugs, but the majority of them who are actually arraigned tend to be black and brown. And, even if that is the case, that drug laws continue to be used as a means to disproportionately criminalize people, young and old, is a signal that our true concern for the well-being of so many others has waned. I care about you like I care about so many friends and family members I know who have also been gripped by drug addiction…and those who have also been locked up for drug distribution. We have a collective work to do.

    But sister, like so many women I have to come know, you tried to do what was best for your child. I hope you realize that some who might point the finger at you may very well be guilty of the very same desire every time they fight to keep some others out of their kids’ schools, every time a child is accepted into a top tier school via the legacy of the family, et cetera.

    I hope that you can feel the love. I hope that your child can feel the love. May you rise and keep rising above and beyond containment walls…we will be sure to say your name on this side!!!

    With love, darnell

  98. Darnell Moore on March 7, 2013 at 4:18 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    Some will attempt to distract us from the real issue(s) at hand, by reminding us that you were sentenced for drug possession. We live in a country where A LOT of people use and distribute drugs, but the majority of them who are actually arraigned tend to be black and brown. And, even if that is the case, that drug laws continue to be used as a means to disproportionately criminalize people, young and old, is a signal that our true concern for the well-being of so many others has waned. I care about you like I care about so many friends and family members I know who have also been gripped by drug addiction…and those who have also been locked up for drug distribution. We have a collective work to do.

    But sister, like so many women I have to come know, you tried to do what was best for your child. I hope you realize that some who might point the finger at you may very well be guilty of the very same desire every time they fight to keep some others out of their kids’ schools, every time a child is accepted into a top tier school via the legacy of the family, et cetera.

    I hope that you can feel the love. I hope that your child can feel the love. May you rise and keep rising above and beyond containment walls…we will be sure to say your name on this side!!!

    With love, darnell

  99. Darnell Moore on March 7, 2013 at 4:18 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    Some will attempt to distract us from the real issue(s) at hand, by reminding us that you were sentenced for drug possession. We live in a country where A LOT of people use and distribute drugs, but the majority of them who are actually arraigned tend to be black and brown. And, even if that is the case, that drug laws continue to be used as a means to disproportionately criminalize people, young and old, is a signal that our true concern for the well-being of so many others has waned. I care about you like I care about so many friends and family members I know who have also been gripped by drug addiction…and those who have also been locked up for drug distribution. We have a collective work to do.

    But sister, like so many women I have to come know, you tried to do what was best for your child. I hope you realize that some who might point the finger at you may very well be guilty of the very same desire every time they fight to keep some others out of their kids’ schools, every time a child is accepted into a top tier school via the legacy of the family, et cetera.

    I hope that you can feel the love. I hope that your child can feel the love. May you rise and keep rising above and beyond containment walls…we will be sure to say your name on this side!!!

    With love, darnell

  100. Darnell Moore on March 7, 2013 at 4:18 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    Some will attempt to distract us from the real issue(s) at hand, by reminding us that you were sentenced for drug possession. We live in a country where A LOT of people use and distribute drugs, but the majority of them who are actually arraigned tend to be black and brown. And, even if that is the case, that drug laws continue to be used as a means to disproportionately criminalize people, young and old, is a signal that our true concern for the well-being of so many others has waned. I care about you like I care about so many friends and family members I know who have also been gripped by drug addiction…and those who have also been locked up for drug distribution. We have a collective work to do.

    But sister, like so many women I have to come know, you tried to do what was best for your child. I hope you realize that some who might point the finger at you may very well be guilty of the very same desire every time they fight to keep some others out of their kids’ schools, every time a child is accepted into a top tier school via the legacy of the family, et cetera.

    I hope that you can feel the love. I hope that your child can feel the love. May you rise and keep rising above and beyond containment walls…we will be sure to say your name on this side!!!

    With love, darnell

  101. Cathy Francis on March 7, 2013 at 5:06 pm

    Blessings and gratitude for your brave actions. Would that we all would exercise such courage for our loved ones!

  102. Cathy Francis on March 7, 2013 at 5:06 pm

    Blessings and gratitude for your brave actions. Would that we all would exercise such courage for our loved ones!

  103. Cathy Francis on March 7, 2013 at 5:06 pm

    Blessings and gratitude for your brave actions. Would that we all would exercise such courage for our loved ones!

  104. Cathy Francis on March 7, 2013 at 5:06 pm

    Blessings and gratitude for your brave actions. Would that we all would exercise such courage for our loved ones!

  105. Anthony Ross on March 7, 2013 at 5:25 pm

    Tanya,

    I just wanted to send you my thoughts. I am so appalled at what has happened to you, it makes me sick. You are very brave, and I hope you will find justice on your side soon. Stay strong. I will keep doing everything I can to make change in our racist, sexist, classist, county.

    With much respect,
    Anthony

  106. Anthony Ross on March 7, 2013 at 5:25 pm

    Tanya,

    I just wanted to send you my thoughts. I am so appalled at what has happened to you, it makes me sick. You are very brave, and I hope you will find justice on your side soon. Stay strong. I will keep doing everything I can to make change in our racist, sexist, classist, county.

    With much respect,
    Anthony

  107. Anthony Ross on March 7, 2013 at 5:25 pm

    Tanya,

    I just wanted to send you my thoughts. I am so appalled at what has happened to you, it makes me sick. You are very brave, and I hope you will find justice on your side soon. Stay strong. I will keep doing everything I can to make change in our racist, sexist, classist, county.

    With much respect,
    Anthony

  108. Anthony Ross on March 7, 2013 at 5:25 pm

    Tanya,

    I just wanted to send you my thoughts. I am so appalled at what has happened to you, it makes me sick. You are very brave, and I hope you will find justice on your side soon. Stay strong. I will keep doing everything I can to make change in our racist, sexist, classist, county.

