Golda Meir – Raised in the United States – Became Prime Minister of Israel and Changed the World


Golda Mabovitch (her birth name) was born on May 3, 1898, in Kiev, Russian Empire, present-day Ukraine. Meir wrote in her autobiography that her earliest memories were of her father boarding up the front door in response to rumors of an imminent pogrom. She had two sisters, Golda Meir 3Sheyna and Tzipke, as well as five other siblings who died in childhood. She was especially close to Sheyna.

She immigrated to the U.S. in 1906, with her mother and sisters.

Watch the Store

Golda’s mother  ran a grocery store on Milwaukee’s north side, where by age eight Golda had been put in charge of watching the store when her mother went to the market for supplies. Golda attended the Fourth Street Grade School (now Golda Meir School) from 1906 to 1912. A leader early on, she organized a fund raiser to pay for her classmates’ textbooks.

After forming the American Young Sisters Society, she rented a hall and scheduled a public meeting for the event. She went on to graduate as valedictorian of her class, despite not knowing English at the beginning of her schooling.

At 14, she studied at North Division High School and worked part-time. Her mother wanted her to leave school and marry, but she rebelled. She bought a train ticket to Denver, Colorado, and went to live with her married sister, Sheyna Korngold.

The Korngolds held intellectual evenings at their home, where Meir was exposed to debates on Zionism, literature, women’s suffrage, trade unionism, and more. In her autobiography, she wrote: “To the extent that my own future convictions were shaped and given form […] those talk-filled nights in Denver played a considerable role.”

In Denver, she also met Morris Meyerson (December 17, 1893 – May 25, 1951), a sign painter, whom she later married on December 24, 1917.

Zionism and Husband

While at the Folks Schule, she came more closely into contact with the ideals of Labor Zionism. In 1913 she had begun dating Morris Meyerson. She was a committed Labor Zionist and he was a dedicated socialist. Together, they left their jobs to join a kibbutz in Palestine in 1921.


In the British Mandate of Palestine, Meir and her husband joined a kibbutz. Her duties included picking almonds, planting trees, working in the chicken coops, and running the kitchen. Recognizing her leadership abilities, the kibbutz chose her as its representative to the Histadrut, the General Federation of Labor.Golda Meir 2 - Copy

In 1924, Meir and her husband left the kibbutz and resided briefly in Tel Aviv before settling in Jerusalem. There they had two children, their son Menachem (born 1924) and their daughter Sarah (born 1926).

In 1928, Meir was elected secretary of Moetzet HaPoalot (Working Women’s Council), which required her to spend two years (1932–34) as an emissary in the United States. The children went with her, but her husband stayed in Jerusalem.

Many Ministries

Golda was each of the following at one time or another in her political career:

∙    Minister of Labor
∙    Minister of Foreign Affairs
∙    Minister of Internal Affairs
∙    4th Prime Minister of Israel

Death and Burial

On December 8, 1978, Meir died of lymphatic cancer in Jerusalem at the age of 80. Four days later, on December 12, Meir was buried on Mount Herzl in Jerusalem.

Aftermath of the Munich Olympics

In the wake of the Munich massacre at the 1972 Summer Olympics, Meir appealed to the world to “save our citizens and condemn the unspeakable criminal acts committed”. Outraged at the perceived lack of global action, she ordered the Mossad to hunt down and assassinate suspected leaders and operatives of Black September and PFLP, some of which attack the Israeli Olympians.Golda Meir 1 - Copy

How She Change the World Single-handedly?

She did it with the force of her will and perseverance. She was one of the first female prime ministers in the world. She therefore led by example. She held her convictions even in the face of much (one might say “brutal”) opposition.

Now, what are you doing to change your world? You have will and you have perseverance, or you can surely develop them. Those two are all you need to get started. So …, get to it.

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99th Mayor of New York City – Fiorello La Guardia – Changed the World

Born With a Name Unfamiliar to Most

Fiorello La GuardiaFiorello Henry LaGuardia was born Fiorello Enrico La Guardia) on December 11, 1882. He died September 20, 1947. He was the 99th Mayor of New York City for three terms from 1934 to 1945 as a Republican. Previously he had been elected to Congress in 1916 and 1918, and again from 1922 through 1930.

Irascible, energetic, and charismatic, he craved publicity and is acclaimed as one of the three or four greatest mayors in American history. Only five feet tall, he was called “the Little Flower” (Fiorello is Italian for “little flower”).

