WOMEN & PEACE MARCH 24

Olive SCHREINER born Wittebergen, South Africa 1855 (d. 1920). “Citizen of the World” Nonviolent writer who opposed Rhodes, prophesied and opposed Boer War and World War I. Environmentalist, close friend of Gandhi. Quote: “On that day, when the woman takes her place beside the man in the governance and arrangement of external affairs of her race will also be the day that heralds the death of war as a means of arranging human differences.” (Woman & Labor).

Agnes MCPHAIL born Proton, Ontario 1890 (d. 1954). Journalist and pacifist politician. First Canadian woman member of Parliament 1921-40, and first woman member of League of Nations Disarmament Committee 1929. Opposed draft in World War I. Quote: “Never Retreat, Never Explain, Never Apologize”.

Dorothy Irene HEIGHT born Richmond VA 1912. African-American civil rights leader with Martin L. King; 40 years president of National Council of Negro Women 1957-98. International work in India and South Africa. Quote: “As more women enter public life, I see developing a more humane society.”

Dorothy Marie HENNESSEY born 1913. Franciscan nun arrested at Nevada Test Site in protest against nuclear weapons; banned from Omaha Strategic Air Command base. Walked across US to protest Cold War. Marched for civil rights and helped Cesar Chavez. She and her sister Gwen sentenced to 6 months for protest at School of Americas 2001 (age 88). Quote: I feel that it’s our duty. We can’t protest everything, but we can pick out some of the worst things to protest, and that’s what I’ve tried to do.” (20 July 2001).

Betty BURKES born 1942. Teacher of peace and nonviolence. Chair of American WILPF. Peace Corps Volunteer Ethiopia. Quote:”Love is a great teacher” (2007). “If we don’t address what’s in other people’s hearts and minds, if we don’t engage each other in a dialogue, then all the declarations on human rights will not matter…If we don’t address the things that separate us, we will not deliver what we’re after. What we’re really after is creating communities that sustain life and do not promote war and death.” (8 Dec. 2001).

PEACEFUL EVENTS BY WOMEN ON THIS DAY:

1970: Jane Addams House, national headquarters of WILPF, Washington DC, burned down at peak of protest against Vietnam War in suspected arson.

2004: First “Peace Matters” lecture Cairo by Swanee Hunt, sponsored by Susanne Mubarak.

MARCH 25

Matilda Joslyn GAGE born Cicero NY 1826 (d. 1898). Feminist and Suffragist leader and historian. Co-author with Anthony and Stanton of “Declaration of Rights” of women at Philadelphia bicentennial. Organized International Council of Women 1888. Quote: “There is a word sweeter than Mother, Home, or Heaven; that word is Liberty.” (her gravestone).

Gloria STEINEM born Toledo 1934. Pacifist feminist editor, writer and nonviolent activist. Bowles Fellowship in India; founding editor Ms magazine 1972. Supported United Farm Workers. Opposed Vietnam War with tax resistance 1965. Active in Nuclear Freeze. Early (Sept. 24) opponent of Iraq War. Quote: “From pacifist to terrorist, each person condemns violence – and then adds one cherished case in which it may be justified.”

St. CATHERINE of Siena born Siena 1349. First Woman Diplomat, active peacemaker in Italian civil wars 1390, as Florentine envoy 1376, Papal diplomat 1378, Roman Republic 1380. Patroness of Europe. Quote: “not by the sword or by war or by violence” could good be achieved, but”`through peace”.

Karla SCHEFTER born Allenstein, E. Prussia 1942. Founder of hospital Chak-e-Wardak, Afghanistan 1989. One of 1000 women Nobel Prize nominees. Founded Committee for Promotion of Medical & Humanitarian Aid 1993. Quote: “Over every mountain there is a path.”

PEACEFUL EVENTS BY WOMEN ON THIS DAY:

1638: Anne Hutchinson excommunicated Boston for independence of religious views.

1909: Start of Women’s Satyagraha in South Africa with establishment of Indian Women’s Association.

1915: Sisterhood of International Peace founded Melbourne by Eleanor May Moore.

1955: Start of Committee for Nuclear Disarmament (CND) with public notice of anti-nuclear campaign.

1965: Viola Liuzzo murdered in Selma civil rights campaign.

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