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Words from Jean Sheridan

Published: Tuesday, Oct. 30, 2012 11:48 a.m. CST • Updated: Tuesday, Oct. 30, 2012 11:50 a.m. CST

From Robert Denton

Florida

I live in Florida now, but I received this from my high school English literature teacher, and I was moved enough by the importance and gravity of the message that I believe everyone should read it:

"I have a new granddaughter. Her name is Aubrey Mae. Don accuses of me of interjecting that tidbit of information into every conversation, so I thought I’d get it out of the way early on.

You see, I’ll soon be 65 years old. As a young woman in the 1970s, I supported the feminist movement. I stood up in support of women’s rights, decried the policies that seemed to keep women in limited if traditional roles. I would have burned my bra, had the occasion arisen and had my bra been big enough to even start a fire.

Today, many of those issues that brought me to my feet, and fired me up, so to speak, no longer affect me personally. I’m no longer concerned about access to contraceptives, whether through my insurance or through Planned Parenthood. I seriously doubt that I will ever need to seek a back alley abortion should Roe vs Wade be repealed.

I’m retired, so equal pay for equal work is really, well, no skin off my nose as my grandmother would have said. I have no children at home so flex time to cook and care for them doesn’t concern me either.

I’ve been married to the same old boy for 40 years, so if Iowa succeeds in repealing the same-sex marriage act, that change won’t impact me in any way.

To tell you the truth, I can’t think anything even remotely considered a women’s issue that might affect me personally in any way. So, if the issues being debated today in no way affect me personally, why do I take them so personally?

Did I mention I have a new granddaughter? Her name is Aubrey Mae."

– Jean Sheridan, East Union High School, Afton.

Editor's note: This excerpt was reprinted with permission from Jean Sheridan.

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