The world of politics is ever-changing. One of the primary movements seen in the past years is the involvement of women in politics, which has had a large impact on the political world. Political involvement is not exclusive to females that hold a place in office; it has reached women of all demographics.
Susan B. Anthony was a very influential person during the women’s suffrage movement and an advocate for women’s rights.
“In a true republic, men should have nothing more than their rights,” Anthony said. “And women? Nothing less.”
This was one of many speeches by Anthony, which helped pave the road to the 19th Amendment, giving women in the United States the right to vote.
According to a 2020 U.S. Census report, 68% of eligible women reported voting, compared to a 65% turnout for men. In the 2016 election, 63% of women and 59% of men reported voting.
One century ago, women were not allowed to vote, and the entire demographic was left out of political decision-making. I can’t help but wonder what women of the 1920s would think if they could see how far women have come. Once upon a time, the idea of women having a voice was just a dream, but due to perseverance and hard work, when women scream, they are heard.
The presence of women in leadership roles is a great asset because of their capability to provide different skills and imaginative perspectives. For example, a national survey by the Pew Research Center Social and Demographic Trends survey ranked 2,250 adult women better than or equal to men in seven of the eight primary leadership traits assessed throughout the survey.
UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka has been an advocate for diversity and inclusion, specifically when it comes to gender.
“No country prospers without the engagement of women,” Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka said. “We need women’s representation that reflects all women and girls in all their diversity and abilities and across all cultural, social, economic and political situations.”
Women are changing the face of politics in revolutionary ways. Since the beginning of U.S. politics, the presidential race has been a popularity contest between two white men.
Women in power are building a different world where everyone has a role and it is respected — they are fighting for equality, integrity and respect. This is because women have lived in deprivation of rights and dealt with the consequences. Women fight every day to ensure change and make sure deprivation of rights are no longer present in young girls’ lives, paving the way for the future female figures.
Shannon O’Connell, the director of programmes at Westminster Foundation for Democracy, has expressed concern on various occasions regarding the treatment of different genders in politics.
“Understanding the gendered nature of political leadership and decision-making is more important than ever as we collectively rebuild and hopefully move toward a more sustainable, resilient and inclusive future,” O’Connell said.
In the past decade, women have rebuilt the political world to begin the construction of the future. In 2020, the U.S. elected the first female vice president, shattering the gender barrier in the White House.
Other actions taking place in Congress are the presence of Reps. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Rashida Tlaib of Michigan and Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts, also known as “The Squad.” All four are democratic women of color looking to make systematic change.
Since taking office, Ocasio-Cortez has been busy creating major change, co-sponsoring the Green New Deal, advocating for the U.S. economy to combat climate change, Medicare for All and free public college.
Omar’s election made her the first Somali-American and the first naturalized citizen from Africa in Congress, bringing a more diverse background to encourage new ideas. Her victory spurred the House to end its 181-year ban on headwear, and Omar became the first woman to wear a hijab on the House floor.
In Congress, Pressley has been an advocate for survivors of sexual assault, arguing for better protections for victims and a staunch supporter of abortion rights. Pressley’s first amendment on the House floor called for lowering the voting age from 18 to 16, but it did not pass. Her ideas are centered around female reproductive rights and have created a new feminist perspective in politics.
Tlaib is the first Palestinian-American woman in Congress. She has proposed legislation to expand federal civil rights laws, marched against police brutality and decried the impact of corporate money on politics. She holds very strong ideas about the former president. Donald Trump, and after this led to controversy on Twitter after sharing her opinion, her popularity has risen.
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