On Saturday, U.S. Representative Maxine Waters was one of the honorees at the 2017 Black Girls Rock Awards, and she entered the event to screams and applause, some of the loudest of the night.
The 78-year-old politician matched the excitement of the crowd with her own moving speech, and even referenced what has quickly become her catch phrase: “reclaiming my time.”
“I want you to know, if it was not for the love and respect shown to me by Black women, those right-wing ultra conservatives … they would have me believe I’m too Black, I’m too confrontational, I’m too tough, and I’m too disrespectful of them,” she said in her speech at the event. “But now I know I’m simply a strong, Black woman.”
“I don’t care how big you are, I don’t care how high you are, if you come for me, I’m coming for you,” she added.
Waters has earned the nickname “Auntie Maxine” with millennials who have loved her continued criticism of Republicans and of President Donald Trump. Videos of her no-nonsense and no-holds-barred approach to politics have gone viral, including a hearing in which she simply repeated, again and again, “reclaiming my time,” rather than being forced to listen to anyone at a congressional hearing try to take her down.