    With much respect,
    Anthony

  109. Mercy on March 7, 2013 at 5:52 pm

    Dear Tanya,
    We used my grandmother’s address to attend another school. We walked and walked and walked. We worked side jobs on welfare, because we didn’t have enough to eat. We hid piecework in trash bags in the backyard, just in case a social worker stopped by. We did what we did to make ends meet. Love is always hard work in the world, but it will be and it matters. I am praying for you and your family, much love your way, Mercy

  110. Mercy on March 7, 2013 at 5:52 pm

    Dear Tanya,
    We used my grandmother’s address to attend another school. We walked and walked and walked. We worked side jobs on welfare, because we didn’t have enough to eat. We hid piecework in trash bags in the backyard, just in case a social worker stopped by. We did what we did to make ends meet. Love is always hard work in the world, but it will be and it matters. I am praying for you and your family, much love your way, Mercy

  111. Mercy on March 7, 2013 at 5:52 pm

    Dear Tanya,
    We used my grandmother’s address to attend another school. We walked and walked and walked. We worked side jobs on welfare, because we didn’t have enough to eat. We hid piecework in trash bags in the backyard, just in case a social worker stopped by. We did what we did to make ends meet. Love is always hard work in the world, but it will be and it matters. I am praying for you and your family, much love your way, Mercy

  112. Mercy on March 7, 2013 at 5:52 pm

    Dear Tanya,
    We used my grandmother’s address to attend another school. We walked and walked and walked. We worked side jobs on welfare, because we didn’t have enough to eat. We hid piecework in trash bags in the backyard, just in case a social worker stopped by. We did what we did to make ends meet. Love is always hard work in the world, but it will be and it matters. I am praying for you and your family, much love your way, Mercy

  113. Edy Chamness on March 7, 2013 at 6:02 pm

    Tanya,

    You are a beautiful mother, doing everything possible to get the very best education for your child. How the hell is that a crime?! God bless you and I’m sending out prayers to you from Austin, Texas.

  114. Edy Chamness on March 7, 2013 at 6:02 pm

    Tanya,

    You are a beautiful mother, doing everything possible to get the very best education for your child. How the hell is that a crime?! God bless you and I’m sending out prayers to you from Austin, Texas.

  115. Edy Chamness on March 7, 2013 at 6:02 pm

    Tanya,

    You are a beautiful mother, doing everything possible to get the very best education for your child. How the hell is that a crime?! God bless you and I’m sending out prayers to you from Austin, Texas.

  116. Edy Chamness on March 7, 2013 at 6:02 pm

    Tanya,

    You are a beautiful mother, doing everything possible to get the very best education for your child. How the hell is that a crime?! God bless you and I’m sending out prayers to you from Austin, Texas.

  117. Traci Rubner on March 7, 2013 at 6:18 pm

    Dear Tanya,
    I admire your determination to procure a quality education for your child. I’m deeply sorry to learn you were punished for your bravery. You’re dedication is inspirational. Keep the faith. I hope for a bright and beautiful future for you and your family.
    Blessed Be,
    Traci Rubner

  118. Traci Rubner on March 7, 2013 at 6:18 pm

    Dear Tanya,
    I admire your determination to procure a quality education for your child. I’m deeply sorry to learn you were punished for your bravery. You’re dedication is inspirational. Keep the faith. I hope for a bright and beautiful future for you and your family.
    Blessed Be,
    Traci Rubner

  119. Traci Rubner on March 7, 2013 at 6:18 pm

    Dear Tanya,
    I admire your determination to procure a quality education for your child. I’m deeply sorry to learn you were punished for your bravery. You’re dedication is inspirational. Keep the faith. I hope for a bright and beautiful future for you and your family.
    Blessed Be,
    Traci Rubner

  120. Traci Rubner on March 7, 2013 at 6:18 pm

    Dear Tanya,
    I admire your determination to procure a quality education for your child. I’m deeply sorry to learn you were punished for your bravery. You’re dedication is inspirational. Keep the faith. I hope for a bright and beautiful future for you and your family.
    Blessed Be,
    Traci Rubner

  121. Sawdie on March 7, 2013 at 6:30 pm

    Stay positive and strong. Your son will always know what you endured for him to get the best education possible and his pride in your efforts is the best reward. God is watching and your story will not be forgotten nor will it be stagnant. You will be free to choose how to raise your children and what is best for them. A mother’s work is never done, no matter the circumstances never stop to encourage your son to do his best.

  122. Sawdie on March 7, 2013 at 6:30 pm

    Stay positive and strong. Your son will always know what you endured for him to get the best education possible and his pride in your efforts is the best reward. God is watching and your story will not be forgotten nor will it be stagnant. You will be free to choose how to raise your children and what is best for them. A mother’s work is never done, no matter the circumstances never stop to encourage your son to do his best.

  123. Sawdie on March 7, 2013 at 6:30 pm

    Stay positive and strong. Your son will always know what you endured for him to get the best education possible and his pride in your efforts is the best reward. God is watching and your story will not be forgotten nor will it be stagnant. You will be free to choose how to raise your children and what is best for them. A mother’s work is never done, no matter the circumstances never stop to encourage your son to do his best.

  124. Sawdie on March 7, 2013 at 6:30 pm

    Stay positive and strong. Your son will always know what you endured for him to get the best education possible and his pride in your efforts is the best reward. God is watching and your story will not be forgotten nor will it be stagnant. You will be free to choose how to raise your children and what is best for them. A mother’s work is never done, no matter the circumstances never stop to encourage your son to do his best.

  125. Sabrina Ravindranath on March 7, 2013 at 6:44 pm

    You are a wonderful mother and made the best educational choice for your child. You are an extremely intelligent, capable mother. Don’t let the system make you feel like you have done something wrong. Sending lots of love, peace and support.

  126. Sabrina Ravindranath on March 7, 2013 at 6:44 pm

    You are a wonderful mother and made the best educational choice for your child. You are an extremely intelligent, capable mother. Don’t let the system make you feel like you have done something wrong. Sending lots of love, peace and support.

  127. Sabrina Ravindranath on March 7, 2013 at 6:44 pm

    You are a wonderful mother and made the best educational choice for your child. You are an extremely intelligent, capable mother. Don’t let the system make you feel like you have done something wrong. Sending lots of love, peace and support.

  128. Sabrina Ravindranath on March 7, 2013 at 6:44 pm

    You are a wonderful mother and made the best educational choice for your child. You are an extremely intelligent, capable mother. Don’t let the system make you feel like you have done something wrong. Sending lots of love, peace and support.

  129. Rachel on March 7, 2013 at 6:51 pm

    You are an inspiring mother!!! You sought out the best possible education for your son, and i’m sorry that you are being punished for this. Stay strong!

