It’s been said for years that behind every great man there is a great woman. Is there truth behind this saying? I would say so. Is it always true? I can’t argue that it is. But, I can argue that some of our greatest male leaders have been fortunate enough to lead with the strength of a good woman standing by their side. That’s one of the reasons why our nation is so in love with President Obama and his wife, Michelle. People love to see a powerful couple that exudes love and strength.
Two of the greatest leaders of our time, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Malcolm X, were able to lead with the love and support of their spouses, Coretta Scott King and Betty Shabazz. As the wives of two men with big dreams, these incredible women were able to provide love, encouragement, and support to Malcolm X and Dr. King. They stood by their husbands, knowing the danger associated with their work — knowing that the drive and dedication their husband’s possessed could lead to their deaths, leaving them to raise their children and carry on their husbands’ dreams alone.
On February 2, Lifetime Television will air the world premiere of “Betty & Coretta,” a film that shares the story of Dr. Betty Shabazz (Mary J. Blige) and Coretta Scott King (Angela Bassett). This film looks at how these women faced incredible adversity, but found the strength to stand tall through it all. Imagine losing your husband to the hands of a brutal killer and then mourning his death publicly. Then, imagine having to stay strong enough to raise your children, without a father in the home, and still carry on your husband’s legacy. The pressure these women endured is unimaginable.
When we think about the day-to-day stress we face as mothers, we often look for another mother we can talk to about things — someone who understands our experience, and can appreciate our struggles. “Betty & Coretta” will depict what it was like for Coretta Scott King to share her pain and wisdom with Betty Shabazz when her husband, Dr. King (Malik Yoba), was killed 3 years after Malcolm X (Lindsay Owen Pierre). Shabazz was left to mother six children alone after her husband’s assassination, and Scott King was left to mother four. Such a sad way to develop a bond, indeed, but the bond these two women had must have been like no other.
I know that if my husband were taken from us unexpectedly, life for us would be incredibly difficult. We have two children. What would I tell them? How would I manage? How would I stay strong, despite the pain? And these are only some of the issues Betty and Coretta had to face, because their world was so much more complicated than mine.
The story of these two extraordinary women and the connection they shared is certainly one to watch. Their relationship spanned over three decades, and this Lifetime movie will focus on how that relationship developed and the impact it had on their lives, and on the civil rights movement.
Betty & Coretta airs on Lifetime on Saturday, February 2nd at 8pm, ET. Take a look at the movies “sneak peak” below:
BMWK Family — Will you be watching “Betty & Coretta” this Saturday?
Photo and Video Credit: Lifetime Television