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Doris Adelaide Derby, another SNCC activist, remembers that the challenge and urgency of the freedom struggle was a formative experience for young activist women, who had to learn resourcefulness on the job: “I always did what I wanted to do. And I found that when I came up with ideas and I was ready to work to see it through, and I think that happened with a lot of women in SNCC.We needed all hands on deck, and so, when we found ourselves in situations, we had to rely on whoever was around.
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notes that "one in two women will die of heart disease or stroke, compared with one in 25 women who will die of breast cancer." Kelly Horne, Kim Worlow, Karry Bass, Judy Marshall, Donna Powell, Brenda Allen, Ashley Hunter, Renee Bartholomae, Lucinda Blair, Martha Grant, Linda Howell, Margie Roelands, Estella Tullgren, Patty Shay, Deb Peterson, Stacy White, Karen Montgomery. Gwendolyn Zoharah Simmons was a member of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), and one of three women chosen to be a field director for the Mississippi Freedom Summer Project.She discusses the difficulties she faced in this position and notes that gender equality was not a given, but had to be fought for: “I often had to struggle around issues related to a woman being a project director. We had to fight to get a good car because the guys would get first dibs on everything, and that wasn’t fair…it was a struggle to be taken seriously by the leadership, as well as by your male colleagues.” She continues, “One of the things that we often don’t talk about, but there was sexual harassment that often happened toward the women.Back in the 80s, Pepsi was criticized for something called Pepsi Pretty. This would make a great Power Point presentation for a speech.To rise to the top of management at Pepsi, the critics said, you'd better be tall and attractive, whether you were a woman or a man. You could even involve the class by having them play a game in which they have to choose teams. Blow this stereotype wide open by finding women who ride and interviewing them. Magazine" and the assignment completely changed her view of women who ride.That was back in the '30s and '40s before it became fashionable or popular for women to travel.You have women who subsequently held positions in the NAACP nationally as program directors and as leaders of various divisions.” She goes on to discuss the contributions of many women to the success of the NAACP.A woman at my dental office recently shared with me that she won shooting awards when she was a Marine, and recently completed a class on carrying concealed weapons. But when it happens to your best friend, the gloves come off. Contrast that with the obsession many Western women have with every single hair on their bodies. We are drawn to stories in which cheating plays a part, and are willing to shrug off cheating when we believe it results in true love.I never understood that because she was in fact the leader in Nashville. That they weren't into the trivia of fashion and dressing up.Though they were attractive women and they took care of themselves, but they weren’t the kind of trophy wives for the med school students and they weren’t—some of them might have been members of the Greek letter organizations, but most of them I suspect weren’t.