  130. Rachel on March 7, 2013 at 6:51 pm

    You are an inspiring mother!!! You sought out the best possible education for your son, and i’m sorry that you are being punished for this. Stay strong!

  131. Rachel on March 7, 2013 at 6:51 pm

    You are an inspiring mother!!! You sought out the best possible education for your son, and i’m sorry that you are being punished for this. Stay strong!

  132. Rachel on March 7, 2013 at 6:51 pm

    You are an inspiring mother!!! You sought out the best possible education for your son, and i’m sorry that you are being punished for this. Stay strong!

  133. Tamura A. Lomax on March 7, 2013 at 8:54 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    I admire any mother who loves her children enough to both desire and will the best for them. I honor you for seeking more for your son. I appreciate you for exhibiting love in a society that hasn’t loved you back. Simultaneously, I abhor a society that speaks out both sides of its neck when talking about pro-life and quality of life. I abhor a society that fails to see that everyone, regardless of property tax, deserves a good education. And I abhor a society that refuses to see your (and my) innate dignity and worth. I pray the universe envelops you and your son with love and justice while you’re away. Little boys absolutely need their mommies…and mommies need the unconditional love of their little boys…

  134. Tamura A. Lomax on March 7, 2013 at 8:54 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    I admire any mother who loves her children enough to both desire and will the best for them. I honor you for seeking more for your son. I appreciate you for exhibiting love in a society that hasn’t loved you back. Simultaneously, I abhor a society that speaks out both sides of its neck when talking about pro-life and quality of life. I abhor a society that fails to see that everyone, regardless of property tax, deserves a good education. And I abhor a society that refuses to see your (and my) innate dignity and worth. I pray the universe envelops you and your son with love and justice while you’re away. Little boys absolutely need their mommies…and mommies need the unconditional love of their little boys…

  135. Tamura A. Lomax on March 7, 2013 at 8:54 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    I admire any mother who loves her children enough to both desire and will the best for them. I honor you for seeking more for your son. I appreciate you for exhibiting love in a society that hasn’t loved you back. Simultaneously, I abhor a society that speaks out both sides of its neck when talking about pro-life and quality of life. I abhor a society that fails to see that everyone, regardless of property tax, deserves a good education. And I abhor a society that refuses to see your (and my) innate dignity and worth. I pray the universe envelops you and your son with love and justice while you’re away. Little boys absolutely need their mommies…and mommies need the unconditional love of their little boys…

  136. Tamura A. Lomax on March 7, 2013 at 8:54 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    I admire any mother who loves her children enough to both desire and will the best for them. I honor you for seeking more for your son. I appreciate you for exhibiting love in a society that hasn’t loved you back. Simultaneously, I abhor a society that speaks out both sides of its neck when talking about pro-life and quality of life. I abhor a society that fails to see that everyone, regardless of property tax, deserves a good education. And I abhor a society that refuses to see your (and my) innate dignity and worth. I pray the universe envelops you and your son with love and justice while you’re away. Little boys absolutely need their mommies…and mommies need the unconditional love of their little boys…

  137. Muna on March 7, 2013 at 10:31 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    Your story struck a personal chord with me. Growing up, I had a mother just like you. She was brave, enterprising, and made the best of what she had in life. She made a life for me just as you tried to make a life for your son. I abhor the corrupt justice system and the myriad unfair circumstances that contributed to where you are now. I want you to know that we remember you and speak your name in reverence. You did what was best for your child — and for that, I think of you as the paragon of what it means to be a mother.

    Sending you so much love,
    Muna

  138. Muna on March 7, 2013 at 10:31 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    Your story struck a personal chord with me. Growing up, I had a mother just like you. She was brave, enterprising, and made the best of what she had in life. She made a life for me just as you tried to make a life for your son. I abhor the corrupt justice system and the myriad unfair circumstances that contributed to where you are now. I want you to know that we remember you and speak your name in reverence. You did what was best for your child — and for that, I think of you as the paragon of what it means to be a mother.

    Sending you so much love,
    Muna

  139. Muna on March 7, 2013 at 10:31 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    Your story struck a personal chord with me. Growing up, I had a mother just like you. She was brave, enterprising, and made the best of what she had in life. She made a life for me just as you tried to make a life for your son. I abhor the corrupt justice system and the myriad unfair circumstances that contributed to where you are now. I want you to know that we remember you and speak your name in reverence. You did what was best for your child — and for that, I think of you as the paragon of what it means to be a mother.

    Sending you so much love,
    Muna

  140. Muna on March 7, 2013 at 10:31 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    Your story struck a personal chord with me. Growing up, I had a mother just like you. She was brave, enterprising, and made the best of what she had in life. She made a life for me just as you tried to make a life for your son. I abhor the corrupt justice system and the myriad unfair circumstances that contributed to where you are now. I want you to know that we remember you and speak your name in reverence. You did what was best for your child — and for that, I think of you as the paragon of what it means to be a mother.

    Sending you so much love,
    Muna

  141. Matthew Graber on March 7, 2013 at 10:49 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    My heart aches, and I’m crying. I’m reading so many beautiful love notes to you. Yet I know that you’ll be receiving these notes from behind prison walls – inside of a cage denying you the freedom to kiss and hold your child.

    Can we do anything for you? Can we do anything to help your son?

    With love,
    Matt Graber

  142. Matthew Graber on March 7, 2013 at 10:49 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    My heart aches, and I’m crying. I’m reading so many beautiful love notes to you. Yet I know that you’ll be receiving these notes from behind prison walls – inside of a cage denying you the freedom to kiss and hold your child.

    Can we do anything for you? Can we do anything to help your son?

    With love,
    Matt Graber

  143. Matthew Graber on March 7, 2013 at 10:49 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    My heart aches, and I’m crying. I’m reading so many beautiful love notes to you. Yet I know that you’ll be receiving these notes from behind prison walls – inside of a cage denying you the freedom to kiss and hold your child.

    Can we do anything for you? Can we do anything to help your son?

    With love,
    Matt Graber

  144. Matthew Graber on March 7, 2013 at 10:49 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    My heart aches, and I’m crying. I’m reading so many beautiful love notes to you. Yet I know that you’ll be receiving these notes from behind prison walls – inside of a cage denying you the freedom to kiss and hold your child.

