It is March, Women’s History Month, a month to honor and show respect for women and their accomplishments and have compassion for their challenges. 

In 2002, a book was published entitled, “That Takes Ovaries: Females and Their Brazen Acts.” The book is a collection of individually written stories by women that encounter situations in which they exhibit gumption or actions “that takes ovaries”, an expression akin to the one for men who exhibit gumption, “That takes balls.”

Anyway, in one of the stories in this book, a woman is awakened by a noise in her apartment.  When she gets up and goes into her living room, she encounters an unknown man who has broken in.  She does not hesitate to verbally challenge his presence there several times. He admits that he is in there to get some money.  The woman is scared, of course, and is wondering how to get him out.  She does not know where the keys are to her double- bolted front door. 

At some point, the woman notices her poster of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on the wall. The would-be burglar is a man of color. The woman says as she points to the poster, “You would look Martin Luther King in the eye and continue to rob this house? You would know that the residents of this home believe in the causes of Black people, and you would still try to steal from them?” (excerpt from “Preaching to the Convicted” by Kathleen A. Tarr)

The woman continues to lecture, pointing out various women and men dedicated to the cause of freedom for Black people. The would-be burglar cries. The woman, thanks to the knowledge of the would-be-burglar, locates her keys, opens the door and the would-be burglar exits. 

It is Women’s History Month.  Recognize and celebrate the women in our lives.

Peggy Tarr

Peggy Tarr has been a columnist for the Evanston RoundTable since its founding in 1998. Born in Bruce Springsteen's hometown of Freehold, New Jersey, she graduated from Rutgers University with a degree...