Catherine McHaney

As Interviewed by Meris McHaney, March 15, 2011

Catherine McHaney: In Her Own Words

Everyone is equal as they say, but unfortunately we canít pursue that statement. I think that there are too many men out in the world making those very important decisions and not enough women having the opportunity to speak up or have a say in how this country is run.

I am very in favor of women having the opportunity to serve on boards and slots that they werenít chosen for earlier but just to say that we need a woman on the board or that we need a woman in that slot is not always good because in pushing for a woman that may not be qualified and you pick the most aggressive just because she wants to be here and then turns out to be not the right pick for that particular job then gives a bad wrap for women and then the next time they need to pick someone they say donít pick a woman because they now think that women are bad workers and are not smart. Happens probably, but not as much because a lot more qualified women to pick from and many more that want to serve.

Well, I am certainly aware that now pregnant women have the choice of continuing their job for a certain amount of months and are assured of their job back. Clearly that hasnít always been true and you can see the side of the employer because if it was a job that couldnít have large amounts of breaks then obviously you couldnít have that job. So if you were a young women that was married and wanted to have kids and a family it just didnít seem fair.

I strongly believe that people should be paid fairly. Itís their boss that gets to decide if they did a good job or not and how much they deserve to get paid. Some people think they did a good job and that they should get paid a lot when actually they did a horrible job and should barely get paid. This is what women thought so then they got the bad wrap.

There should be laws to protect women from being harassed but unfortunately there are going to be people who take advantage of it and there are many women who claim harassment that itís not really so which gives a bad rap to the women that are actually being harassed and speaking up then people are not going to take them seriously. Itís like the boy who cried wolf. If too many women do that, just to be rewarded financially, I tend to get upset.

The hospital board was an appointment by the commissionerís court and I happened to be the first woman to be appointed on that board because of the times, the early 80ís. It was just beginning where the woman across the country were high activists trying to get more rights for women such as Rosie Riveter.

I definitely remember seeing some posters of Rosie Riveter around town and I never felt like I was held back a lot by being a woman, but there have definitely been women that have been held back, and itís horrible because both men and women are smart and should be able to contribute to society. I believe Rosie Riveter was a hero to many, and still is even till today. I benefited greatly from those activists out there such as Rosie Riveter, and I probably wouldnít have done what I have done without those women that fought for our rights.

Well I hope that everyone has the ability to study and pursue in what they want. Thereís always going to be conflict and disagreement between all kinds of people in the world that are going to be impossible to solve. Itís easy to say one thing and write it down on a piece of paper and call it a law, but itís another thing to act on that law. You canít go inside of someone and change his or her opinion on something. There are always going to be people against blacks, Hispanics (etc.). Just like there are going to be people that donít believe women should be able to do the things their able to do today. I guess thatís why keep on fighting.