    Can we do anything for you? Can we do anything to help your son?

    With love,
    Matt Graber

  145. Aimee Santos on March 8, 2013 at 12:15 am

    Dear Tanya,

    We should all be so brave as you, as resilient and enterprising, as to want the best education, neighborhood, community for your child as you do. This travesty reveals all that is racist and unjust in US society today. There is a growing movement of resistance, and may you feel its irresistable pull. And may the day you feel your son’s warm embrace come soon enough.

  146. Aimee Santos on March 8, 2013 at 12:15 am

    Dear Tanya,

    We should all be so brave as you, as resilient and enterprising, as to want the best education, neighborhood, community for your child as you do. This travesty reveals all that is racist and unjust in US society today. There is a growing movement of resistance, and may you feel its irresistable pull. And may the day you feel your son’s warm embrace come soon enough.

  147. Aimee Santos on March 8, 2013 at 12:15 am

    Dear Tanya,

    We should all be so brave as you, as resilient and enterprising, as to want the best education, neighborhood, community for your child as you do. This travesty reveals all that is racist and unjust in US society today. There is a growing movement of resistance, and may you feel its irresistable pull. And may the day you feel your son’s warm embrace come soon enough.

  148. Aimee Santos on March 8, 2013 at 12:15 am

    Dear Tanya,

    We should all be so brave as you, as resilient and enterprising, as to want the best education, neighborhood, community for your child as you do. This travesty reveals all that is racist and unjust in US society today. There is a growing movement of resistance, and may you feel its irresistable pull. And may the day you feel your son’s warm embrace come soon enough.

  149. Dawn Tefft on March 8, 2013 at 12:33 am

    Tanya,

    I agree that you made a savvy and loving choice. It’s a travesty that your wisdom and love have been criminalized. I support you.

    In love,
    Dawn

  150. Dawn Tefft on March 8, 2013 at 12:33 am

    Tanya,

    I agree that you made a savvy and loving choice. It’s a travesty that your wisdom and love have been criminalized. I support you.

    In love,
    Dawn

  151. Dawn Tefft on March 8, 2013 at 12:33 am

    Tanya,

    I agree that you made a savvy and loving choice. It’s a travesty that your wisdom and love have been criminalized. I support you.

    In love,
    Dawn

  152. Dawn Tefft on March 8, 2013 at 12:33 am

    Tanya,

    I agree that you made a savvy and loving choice. It’s a travesty that your wisdom and love have been criminalized. I support you.

    In love,
    Dawn

  153. S. on March 8, 2013 at 12:41 am

    Dear Tanya:

    I tried to find the perfect motherhood quote to describe your sacrifices but the perfect quote is you. You embody the type of mother I one day want to become, one so full of love for her children and one that does all she can with the resources she has to see that they get all of the things that they need. Your resilience in the face of a society hell bent on killing us slowly is admirable and encouraging.

    I truly wish I knew all the things to say to bring you peace and ease through the ordeals you are facing but I hope my love and prayers reach you in your time of loneliness and hold you.

    ’til we free

  154. S. on March 8, 2013 at 12:41 am

    Dear Tanya:

    I tried to find the perfect motherhood quote to describe your sacrifices but the perfect quote is you. You embody the type of mother I one day want to become, one so full of love for her children and one that does all she can with the resources she has to see that they get all of the things that they need. Your resilience in the face of a society hell bent on killing us slowly is admirable and encouraging.

    I truly wish I knew all the things to say to bring you peace and ease through the ordeals you are facing but I hope my love and prayers reach you in your time of loneliness and hold you.

    ’til we free

  155. S. on March 8, 2013 at 12:41 am

    Dear Tanya:

    I tried to find the perfect motherhood quote to describe your sacrifices but the perfect quote is you. You embody the type of mother I one day want to become, one so full of love for her children and one that does all she can with the resources she has to see that they get all of the things that they need. Your resilience in the face of a society hell bent on killing us slowly is admirable and encouraging.

    I truly wish I knew all the things to say to bring you peace and ease through the ordeals you are facing but I hope my love and prayers reach you in your time of loneliness and hold you.

    ’til we free

  156. S. on March 8, 2013 at 12:41 am

    Dear Tanya:

    I tried to find the perfect motherhood quote to describe your sacrifices but the perfect quote is you. You embody the type of mother I one day want to become, one so full of love for her children and one that does all she can with the resources she has to see that they get all of the things that they need. Your resilience in the face of a society hell bent on killing us slowly is admirable and encouraging.

    I truly wish I knew all the things to say to bring you peace and ease through the ordeals you are facing but I hope my love and prayers reach you in your time of loneliness and hold you.

    ’til we free

  157. Aria on March 8, 2013 at 12:45 am

    Dear Tanya,

    I think that your sentence is an outrageous miscarriage of justice, and I am so very sad that you and your son are now suffering through this imprisonment of yours. But I believe that your son will be better for always knowing two things: 1. that his mom cared enough about him and his future to do anything that was necessary to create it, and 2. that education is the key to that future.

    Like the writers before me, I pray that you will be wrapped in the strength and love of so many of us who are awed by your actions and who hold you up in our thoughts and prayers. I pray that you will find the strength to face each day and that the days will fly by between now and your release.

    With love,
    Aria

    P.S. I wonder if the folks who have posted this original article can give us an update on who is caring for Tanya’s son and where he is going to school? Perhaps there could be a national donation effort to help pay for a private school for this man? I would certainly donate, and I believe many others would, too.

  158. Aria on March 8, 2013 at 12:45 am

    Dear Tanya,

    I think that your sentence is an outrageous miscarriage of justice, and I am so very sad that you and your son are now suffering through this imprisonment of yours. But I believe that your son will be better for always knowing two things: 1. that his mom cared enough about him and his future to do anything that was necessary to create it, and 2. that education is the key to that future.

    Like the writers before me, I pray that you will be wrapped in the strength and love of so many of us who are awed by your actions and who hold you up in our thoughts and prayers. I pray that you will find the strength to face each day and that the days will fly by between now and your release.

    With love,
    Aria

    P.S. I wonder if the folks who have posted this original article can give us an update on who is caring for Tanya’s son and where he is going to school? Perhaps there could be a national donation effort to help pay for a private school for this man? I would certainly donate, and I believe many others would, too.

