My friendship with Cassidy started during my first few weeks of college. We both had jobs at the SAGE Center (sexuality, anti-violence, gender, equality) and had many things in common. We soon became best friends and attached at the hip. I remember our first meeting like it was yesterday, we had a staff meeting and as I was walking up the sixteen steps to the SAGE
Center I could here the cackling of a laugh. When I rounded the corner there was a young girl with a tight blonde bun on the top of her head. She was wearing light wash jeans with one hole in each knee and a pair of beat up Converse sneakers. I took the only open seat in the small living room like office, which happened to be right next to her. When I sat down she perked up and basically shout-talked to me. “Hi! I’m Cassidy!” And that’s all it took for me to make my best college friend.
Cassidy worked in the E part of the SAGE Center. All of her events and
outreach consisted of bringing awareness to the Wage Gap or Reproductive Rights. She held many bake sales where men had to pay $1 for a cookie and women got it for 75 cents (for a bit easier change purpose). This might sound silly, but it was Cassidy’s passion to create equally opportunity and rights for women.
I called Cassidy Sunday night, mostly just to catch up and ask what time she was coming to pick me up next Sunday to hang out, but to ask her if she was interested in participating in an in-depth interview for my blog. She was really excited to help out, and I especially wanted to talk to her because she is the person that got you so involved in equal rights.
Cassidy grew up in a very small town in Northern Maine, where she admits she didn’t really experience sexism. In high school she was on the wrestling
team, where she does say that some boys did refuse to wrestle her because she was a girl. She tried not to have this keep her down since she was pretty badass at wrestling.
She says that she got really involved with her job at SAGE. This is where she, like me, really started to learn about all the things happening in the world and not just the gossip of a small town. She said that at first she became invested in feminism and equality because it was her job, but then she just wondered why she hadn’t always felt that these issues were important!
In our friend group Cassidy was always known as a die hard feminist. She would shut down hate like no ones business and would typically get into debates with other friends or complete strangers in the dining hall about oppression and sexism. This was just part of her charm and something that we all loved having her around for. She is the type of person that could just meet you and would stand up for you.
Today, Cassidy works as a Social Studies teacher in Southern New
Hampshire. Her middle school classes are filled with young women that, I bet, look up to her so highly. She says that her reasons for being a feminist change at times.
“At first I was one for my job, then I was one for me, now I am one for all of those who cannot be.”
Her female students are one of the groups of women she is a feminist for. She tells me over the phone that the things that these girls can say about themselves and others are awful. “I want the girls in my class to realize that they have the potential to achieve the same things in life as the boys in my class do.” She tries her best to make the history of Ancient Rome relatable to today by talking to her students and comparing history to modern day.
We went on to talk about her past and made some connects to feminism. “Mulan was always my favorite movie growing up. She is just such a badass that I always looked up to. And she saved all of China from the Huns as a woman! The men were only able to help when they dressed up like women.”
While we were on the phone Cassidy talked about the importance of Planned
Parenthood and how making birth control safe, accessible and affordable is so important.
Cassidy recalls her time at Plymouth State and the Women’s Studies courses she took here. Here she took Women in World Politics, were she learned about other countries and the rights that women have there. “Some countries have had several women presidents, countries that American’s view has second class. Why is America so scared to have one?”
In this class Cassidy learned a lot about Intersectional Feminism. This is what Cassidy is fighting for now.
Keep killing’ it best friend!