I always get inspiration for my blogs from observing things around me. Whenever I notice something that triggers my brain to pen a few words, I wonder if the person, or the person(s) involved in the event/occurrence knows just how provocative their behavior is. A few days ago, I was reading a short article in my local newspaper about the new remake of the movie Lion King. It seems some experts in lion behavior had an issue with Mufasa assuming responsibility for leading the pride. According to these experts, it’s the female lion that leads the pride in nature. I used to watch a lot of Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom, as a kid, and you know, I think these experts are right. (Millennials probably don’t have a clue about what Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom is.) Rather than explain here, I’ll let them turn to Google. I hope what I’m about to talk about doesn’t create too much controversary; however, I feel strongly what’s coming must be said.
History is replete with examples where women have taken leadership roles for the benefit of family, community and beyond. I participate in several Christian groups. I won’t name them here, because I really don’t wish to offend anyone. One thing I often observe in these groups is the passionate discourse about men being the leaders God intended for them to be. I make no argument against that position; however, I do notice something that is usually absent from these discussions: The reality that women have always filled in where too often many men haven’t been there to tread. Where would the American Civil Rights Movement have been, if it were not for women? They were the “hidden figures” who labored behind the scenes, providing the much-needed infrastructure that icons like Martin Luther King, Jr. needed. Yes, we in the African- American community have created our hidden figures, too.
Due to wars, crime, imprisonment, and other political and social dynamics, women have always been thrown into the position of leadership. During World War II, the image of Rosie the Riveter stepping up to work in factories, because men were shipped off to war, painted a stark picture of women assuming a role society never intended. When I was young, I remember women acting with predominance to ensure that the church I attended continued to function in its role of serving God and community. There are women today who step into the daunting shoes of leading their families when the father isn’t in the home for whatever reason. And I can say, from personal experience that many of them do a yeoman’s job of providing physical and emotional support for their children. I wrote a blog on July 5, 2018, the day after my mother died, titled “How did you do it”, where I talked about the leadership role she played in raising my sibling and me: https://oldblessed.com/2018/07/06/how-did-you-do-it/ .
Some of you reading this may be keenly aware of months set aside to recognize certain people and events. If you’re one of those people, you know that Women’s History Month is in March. With that bit of knowledge, I might say this piece is too late or too early; however, I believe it’s always timely. I’ll make a note to republish it in March 2020, and probably each year afterwards.
Women have always willingly stepped forward to assume the position of “Lioness” when necessary, unnaturally though some might think, but without complaint or hesitation. Credit is always due.
I’m old and blessed…hope you will be too.