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Hudson River is trending - but this is the name you should be hearing instead

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Picture: ASSOCIATED PRESS

#SayHerName

The failure to refer to a dead judge by her name, and instead referring to the name of the river she was found in, has sparked a debate about identity and the media.

On Wednesday night, the body of Sheila Abdus-Salaam was found dead in the Hudson River.

Abdus-Salaam was a judge on the New York Court of Appeals.

She was the first black woman and Muslim to be confirmed to the circuit.

The nominating governor, Andrew Cuomo of New York said in a statement:

Justice Sheila Abdus-Salaam was a trailblazing jurist whose life in public service was in pursuit of a more fair and more just New York for all,

As the first African-American woman to be appointed to the state’s Court of Appeals, she was a pioneer. Through her writings, her wisdom and her unshakable moral compass, she was a force for good whose legacy will be felt for years to come.

Tributes have poured in from friends, family, those who knew her, and social media.

However, Abdus-Salaam name did not trend on social media.

#HudsonRiver did.

 

 

 

In response to this organic phenomenon, click activists responded with a coordinated attempt to get her name more widely shared, and replace #HudsonRiver.

 

#SayHerName was their cry.

Though some were spelling her surname 'Adbas' and some 'Abdus', (the correct form is 'Abdus')

 

Regardless, the effort appears to have had some effect. #SheilaAbdusSalaam has been trending alongside #sayhername for at least 11 hours.

 

 

 

 

 

The cause of Justice Abdus-Salaam's death has not yet to be ascertained.

HT Independent


More: Women in politics around the world, mapped​

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