LaGuardia, a Republican who appealed across party lines, was very popular in New York during the 1930s. As a New Dealer, he supported President Franklin D. Roosevelt, a Democrat, and in turn Roosevelt heavily funded the city and cut off patronage from LaGuardia’s foes. La Guardia (variously spelled LaGuardi and La Guardia) revitalized New York City and restored public faith in City Hall.

He unified the transit system, directed the building of low-cost public housing, public playgrounds, and parks, constructed airports, reorganized the police force, defeated the powerful Tammany Hall political machine, and reestablished merit employment in place of patronage jobs.

So Much Power

The intemperate mayor was rough on his staffers and left no doubt who was in charge. He lost his intuitive touch during the war years, when the federal money stopped flowing in, and never realized that he had created far more infrastructure than the city could afford.

He “represented a dangerous style of personal rule hitched to a transcendent purpose”, according to Thomas Kessner, LaGuardia’s biographer, adding that today, “people would be afraid of allowing anybody to take that kind of power.”

Stole a Loaf of Bread

According to Try and Stop Me by Bennett Cerf, LaGuardia often officiated in municipal court. He handled routine misdemeanor cases, including, as Cerf wrote, a woman who had stolen a loaf of bread for her starving family.

LaGuardia insisted on levying the fine of ten dollars. Then he said “I’m fining everyone in this courtroom fifty cents for living in a city where a person has to steal bread in order to eat!” He passed a hat and gave the fines to the defendant, who left the court with $47.50.Fiorello La Guardia 2

A Series of Facts

LaGuardia was the director general for the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration (UNRRA) in 1946.

A man of short stature, LaGuardia’s height is sometimes given as 5 feet 0 inches. According to an article in the New York Times, however, his actual height was 5 feet 2 inches.

He became a member of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia music fraternity.

He died of pancreatic cancer in his home at 5020 Goodridge Avenue, in the Riverdale section of the Bronx at the age of 64 and is interred at Woodlawn Cemetery in the Bronx.

Historians have recognized La Guardia as among the best mayors in New York City history and perhaps among the greatest in modern U.S. history.

He Made Mistakes

While FDR funneled money into city in return for LaGuardia’s support, LaGuardia built up a fabulous infrastructure. When WW II came along, unemployment was ended within the city because uniforms were made by the garment industry and ships were produced at the shipyard.

But the federal money for the city dried up. LaGuardia and those who were mayor after him, realized there was not enough money to support the infrastructure any longer. He had to struggle to make the city’s ends meet.

Nevertheless, he changed the world by the force of his personal charisma and drive.

The United States Postal Service honored him with a 14¢ postage stamp in 1972. In 1940, La Guardia received The Hundred Year Association of New York’s Gold Medal Award “in recognition of outstanding contributions to the City of New York.”

So What Are You Doing To Change Your City?

Once again, you do not have to be the flamboyant mayor of a major US city to make a difference. You do need to do something. You are hard wired for compassion, for example.

How are you using that wiring? Been compassionate lately? Fiorello LaGuardia did marvelous things for the people of New York City – he was perhaps their greatest mayor. Could you be a better citizen in your city or town or area? Yes, you can. Get to it.

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With Lines and Angles – Euclid – Changed the World – One Person


The math subject that some folks just love to hate, was “created” by Euclid. He lived somewhere around 300 B.C.E., and was also know of as Euclid of Alexandria. He was a Greek mathematician, often referred to as the “Father of Geometry”. Euclid

He was active in Alexandria during the reign of Ptolemy I (323–283 B.C.E.). His Elements is one of the most influential works in the history of mathematics, serving as the main textbook for teaching mathematics (especially geometry) from the time of its publication until the late 19th or early 20th century.

In the Elements, Euclid deduced the principles of what is now called Euclidean geometry from a small set of axioms. Euclid also wrote works on perspective, conic sections, spherical geometry, number theory and rigor.

King Tries To Find A Short Cut To Understanding Geometry

Little is known about Euclid’s life, as there are only a handful of references to him. The date and place of Euclid’s birth and the date and circumstances of his death are unknown, and only roughly estimated in proximity to contemporary figures mentioned in references.

The few historical references to Euclid were written centuries after he lived, by Proclus and Pappus of Alexandria. Proclus introduces Euclid only briefly in his fifth-century Commentary on the Elements, as the author of Elements, that he was mentioned by Archimedes, and that when King Ptolemy asked if there was a shorter path to learning geometry than Euclid’s Elements, Euclid replied, “There is no royal road to geometry.”

