Terry Ventura ignites feminist spark on campus

by Gloria Steinem

Shucking her cowboy boots for a black miniskirt, the first lady of Minnesota never looked more stylish than she did Thursday at Lind Hall.
Terry Ventura advised nearly 100 University women how to be their own person — figuratively.
Ventura gave the hour-long keynote address in a convention sponsored by the women’s studies department called, “Snagging a man: Living off of his power, money and affluence.”
Ventura danced a forgotten Irish jig, while other Minnesotans of Irish dissent drank heavily on the streets.
She proved as prone to glib comments as her husband and the audience grimaced at some of her statements.
“The only thing anyone ever talks about is ‘Jesse, Jesse, Jesse,'” she complained. “Sometimes those damned reporters even call me Mrs. Body.”
She said she puts forth extra effort into her own personal interests, like horses and child rearing — a task made easier since the first family moved into the governor’s mansion and have servants to perform the housework.
In the style of her politician-husband, Ventura stumped for a state-funded $25,000 salary for the first lady. Both she and her husband have balked at the suggestion that her salary come out of his $250,000 annual payment.
Several audience members spoke out in favor of her proposal, but Libby Tarian, a political science senior, rebuked Ventura.
“If my taxes pay the first lady’s salary, then the governor should open up the position and take applications,” she said. “I think I’m qualified for the job.”
Campus police quickly removed Tarian from the premises and detained her until Ventura left campus.
Others in the audience were more receptive to Ventura’s comments.
“I used to think the governor’s wife was only interested in horses and tight clothes,” said Wilma Marimy, aGeneral College sophomore. “Now I know that she wants a state salary, too.”
Rosy R. Ivator, professor of women’s studies, said many of the former first ladies have chosen a pet issue to focus on during their husband’s term, so Mrs. Ventura represents a refreshing change.
The wives of Bill Gates, St. Paul Mayor Norm Coleman and the authors of “The Rules” also spoke at the symposium, which was put together in honor of Women’s Studies Month.
Other speeches in the day-long convention included: “If you’re not him, then who am I?”; “10 reasons why you should take his last name”; and “Giving away the bride, and other fun ways to be treated like property.”