  159. Aria on March 8, 2013 at 12:45 am

    Dear Tanya,

    I think that your sentence is an outrageous miscarriage of justice, and I am so very sad that you and your son are now suffering through this imprisonment of yours. But I believe that your son will be better for always knowing two things: 1. that his mom cared enough about him and his future to do anything that was necessary to create it, and 2. that education is the key to that future.

    Like the writers before me, I pray that you will be wrapped in the strength and love of so many of us who are awed by your actions and who hold you up in our thoughts and prayers. I pray that you will find the strength to face each day and that the days will fly by between now and your release.

    With love,
    Aria

    P.S. I wonder if the folks who have posted this original article can give us an update on who is caring for Tanya’s son and where he is going to school? Perhaps there could be a national donation effort to help pay for a private school for this man? I would certainly donate, and I believe many others would, too.

  160. Aria on March 8, 2013 at 12:45 am

    Dear Tanya,

    I think that your sentence is an outrageous miscarriage of justice, and I am so very sad that you and your son are now suffering through this imprisonment of yours. But I believe that your son will be better for always knowing two things: 1. that his mom cared enough about him and his future to do anything that was necessary to create it, and 2. that education is the key to that future.

    Like the writers before me, I pray that you will be wrapped in the strength and love of so many of us who are awed by your actions and who hold you up in our thoughts and prayers. I pray that you will find the strength to face each day and that the days will fly by between now and your release.

    With love,
    Aria

    P.S. I wonder if the folks who have posted this original article can give us an update on who is caring for Tanya’s son and where he is going to school? Perhaps there could be a national donation effort to help pay for a private school for this man? I would certainly donate, and I believe many others would, too.

  161. sara hershkowitz on March 8, 2013 at 12:59 am

    Tanya, you are a profound inspiration and a blessing to our world. May you be protected, may you be safe, may you be honoured and celebrated for your love, your wisdom, your bravery.

  162. sara hershkowitz on March 8, 2013 at 12:59 am

    Tanya, you are a profound inspiration and a blessing to our world. May you be protected, may you be safe, may you be honoured and celebrated for your love, your wisdom, your bravery.

  163. sara hershkowitz on March 8, 2013 at 12:59 am

    Tanya, you are a profound inspiration and a blessing to our world. May you be protected, may you be safe, may you be honoured and celebrated for your love, your wisdom, your bravery.

  164. sara hershkowitz on March 8, 2013 at 12:59 am

    Tanya, you are a profound inspiration and a blessing to our world. May you be protected, may you be safe, may you be honoured and celebrated for your love, your wisdom, your bravery.

  165. Nur on March 8, 2013 at 1:27 am

    As we honour you as a strong, inspiring mother today, we should remember that you deserve honour, respect and admiration 24 hours a day every single day of the year regardless of that happening. A man once asked the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), “Who is most deserving of my respect?” The Prophet’s response was: “Your mother.” The inquirer pressed further, “And then [after my mother]?” The Prophet’s response was repeated: “Your mother.” This continued for a third time. You’re the one who brought your son into this world; no one has the right to disrespect you, because you unlocked the door and opened it for your son to enter education. I’m so angry at people with “power that be” cause they slammed the door against you as a mother for making education available to your own son. I’m praying for you and your son to be reunited soon! Insha’Allah!

    Sending rage, radiant darkness, and love to you from the District of Columbia! <3

  166. Nur on March 8, 2013 at 1:27 am

    As we honour you as a strong, inspiring mother today, we should remember that you deserve honour, respect and admiration 24 hours a day every single day of the year regardless of that happening. A man once asked the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), “Who is most deserving of my respect?” The Prophet’s response was: “Your mother.” The inquirer pressed further, “And then [after my mother]?” The Prophet’s response was repeated: “Your mother.” This continued for a third time. You’re the one who brought your son into this world; no one has the right to disrespect you, because you unlocked the door and opened it for your son to enter education. I’m so angry at people with “power that be” cause they slammed the door against you as a mother for making education available to your own son. I’m praying for you and your son to be reunited soon! Insha’Allah!

    Sending rage, radiant darkness, and love to you from the District of Columbia! <3

  167. Nur on March 8, 2013 at 1:27 am

    As we honour you as a strong, inspiring mother today, we should remember that you deserve honour, respect and admiration 24 hours a day every single day of the year regardless of that happening. A man once asked the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), “Who is most deserving of my respect?” The Prophet’s response was: “Your mother.” The inquirer pressed further, “And then [after my mother]?” The Prophet’s response was repeated: “Your mother.” This continued for a third time. You’re the one who brought your son into this world; no one has the right to disrespect you, because you unlocked the door and opened it for your son to enter education. I’m so angry at people with “power that be” cause they slammed the door against you as a mother for making education available to your own son. I’m praying for you and your son to be reunited soon! Insha’Allah!

    Sending rage, radiant darkness, and love to you from the District of Columbia! <3

  168. Nur on March 8, 2013 at 1:27 am

    As we honour you as a strong, inspiring mother today, we should remember that you deserve honour, respect and admiration 24 hours a day every single day of the year regardless of that happening. A man once asked the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), “Who is most deserving of my respect?” The Prophet’s response was: “Your mother.” The inquirer pressed further, “And then [after my mother]?” The Prophet’s response was repeated: “Your mother.” This continued for a third time. You’re the one who brought your son into this world; no one has the right to disrespect you, because you unlocked the door and opened it for your son to enter education. I’m so angry at people with “power that be” cause they slammed the door against you as a mother for making education available to your own son. I’m praying for you and your son to be reunited soon! Insha’Allah!

    Sending rage, radiant darkness, and love to you from the District of Columbia! <3

  169. Meryl on March 8, 2013 at 7:54 am

    Dear Tanya

    You are an inspiration. May your love for your son sustain you and may you find peace in the knowledge that you did your best for him.

    Much love and gratitude from South Africa

  170. Meryl on March 8, 2013 at 7:54 am

    Dear Tanya

    You are an inspiration. May your love for your son sustain you and may you find peace in the knowledge that you did your best for him.

    Much love and gratitude from South Africa

  171. Meryl on March 8, 2013 at 7:54 am

    Dear Tanya

    You are an inspiration. May your love for your son sustain you and may you find peace in the knowledge that you did your best for him.

