I'm A Woman And It Matters To Me That Hillary Clinton Could Be President
When you're a girl growing up in America, once you get past the age of rainbows and unicorns, you start to hear a lot about the glass ceiling — you learn what it is, where it is, whether it exists at all and if you can break it.
Women are raised to recognize the glass ceiling as the real, figurative level women can't get past in the professional world.
And whether it's taught or just inferred, it's something every woman experiences. Does it exist? For some women, perhaps not… for others, definitely.
Can we break it? If Hillary can, we can.
While her announcement didn't exactly shock anyone — we knew it was coming all along, and we've been excited for a while — it feels like the beginning of the new “Game of Thrones” season: We don't know what to expect or who won't be around at the end of the season, but boy, are we excited to see it play out.
Hillary's run is going to be a little different this time, and it's got the feminist in me sitting on the edge of my seat.
In her 2008 run, we saw Hillary go up against two men: John Edwards, the Southern white guy who represented the status quo, and a guy called Barack Obama.
Obama was fighting for equality for one group; Hillary fighting for the equality of another.
When Edwards conceded first, we knew change was afoot, we just didn't know what kind. When Hillary came up short of the nomination, it was a bitter pill for many – but it could have been worse. Something was still moving forward, so it kept the progressives happy.
But ladies, now it's our turn, and there couldn't be a better time than now.
Hillary's poised to run basically uncontested from the Democratic side, a fact that might not actually help her out in the long run.
If she's not forced to withstand the attacks of like-minded opponents in the Democratic primaries, she might be less than prepared to move on to her true political adversaries, the Republicans.
At the moment, however, it looks like for the first time in American history, one of the two major parties will have a woman's name on the ballot in a presidential election.
This is awesome. And it's a big deal.
Feminism is at a really interesting point in its history. On the one hand, you see attacks on women's rights all over the country, enough to have liberals using the so-called Republican War on Women, particularly on reproductive rights, as a rallying cry.
Everyone has seen the stats about the pay gap, another thing Republican lawmakers have been unwilling to address.
On the other hand, though, women as a group are really stepping into their own.
Inspirational women in America, from Sheryl Sandberg to Mindy Kaling, are showing girls what they can do in all walks of life, and Angela Merkel is essentially running the European Union from her position as German Chancellor.
If it can happen in Germany, it can happen here. There is a long road ahead, but it's a very real possibility America will have its first female president at the end of it.
A country led by a woman means women will finally get what we've wanted: a front row seat to see the glass ceiling shattered.
We'll have a president who rises above critiques on her clothes and hair and is looked to for critiques on foreign policy, reproductive rights and the future of the American republic.
We'll have someone to stand up for us who actually has a uterus – and we deserve it.
Women are 50 percent of the population of America. We represent well over 50 percent of college students and 100 percent of the population capable of bearing children.
If you're looking to find the future of America, take a close look: Women are it. And yet of the 44 American presidents, exactly zero of them have been women.
Hillary will be up against a lot in the next year and a half. Her ideas, merits and mistakes will be torn apart on the biggest political stage in the world.
But as she and her campaign say, they're not afraid to lose – they just want to fight for the American people, especially the ones who are underrepresented.
Just by virtue of being female, Hillary is already doing that.
Just by being up there on that stage, She's paving the way for the women who will eventually follow her.
She'll take a few of the misogynistic jabs her opponents won't realize they're making before they've learned how not to be offensive, and we thank her in advance for that.
Barack Obama ran on the slogan “Yes We Can!” and so we did. In retrospect, Obama's been a huge inspiration for people across the globe.
Now, Hillary will use a different slogan, but the sentiment is still there: If Hillary can, we can. If Hillary can, maybe the glass ceiling doesn't exist for me either.
Citations: Hillary Clinton launches second presidential bid (CNN), Getting Started (Hillary for America), Edwards concedes looks forward to Super Tuesday (Political Ticker), GOP War on Women category (The Huffington Post), Equal pay fact sheet beyond the gender gap of 77 cents for every dollar (The Guardian), Sheryl Sandbergs Take On Leaning In Beyonce And Bringing College Women Together (Elite Daily), Angela Merkel shows Cameron how to play politics on the world stage (The Guardian), 7 Hillary Clinton Quotes That Are Body Positive Feminist And The Antidote To Appearance Trolls (Bustle), Womens college enrollment gains leave men behind (Pew Research Center)
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