In Memory of DuPage Green Activist Sally Howland
On May 19, 2016, a great friend and amazing activist Sally Howland of
Lisle, IL, passed away.
A stalwart, joyous advocate of the rights and dignity of the oppressed,
from the Palestinians to LGBTQ people, she represented what it means to
be an activist.
We first met in March, 1999, outside the United Methodist Church in
Downers Grove where Reverend Dell of Chicago was being tried for
performing a same-sex marriage ceremony. We didn’t know it then, but we
kept meeting at various functions as we found more and more common bonds.
Sally was a tireless spokesperson for LGBT rights, visiting state
senators and representatives many times before marriage equality arrived
We marched with PFLAG in Wheaton in the 4th of July parade, and every
year we got more cheers and fewer boos.
She worked diligently to make more religious institutions welcoming ones.
She was a leader in transgender issues long before it became a major
social justice issue, working with schools to address issues of bullying
and harassment that was being ignored by too many administrators.
She was a voice for the Palestinian people where they had no voice,
showing the suffering and indignity they faced daily.
She was a Green Party member just as it was being established, giving me
my first Green Party buttons.
She was active in NOW and the struggle to get the ERA passed, something
that still needs to be done.
We have come a long way because of people like Sally.
She led the way; we need to continue her work.
She was the best friend one could ever have.
“Everything in this world can be robbed and stolen, except one thing;
this one thing is the love that emanates from a human being towards a
solid commitment to a conviction or cause.” – Ghassan Kanafani