My question in the title refers to famous American women, women who’ve made an important difference in our country as we continue to celebrate Women’s History Month.
Some of you know that in 2020, we celebrate 100 years of American women’s right to vote. I must mention that some African American men and women have not had the right to vote for the past 100 years with poll taxes, literacy tests, the gerrymandering of districts and other methods used to suppress their voting.
Put that aside for a minute as it’s a different column. Do you believe that until the 19th amendment to the Constitution, women were prohibited from voting throughout the U.S.? Wrong. States such as Wyoming, Utah and others were allowing women to vote, and at times with certain conditions, but that subject is complex and is not the intent of my column today.
Get out your pencil or pen and match the following women with the description that best fits them:
___Patsy Takemoto Mink 1. Singer of the blues
___Margaret Sanger 2. Photographer
___Toni Morrison 3. Principal chief of the Cherokee Nation
___Babe Didrikson 4. Activist for women’s rights
___J. K. Rowling 5. Winner of Nobel Prize for Literature 1993
___Gloria Steinem 6. Designer of women’s clothes
___Rachel Carson 7. Secretary of Labor
___Frances Perkins 8. Advocate for birth control
___Margaret Chase Smith 9. Olympic medal winner
___Dorothea Lange 10. Author of books for young people
___Billie Holiday 11. First woman on the U.S. Supreme Court
___Wilma Mankiller 12. Early environmentalist
___Sandra Day O’Connor 13. Person chiefly responsible for Title IX
___Co Co Chanel 14. U.S. Senator
___ _________ 15. _________________________
Number 15 is blank. That space is for you to write the name of a woman you know who has had a positive influence on your life. Then call, write, e-mail or text that woman. If she is no longer among the living, contact one of her relatives. Be sure to indicate the ways in which she has had a decisive impact on your life.
And please consider passing your affirmation further by letting the many women in your life know that you appreciate them. Are there 5 or 10 or 15 or more? Just do it. I can provide the words: “You know March is Women’s History Month, and I want to thank you for …”
Vivian B. Blevins. Ph.D., a graduate of The Ohio State University, served as a community college president for 15 years in Kentucky, Texas, California, and Missouri before returning to Ohio to teach telecommunication employees from around the country and students at Edison State Community College and to work with veterans. You may reach her at 937-778- 3815 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Viewpoints expressed in the article are the work of the author.