Sunday, February 11, 2007

A life in dissent

Since we are swimming against the tide this morning with General Odom and Barack Obama, let us pause to celebrate the life of someone who spent most of her life in active opposition to war, injustice, intolerance and the complacency that made them possible: Cynthia Foster, who died this week in Massachusetts. The Boston Globe has her obituary today, from which comes the following excerpt:

"In the 1940s, Foster "picketed segregated dime stores, department stores, and lunch counters in Washington, demonstrated at bus stations and at a segregated YMCA until the management flooded the ventilating system with ammonia fumes to drive her out. In 1963, she was among the 250,000 who marched on Washington for equal rights [the Rev. Martin Luther King 'I Have a Dream' march]. In 1971, she led 3,000 people to a demonstration on Boston City Hall Plaza to protest the Vietnam War."

At the time of her death this week at age 99, she was still waging a decades-long fight with the IRS over the use of her federal taxes for military spending. Her family says the scheduling of her memorial service for April l5, the annual filing deadline, is purely incidental. I wonder about that...


Anonymous Anonymous said...

We have truly lost two strong, firely women with Foster & Ivins. I sometimes wonder if one of the benefits of fighting for women's rights in the 60s-70s helped create a fighting spirit that I'm not sure I see in younger women today.

I hope I see wrong.

1:48 PM  
Blogger Carol Gee said...

Buckaroo, thanks for the notice about the great woman, whom I did not know until now. But that is too often the way with such special folks who soldier on as they do. They do it out of principle, not for note. Bless Ms. Foster.

5:49 PM  

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