Running a good race — running for respect

"Get the hell out of my race and give me those numbers." 1967 Boston Marathon

“Get the hell out of my race and give me those numbers.” 1967 Boston Marathon

Good Evening, God!

A good friend sent this photo from the 1967 Boston Marathon. It shows Katherine Switzer, who had entered as K.J. Switzer, being grabbed in a failed attempt to pull her off the course. She had been found to be (gasp!) a female. The marathon through its first 70 years had been an all-male event.

Women were considered too “delicate” to do anything as grueling as run 26.2 miles. Myself, I think women are a lot more durable than men. After all, it’s women who give birth to children — not an easy task!

I’m embarrassed, God, that I wasn’t even that aware of — let alone indignant — about sexism back them.  I was busy having children and being a mother. That is not an excuse. Indeed, who should be more aware of sexism than the mother of three daughters.

This issue was brought home to me a year ago when Kit and I met Jacqueline Hansen, who had sued the Olympic Committee, successfully, to allow women to run in the 1984 Olympics. I’m thankful for people like Katherine and Jacqueline who stepped forward to help all women. Of course “steps forward” are mostly met with outrage.

Society could do with a lot more female outrage, God. Women in India are now speaking out after the recent horrific gang rape and murder of a young woman. Sigh. It is a long slow road to mutual respect, God.

Father Richard Rohr wrote: “slavery, racism, sexism, classism, xenophobia, and homophobia have lasted authoritatively into our time [in part because of inaction] by people who claim to love Jesus!”

We need to come to You for help, God! All of us!

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Posted in a prayer for healing, acknowledging another's existence, Progress and our Change in Focus, respect, responding to God's Spirit, role models

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