    Much love and gratitude from South Africa

  172. Meryl on March 8, 2013 at 7:54 am

    Dear Tanya

    You are an inspiration. May your love for your son sustain you and may you find peace in the knowledge that you did your best for him.

    Much love and gratitude from South Africa

  173. Shawn on March 8, 2013 at 10:02 am

    Tanya,

    Your love and sacrifice for you son should be held up as an example, not demonized. Know that while you are going through a difficult time now, you and your son and all of us who are familiar with your story will benefit from the stand that you have taken. Stay strong.

  174. Shawn on March 8, 2013 at 10:02 am

    Tanya,

    Your love and sacrifice for you son should be held up as an example, not demonized. Know that while you are going through a difficult time now, you and your son and all of us who are familiar with your story will benefit from the stand that you have taken. Stay strong.

  175. Shawn on March 8, 2013 at 10:02 am

    Tanya,

    Your love and sacrifice for you son should be held up as an example, not demonized. Know that while you are going through a difficult time now, you and your son and all of us who are familiar with your story will benefit from the stand that you have taken. Stay strong.

  176. Shawn on March 8, 2013 at 10:02 am

    Tanya,

    Your love and sacrifice for you son should be held up as an example, not demonized. Know that while you are going through a difficult time now, you and your son and all of us who are familiar with your story will benefit from the stand that you have taken. Stay strong.

  177. Emily on March 8, 2013 at 10:05 am

    Tanya -

    Thank you for being who you are: someone who is larger than life as a parent to her children and as a human being. Thank you for showing us what it means to love your child enough to do whatever it took for his life to succeed, with you continually standing beside him. I will be thinking of and praying for those in the system controlling this ridiculous ruling to see that you are an inspiration, not a criminal.

  178. Emily on March 8, 2013 at 10:05 am

    Tanya -

    Thank you for being who you are: someone who is larger than life as a parent to her children and as a human being. Thank you for showing us what it means to love your child enough to do whatever it took for his life to succeed, with you continually standing beside him. I will be thinking of and praying for those in the system controlling this ridiculous ruling to see that you are an inspiration, not a criminal.

  179. Emily on March 8, 2013 at 10:05 am

    Tanya -

    Thank you for being who you are: someone who is larger than life as a parent to her children and as a human being. Thank you for showing us what it means to love your child enough to do whatever it took for his life to succeed, with you continually standing beside him. I will be thinking of and praying for those in the system controlling this ridiculous ruling to see that you are an inspiration, not a criminal.

  180. Emily on March 8, 2013 at 10:05 am

    Tanya -

    Thank you for being who you are: someone who is larger than life as a parent to her children and as a human being. Thank you for showing us what it means to love your child enough to do whatever it took for his life to succeed, with you continually standing beside him. I will be thinking of and praying for those in the system controlling this ridiculous ruling to see that you are an inspiration, not a criminal.

  181. Ingrid Meintjes on March 8, 2013 at 10:13 am

    Dear Tanya

    The world is upside down – when a mother who puts her child first, who wants the best for her child, and who does whatever she can to make sure her child has a better future – when that mother is treated the way you are – the world is off its axis. Its not fair. It makes no sense. And what can I say to you when you are experiencing this incomprehensible injustice? Nothing can make it better. But as a child from a ‘difficult’ upbringing…all I can say is, your son will remember that you put HIM first, that you loved him enough to struggle and strive for him despite the circumstances an unfair and unjust world visits upon so many, many, many women. This will be the rock from which he will launch into the world – knowing this incredible love. I hope you’re ok. So many people across the world are thinking of you. It may not make it better, I know.

    With love and respect, and faith in the world finding its centre again, re-aligning to all that is good and just – to saluting a mother’s love.
    Ingrid, in Cape Town, South Africa

  182. Ingrid Meintjes on March 8, 2013 at 10:13 am

    Dear Tanya

    The world is upside down – when a mother who puts her child first, who wants the best for her child, and who does whatever she can to make sure her child has a better future – when that mother is treated the way you are – the world is off its axis. Its not fair. It makes no sense. And what can I say to you when you are experiencing this incomprehensible injustice? Nothing can make it better. But as a child from a ‘difficult’ upbringing…all I can say is, your son will remember that you put HIM first, that you loved him enough to struggle and strive for him despite the circumstances an unfair and unjust world visits upon so many, many, many women. This will be the rock from which he will launch into the world – knowing this incredible love. I hope you’re ok. So many people across the world are thinking of you. It may not make it better, I know.

    With love and respect, and faith in the world finding its centre again, re-aligning to all that is good and just – to saluting a mother’s love.
    Ingrid, in Cape Town, South Africa

  183. Ingrid Meintjes on March 8, 2013 at 10:13 am

    Dear Tanya

    The world is upside down – when a mother who puts her child first, who wants the best for her child, and who does whatever she can to make sure her child has a better future – when that mother is treated the way you are – the world is off its axis. Its not fair. It makes no sense. And what can I say to you when you are experiencing this incomprehensible injustice? Nothing can make it better. But as a child from a ‘difficult’ upbringing…all I can say is, your son will remember that you put HIM first, that you loved him enough to struggle and strive for him despite the circumstances an unfair and unjust world visits upon so many, many, many women. This will be the rock from which he will launch into the world – knowing this incredible love. I hope you’re ok. So many people across the world are thinking of you. It may not make it better, I know.

    With love and respect, and faith in the world finding its centre again, re-aligning to all that is good and just – to saluting a mother’s love.
    Ingrid, in Cape Town, South Africa

  184. Ingrid Meintjes on March 8, 2013 at 10:13 am

    Dear Tanya

    The world is upside down – when a mother who puts her child first, who wants the best for her child, and who does whatever she can to make sure her child has a better future – when that mother is treated the way you are – the world is off its axis. Its not fair. It makes no sense. And what can I say to you when you are experiencing this incomprehensible injustice? Nothing can make it better. But as a child from a ‘difficult’ upbringing…all I can say is, your son will remember that you put HIM first, that you loved him enough to struggle and strive for him despite the circumstances an unfair and unjust world visits upon so many, many, many women. This will be the rock from which he will launch into the world – knowing this incredible love. I hope you’re ok. So many people across the world are thinking of you. It may not make it better, I know.

