Peggielene Bartels, A.K.A. King Peggy, is currently the King of Otuam, Ghana. She was chosen to be one of only three female kings in Ghana, and when she discovered that male chauvinists wanted her to only be a figurehead, she said: “They were treating me like I am a second-class citizen because I am a woman. I said, ‘Hell no, you’re not going to do this to a woman!’” When she encountered corruption and the threat of embezzlement to the royal funds, she declared “I’m going to squeeze their balls so hard their eyes pop!”
King Peggy has maintained her work in Ghana’s embassy in Washington, D.C. while making education affordable in Otuam, installing borehead wells to produce clean drinking water, enforcing incarceration laws to deal with domestic violence, replenishing the royal coffers by taxing Otuam’s fishing industry to improve life in the village, and appointing three women to her council.
“Nobody should tell you, ‘You’re a woman, you can’t do it,’” she insists. “You can do it. Be ready to accept it when the calling comes.”
Quoted from the Spring/Summer 2012 issue of Ms. Magazine.