News From Terre Haute, Indiana

March 27, 2014

Readers' Forum: March 28, 2014


TERRE HAUTE — Do you know our founding mothers?

This is in response to the piece titled “25 years later, ‘influentials’ assess long road of progress for women,” published on March 22, 2014, and written by Mark Bennett.

It was a great story about a great group of contemporary women leaders. Thanks.

Taking nothing away from this group of women, local communities have always been filled with women who are what the great historians Mary Beard and Gerda Lerner called community builders.

Study the history of local progress in city after city going back into the 19th century and you will find hospitals, charitable organizations, artistic institutions and much more being originated in theory and being created in practice by women and women’s groups.

Womens’ volunteer work did not begin and end with selling home-baked cakes for local charities. They put their heads together and identified the needs of their communities that were not being met by the powers that be, the  male-controlled political and economic power structure. After the hospitals, libraries, theaters and countless other necessary centers of civilization and human progress were put in place, thanks to the initiatives and drive of women, these centers were turned over to the administration of men.

And the women and women’s groups behind these first giant steps into better, kinder, more informed communities? They too often disappeared, never to be read about in the history books or honored on commemorative sites, such as, for example, Terre Haute’s Walk of Fame.

It’s Women’s History Month. Do you know who your founding mothers were? Why not?

— Gary W. Daily

Terre Haute

Thoughtful act was appreciated

Every day we open the newspaper or turn on the television to reports of violence, hatred and a society that has little to no value for human life. It saddens me. I always open the paper hoping to read a feel-good story. Well, today my paper didn’t have anything great in it, but the way that it arrived, put a smile on my face.

I woke up to the most beautiful spring morning I could have asked for especially considering the harsh winter we’ve endured. I opened my front door, which leads to an enclosed porch, and neatly placed against my door was a package that had been delivered by UPS. On top of the UPS package was my morning newspaper.

The UPS driver had picked my paper up out of my yard and brought it in. This may not seem like a big deal to most but I thought it was the most considerate act, and it truly brought a smile to my face and set the tone for the rest of my day.

There was a time when these actions were commonplace, but that isn’t the case in today’s society, and I am grateful to whomever that delivery driver was. They don’t necessarily know who I am or if I have anything restricting my mobility that would make those steps difficult. I do not, but if I had, it would have been a great physical assistance as well.

I encourage everyone to think about that the next time you rush through life instead of helping someone with an extra second of your time. To that driver, thank you from the bottom of my heart for brightening my day with your random act of kindness, and may your days be as blessed as you are a blessing.

— Gloria Swayze

Terre Haute