    With love and respect, and faith in the world finding its centre again, re-aligning to all that is good and just – to saluting a mother’s love.
    Ingrid, in Cape Town, South Africa

  185. Stephanie P on March 8, 2013 at 10:14 am

    Tanya,

    Your selfless act of love in motherhood is and should be an inspiration to women and men around the world. The sacrifice you now bear for your child is an infinite showing of unconditional love-something we all need a little more of. Your son is blessed to call you his mother. May the Lord watch over you and your family in this time of utter injustice, and bring you and your son peace now and always.

    In love, respect, and appreciation,

    Stephanie

  186. Stephanie P on March 8, 2013 at 10:14 am

    Tanya,

    Your selfless act of love in motherhood is and should be an inspiration to women and men around the world. The sacrifice you now bear for your child is an infinite showing of unconditional love-something we all need a little more of. Your son is blessed to call you his mother. May the Lord watch over you and your family in this time of utter injustice, and bring you and your son peace now and always.

    In love, respect, and appreciation,

    Stephanie

  187. Stephanie P on March 8, 2013 at 10:14 am

    Tanya,

    Your selfless act of love in motherhood is and should be an inspiration to women and men around the world. The sacrifice you now bear for your child is an infinite showing of unconditional love-something we all need a little more of. Your son is blessed to call you his mother. May the Lord watch over you and your family in this time of utter injustice, and bring you and your son peace now and always.

    In love, respect, and appreciation,

    Stephanie

  188. Stephanie P on March 8, 2013 at 10:14 am

    Tanya,

    Your selfless act of love in motherhood is and should be an inspiration to women and men around the world. The sacrifice you now bear for your child is an infinite showing of unconditional love-something we all need a little more of. Your son is blessed to call you his mother. May the Lord watch over you and your family in this time of utter injustice, and bring you and your son peace now and always.

    In love, respect, and appreciation,

    Stephanie

  189. Gerald I Parks II on March 8, 2013 at 10:33 am

    Tanya,
    Thank you for wanting so much for your child. I believe that your desire for your child is a part of a collective energy that sustains hope for the good of all children. I also believe that there are other energies that seek to overpower all in the name of privilege. Knowing that you were punished because of your love for your child makes me sad. Knowing that you love your child so much that you were willing to make an informed decision about your child’s life makes me happy. Tanya I will not call your decision a sacrifice that would imply that the actions taken against you were necessary for some moral outcome; there is no morality in someone paying a price for what rightfully belongs to them. Yes your child deserves the best education that could be provided and I thank you for making that happen.

  190. Gerald I Parks II on March 8, 2013 at 10:33 am

    Tanya,
    Thank you for wanting so much for your child. I believe that your desire for your child is a part of a collective energy that sustains hope for the good of all children. I also believe that there are other energies that seek to overpower all in the name of privilege. Knowing that you were punished because of your love for your child makes me sad. Knowing that you love your child so much that you were willing to make an informed decision about your child’s life makes me happy. Tanya I will not call your decision a sacrifice that would imply that the actions taken against you were necessary for some moral outcome; there is no morality in someone paying a price for what rightfully belongs to them. Yes your child deserves the best education that could be provided and I thank you for making that happen.

  191. Gerald I Parks II on March 8, 2013 at 10:33 am

    Tanya,
    Thank you for wanting so much for your child. I believe that your desire for your child is a part of a collective energy that sustains hope for the good of all children. I also believe that there are other energies that seek to overpower all in the name of privilege. Knowing that you were punished because of your love for your child makes me sad. Knowing that you love your child so much that you were willing to make an informed decision about your child’s life makes me happy. Tanya I will not call your decision a sacrifice that would imply that the actions taken against you were necessary for some moral outcome; there is no morality in someone paying a price for what rightfully belongs to them. Yes your child deserves the best education that could be provided and I thank you for making that happen.

  192. Gerald I Parks II on March 8, 2013 at 10:33 am

    Tanya,
    Thank you for wanting so much for your child. I believe that your desire for your child is a part of a collective energy that sustains hope for the good of all children. I also believe that there are other energies that seek to overpower all in the name of privilege. Knowing that you were punished because of your love for your child makes me sad. Knowing that you love your child so much that you were willing to make an informed decision about your child’s life makes me happy. Tanya I will not call your decision a sacrifice that would imply that the actions taken against you were necessary for some moral outcome; there is no morality in someone paying a price for what rightfully belongs to them. Yes your child deserves the best education that could be provided and I thank you for making that happen.

  193. Adrian on March 8, 2013 at 10:57 am

    God Bless You Tanya! Stand STRONG and PROUD! You have nothing to be ashamed of! The fact that-despite your circumstances you were in your right mind to send your son to school in the first place says alot about your strength! You were making sure he was getting an education-a quality education- so that he doesn’t repaet the same patterens you found yourself in. That should be applauded-not attacked! You are a survivor-Din’t give up! God Bless!

  194. Adrian on March 8, 2013 at 10:57 am

    God Bless You Tanya! Stand STRONG and PROUD! You have nothing to be ashamed of! The fact that-despite your circumstances you were in your right mind to send your son to school in the first place says alot about your strength! You were making sure he was getting an education-a quality education- so that he doesn’t repaet the same patterens you found yourself in. That should be applauded-not attacked! You are a survivor-Din’t give up! God Bless!

  195. Adrian on March 8, 2013 at 10:57 am

    God Bless You Tanya! Stand STRONG and PROUD! You have nothing to be ashamed of! The fact that-despite your circumstances you were in your right mind to send your son to school in the first place says alot about your strength! You were making sure he was getting an education-a quality education- so that he doesn’t repaet the same patterens you found yourself in. That should be applauded-not attacked! You are a survivor-Din’t give up! God Bless!

  196. Adrian on March 8, 2013 at 10:57 am

    God Bless You Tanya! Stand STRONG and PROUD! You have nothing to be ashamed of! The fact that-despite your circumstances you were in your right mind to send your son to school in the first place says alot about your strength! You were making sure he was getting an education-a quality education- so that he doesn’t repaet the same patterens you found yourself in. That should be applauded-not attacked! You are a survivor-Din’t give up! God Bless!