Although the purported citation of Euclid by Archimedes has been judged to be an interpolation by later editors of his works, it is still believed that Euclid wrote his works before those of Archimedes.

In addition, the “royal road” anecdote is questionable since it is similar to a story told about Menaechmus and Alexander the Great.

In the only other key reference to Euclid, Pappus briefly mentioned in the fourth century that Apollonius “spent a very long time with the pupils of Euclid at Alexandria, and it was thus that he acquired such a scientific habit of thought.”

Euclidean and Non-Euclidean Geometry

Although many of the results in Elements originated with earlier mathematicians, one of Euclid’s accomplishments was to present them in a single, logically coherent framework, making it easy to use and easy to reference, including a system of rigorous mathematical proofs that remains the basis of mathematics 23 centuries later.

There is no mention of Euclid in the earliest remaining copies of the Elements, and most of the copies say they are “from the edition of Theon” or the “lectures of Theon”, while the text considered to be primary, held by the Vatican, mentions no author. The only reference that historians rely on of Euclid having written the Elements was from Proclus, who briefly in his Commentary on the Elements ascribes Euclid as its author.

Euclid 2Although best known for its geometric results, the Elements also includes number theory. It considers the connection between perfect numbers and Mersenne primes, the infinitude of prime numbers, Euclid’s lemma on factorization (which leads to the fundamental theorem of arithmetic on uniqueness of prime factorizations), and the Euclidean algorithm for finding the greatest common divisor of two numbers.

The geometrical system described in the Elements was long known simply as geometry, and was considered to be the only geometry possible. Today, however, that system is often referred to as Euclidean geometry to distinguish it from other so-called non-Euclidean geometries that mathematicians discovered in the 19th century.

Are You Good At Math?

Never mind, really. Whether or not you are good at math is not the point. The point is – what are you doing to make your mark upon your time here on earth? You don’t need to write a math text book that lasts for centuries.

But you need to do something wherein you feel as if you have made a significant contribution. Get to it.

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Emmeline Pankhurst – For Women’s Votes – Changed The World

Emmeline Pankhurst

Emmeline Pankhurst

Start With Her Death

News of Emmeline Pankhurst’s death was announced around the U.K., and extensively in North America. Her funeral service on June 18, 1928, was filled with her former WSPU colleagues and those who had worked beside her in various capacities.

The Daily Mail described the procession as “like a dead general in the midst of a mourning army.” Women wore WSPU sashes and ribbons, and the organization’s flag was carried alongside the Union Flag. Christabel and Sylvia (two of her daughters) appeared together at the service, the latter with her child. Adela (another daughter) did not attend. Press coverage around the world recognized her tireless work on behalf of women’s right to vote – even if they didn’t agree on the value of her contributions.

The New York Herald Tribune called her “the most remarkable political and social agitator of the early part of the twentieth century and the supreme protagonist of the campaign for the electoral enfranchisement of women.”

One of the Most Important People of the 20th Century

Emmeline Pankhurst (born Goulden; July 15, 1858) was a British political activist and leader of the British suffragette movement who helped women win the right to vote. In 1999 Time named Pankhurst as one of the 100 Most Important People of the 20th Century, stating: “she shaped an idea of women for our time; she shook society into a new pattern from which there could be no going back.”

She was widely criticized for her militant tactics, and historians disagree about their effectiveness, but her work is recognized as a crucial element in achieving women’s suffrage in Britain.

Founded the Women’s Social and Political Union

In 1898, Pankhurst founded the Women’s Social and Political Union (WSPU), an all-women suffrage advocacy organization dedicated to “deeds, not words.”

The group placed itself separately from – and often in opposition to – political parties. The group quickly became infamous when its members smashed windows and assaulted police officers. Pankhurst, her daughters, and other WSPU activists were sentenced to repeated prison sentences, where they staged hunger strikes to secure better conditions.

As Pankhurst’s oldest daughter Christabel took the helm of the WSPU, antagonism between the group and the government grew. Eventually arson became a common tactic among WSPU members, and more moderate organizations spoke out against the Pankhurst family. In 1913 several prominent individuals left the WSPU, among them Pankhurst’s daughters Adela and Sylvia. The family rift was never healed.

First World War

With the advent of the First World War, Emmeline and Christabel called an immediate halt to militant suffrage activism in support of the British government’s stand against the “German Peril.”

