by Ken Feltman
My friend Ann Stone has written of Senator Ted Stevens and his help with the statue given to Congress by suffragists to commemorate the passage of the 19th Amendment. The statue had been stored in the Capitol Building Crypt but Stevens helped Ann and others get it raised to the Rotunda in 1997.
I once related to Stevens a tale told by my maternal grandmother. She marched for womens’ suffrage and once was taken off to jail. She did not mind being jailed. She minded that she could not be released except into her husband’s custody.
My grandfather minded, too, that his wife had been subjected to that one last indignity. He marched with her the next time, challenging the police to arrest them both. Apparently, he shouted, “What will you do? Will you release us into our daughters’ custody?”
Stevens did not laugh. He shook his head when I told him and said there were more battles to fight and more good reasons to fight them.
From Title IX to many other issues of importance to women, Stevens was there at the critical point. In being there for women, he was there for fathers of daughters, husbands, sons, all of us.