|Me at age 14, September 1973|
In 1973...I entered the rebellious stage of puberty as social unrest and protest movements swept the nation. I was half way through the eighth grade and my Madison county [Georgia] girlfriends were boy crazy and mad for the new blue mascara from Maybelline, but I was obsessed with the war in Vietnam and feared that my little brother and my best guy friends would be drafted into battle where they would be maimed or killed like my KIA cousin. We debated the ERA in school and wondered if its passage would subject girls to the draft. Would we be sent to 'Nam as well?
Wounded Knee II and the American Indian Movement informed my youthful poetry and I wrote my ninth grade term paper on the Yippee Revolution. I organized protests against excessive library fines (ten cents), the middle school lunch program, and even my local city hall where my best friend and I marched with homemade banners reading "Make Love, Not War, " and "Down with the Draft." I persuaded my buddies to join me in a letter-writing campaign to Senators Talmadge and Nunn concerning the problems encountered by migrant farm workers. I played my old Bob Dylan LPs until the grooves wore out. This young teen believed in the power of the people.