They urged women to aid industrial production and encouraged young men to fight. In 1918 the Representation of the People Act granted votes to women over the age of 30. Pankhurst transformed the WSPU machinery into the Women’s Party, which was dedicated to promoting women’s equality in public life.

In her later years she became concerned with what she perceived as the menace posed by Bolshevism and – unhappy with the political alternatives – joined the Conservative Party.

Just two year’s after her death in1928 she was commemorated with a statue in London’s Victoria Tower Gardens, quite an extraodinarily short time for such to happen.

Education as a Militant

In December 1894 she was elected to the local position of Poor Law Guardian. She was appalled by the conditions she witnessed first-hand in the Manchester workhouse:

“The first time I went into the place I was horrified to see little girls seven and eight years old on their knees scrubbing the cold stones of the long corridors … bronchitis was epidemic among them most of the time … I found that there were pregnant women in that workhouse, scrubbing floors, doing the hardest kind of work, almost until their babies came into the world … Of course the babies are very badly protected … These poor, unprotected mothers and their babies I am sure were potent factors in my education as a militant”

Pankhurst immediately began to change these conditions, and established herself as a successful voice of reform on the Board of Guardians. Her chief opponent was a passionate man named Mainwaring, known for his rudeness. Recognizing that his loud anger was hurting his chances of persuading those aligned with Pankhurst, he kept a note nearby during meetings: “Keep your temper!”

Time to Change Tactics

By 1903 Pankhurst believed that years of moderate speeches and promises about women’s suffrage from members of parliament had yielded no progress. Although suffrage bills in 1870, 1886, and 1897 had shown promise, each was defeated. She doubted that political parties, with their many agenda items, would ever make women’s suffrage a priority.

She even broke with the ILP when it refused to focus on Votes for Women. It was necessary to abandon the patient tactics of existing advocacy groups, she believed, in favor of more militant actions. On October10, 1903 Pankhurst and several colleagues founded the Women’s Social and Political Union (WSPU), an organization open only to women and focused on direct action to win the vote. “Deeds,” she wrote later, “not words, was to be our permanent motto.”


Pankhurst was arrested for the first time in February 1908, when she tried to enter Parliament to deliver a protest resolution to Prime Minister H. H. Asquith.



She was charged with obstruction and sentenced to six weeks in prison. She spoke out against the conditions of her confinement, including vermin, meager food, and the “civilized torture of solitary confinement and absolute silence” to which she and others were ordered.

Pankhurst saw imprisonment as a means to publicize the urgency of women’s suffrage; in June 1909 she struck a police officer twice in the face to ensure she would be arrested. Pankhurst was arrested seven times before women’s suffrage was approved. During her trial on October 21, 1908 she told the court: “We are here not because we are law-breakers; we are here in our efforts to become law-makers.”

Illness and Death

Emmeline Pankhurst’s campaign for Parliament was pre-empted by her ill health. The years of touring, lectures, imprisonment, and hunger strikes had taken their toll; fatigue and illness became a regular part of Pankhurst’s life.

As her health went downhill, Emmeline Pankhurst moved into a nursing home. She requested that she be treated by the doctor who attended to her during her hunger strikes. His use of the stomach pump had helped her feel better while in prison; her nurses were sure that the shock of such treatment would severely

Pankhurst in Prison Garb

Pankhurst in Prison Garb

wound her but her request was carried out. Before the procedure could be started, however, she fell into a critical condition from which none expected her to recover. On Thursday, June 14, 1928 Pankhurst died, at the age of 69.

Emmeline Pankhurst’s importance to the United Kingdom was demonstrated again in 1929, when a portrait of her was added to the National Portrait Gallery. The BBC dramatized her life in the 1974 mini-series Shoulder to Shoulder, with Welsh actress Siân Phillips in the role of Emmeline Pankhurst.

In 1987 one of her homes in Manchester was opened as the Pankhurst Centre, an all-women gathering space and museum. In 2002, Pankhurst was placed at number 27 in the BBC’s poll of the 100 Greatest Britons.

Of Course, Women’s Voting Rights Came To The U.K.

All over the Western hemisphere, women now have the right and privilege to vote. Through such persons as Emmeline Pankhurst this was achieved, though with great struggle and even blood shed. (Please note that I am not advocating violence.) The odds were often great. But what are the odds in your life? You need not so something so large as the

Emmeline Pankhurst

Emmeline Pankhurst

vote for women. But what are you doing to change your world for the better, whether you are female or male? You probably won’t face the odds Pankhurst face. So … get to it.

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