It's been a busy week, with lots of fireworks displays- every night from Friday through Tuesday where I live- and a short work week. This week, some stories that caught my eye were a woman who embodies the spirit of patriotic service, two anniversaries about women and sports, the story behind a "Ms." - the title, not the magazine- and a mysterious photograph.
1) As we celebrated on the 4th of July this week, I thought of this interview with 3-star Army General Nadja West, West Point graduate, physician, and the first African-American woman to hold that rank.
2) A League of Their Own turned 25 recently. You might remember a short scene where an African-American spectator picks up a stray ball and throws it back to Geena Davis's character- with an arm that catches the character off guard. The AAGPBL- and Major League Baseball- were whites-only at the time. Apparently, the film's producers were not happy that they couldn't have a diverse cast, and included the scene to remind the audience that segregation barred talented women of color from playing, too.
3) On the subject of sports and landmark anniversaries, Title IX turned 45 a few weeks ago. The law states that, "No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance." Short but powerful.
4) I never knew the story of how "Ms." became a commonly accepted title- and the one I use most. Turns out, a woman named Sheila Michaels advocated for and promoted its adoption.
6) Did you hear about the photograph that people think shows Amelia Earhart after her plane crash?The idea that she could have landed in the Marshall Islands is certainly thought-provoking!