Do Not Enter, Employees Only, Faculty Only, Keep Out, Staff Only Beyond This Point, No Entry: Ticket Holders Only, No Trespassing, Members Only. We’ve all encountered signs like these. Signs that exclude. Signs that denote privilege and entitlement. Signs that leave us longing for the right to access the treasures and opportunities which wait behind the doors. […]
I’m a southern girl, the middle child, one of three daughters in my family of five. My daddy gloried in raising up three, strong-willed women. He taught us early on to assert ourselves, with frequent reminders to never let anyone walk all over us, to stand up for ourselves because we mattered. He believed we could do anything we set our minds to, challenging us and giving his all as he raced us around the go-cart track, pushing us to play our best during family basketball games, never taking it easy because we were girls.
I admired my dad and longed for his approval, and there was never a moment from my childhood, adolescence, or adulthood when I didn’t receive it. When meeting others, he introduced my sisters and me with the pride of an Olympian, placing his arm around our shoulders and smiling down on us, his three gold medals.
Was it then I became an Egalitarian? Did my dad’s ability to see beyond my gender to my soul shape my views on my place in the world?