  197. Stephanie Angelique on March 8, 2013 at 11:22 am

    I keep you in my prayers because I honor your mother’s love. I honor your willingness to make sacrifices, and take risk for your child. I honor your strength to stand up to systematic corruptions. I honor you and I draw hope and courage from you.

  198. Stephanie Angelique on March 8, 2013 at 11:22 am

    I keep you in my prayers because I honor your mother’s love. I honor your willingness to make sacrifices, and take risk for your child. I honor your strength to stand up to systematic corruptions. I honor you and I draw hope and courage from you.

  199. Stephanie Angelique on March 8, 2013 at 11:22 am

    I keep you in my prayers because I honor your mother’s love. I honor your willingness to make sacrifices, and take risk for your child. I honor your strength to stand up to systematic corruptions. I honor you and I draw hope and courage from you.

  200. Stephanie Angelique on March 8, 2013 at 11:22 am

    I keep you in my prayers because I honor your mother’s love. I honor your willingness to make sacrifices, and take risk for your child. I honor your strength to stand up to systematic corruptions. I honor you and I draw hope and courage from you.

  201. Kelsey Jackson on March 8, 2013 at 12:18 pm

    Tanya,
    You’re a great mother who made a judgement call for the best interest of your child, like any good mother would. Thank you for showing us what it means to be brave and making sacrifices for your family. I will keep you lifted in my prayers.

  202. Kelsey Jackson on March 8, 2013 at 12:18 pm

    Tanya,
    You’re a great mother who made a judgement call for the best interest of your child, like any good mother would. Thank you for showing us what it means to be brave and making sacrifices for your family. I will keep you lifted in my prayers.

  203. Kelsey Jackson on March 8, 2013 at 12:18 pm

    Tanya,
    You’re a great mother who made a judgement call for the best interest of your child, like any good mother would. Thank you for showing us what it means to be brave and making sacrifices for your family. I will keep you lifted in my prayers.

  204. Kelsey Jackson on March 8, 2013 at 12:18 pm

    Tanya,
    You’re a great mother who made a judgement call for the best interest of your child, like any good mother would. Thank you for showing us what it means to be brave and making sacrifices for your family. I will keep you lifted in my prayers.

  205. Oscar D. on March 8, 2013 at 4:58 pm

    Dear Tanya and child,

    I am thinking of you and wishing well for you.

    Best,
    Oscar

  206. Oscar D. on March 8, 2013 at 4:58 pm

    Dear Tanya and child,

    I am thinking of you and wishing well for you.

    Best,
    Oscar

  207. Oscar D. on March 8, 2013 at 4:58 pm

    Dear Tanya and child,

    I am thinking of you and wishing well for you.

    Best,
    Oscar

  208. Oscar D. on March 8, 2013 at 4:58 pm

    Dear Tanya and child,

    I am thinking of you and wishing well for you.

    Best,
    Oscar

  209. Tucker farley on March 8, 2013 at 5:39 pm

    Dear Tanya,
    Stay strong.
    Love, Tucker

  210. Tucker farley on March 8, 2013 at 5:39 pm

    Dear Tanya,
    Stay strong.
    Love, Tucker

  211. Tucker farley on March 8, 2013 at 5:39 pm

    Dear Tanya,
    Stay strong.
    Love, Tucker

  212. Tucker farley on March 8, 2013 at 5:39 pm

    Dear Tanya,
    Stay strong.
    Love, Tucker

  213. Shani on March 9, 2013 at 1:18 am

    Tanya, it is awful that you are the victim of a profound injustice. I hope you write about your experience and grow the outrage that people feel about your situation. You are an amazing woman and mother and my thoughts and prayers are with you to be out of prison very soon and with your child where you belong!

  214. Shani on March 9, 2013 at 1:18 am

    Tanya, it is awful that you are the victim of a profound injustice. I hope you write about your experience and grow the outrage that people feel about your situation. You are an amazing woman and mother and my thoughts and prayers are with you to be out of prison very soon and with your child where you belong!

  215. Shani on March 9, 2013 at 1:18 am

    Tanya, it is awful that you are the victim of a profound injustice. I hope you write about your experience and grow the outrage that people feel about your situation. You are an amazing woman and mother and my thoughts and prayers are with you to be out of prison very soon and with your child where you belong!

  216. Shani on March 9, 2013 at 1:18 am

    Tanya, it is awful that you are the victim of a profound injustice. I hope you write about your experience and grow the outrage that people feel about your situation. You are an amazing woman and mother and my thoughts and prayers are with you to be out of prison very soon and with your child where you belong!

  217. Loren on March 9, 2013 at 8:19 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    I find absolutely nothing wrong with the choice you made. I am completely speechless after reading this article. I just wanted to say to keep your head up and I will keep you in my prayers. You are truly a great mother!!

  218. Loren on March 9, 2013 at 8:19 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    I find absolutely nothing wrong with the choice you made. I am completely speechless after reading this article. I just wanted to say to keep your head up and I will keep you in my prayers. You are truly a great mother!!

  219. Loren on March 9, 2013 at 8:19 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    I find absolutely nothing wrong with the choice you made. I am completely speechless after reading this article. I just wanted to say to keep your head up and I will keep you in my prayers. You are truly a great mother!!

  220. Loren on March 9, 2013 at 8:19 pm

    Dear Tanya,

    I find absolutely nothing wrong with the choice you made. I am completely speechless after reading this article. I just wanted to say to keep your head up and I will keep you in my prayers. You are truly a great mother!!

  221. Seth on March 16, 2013 at 5:59 pm

    You are a magnificent mother, Tanya. Despite what they say or do, never stop standing up for your children. We salute you, and send our deepest wishes and prayers.

  222. Seth on March 16, 2013 at 5:59 pm

    You are a magnificent mother, Tanya. Despite what they say or do, never stop standing up for your children. We salute you, and send our deepest wishes and prayers.

  223. Seth on March 16, 2013 at 5:59 pm

    You are a magnificent mother, Tanya. Despite what they say or do, never stop standing up for your children. We salute you, and send our deepest wishes and prayers.

  224. Seth on March 16, 2013 at 5:59 pm

    You are a magnificent mother, Tanya. Despite what they say or do, never stop standing up for your children. We salute you, and send our deepest wishes and prayers.

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