Tuesday, February 17, 2015
Forming a Government where the girls moved the boys: A projected look at a possibility in the ascendancy of Hillary Rodham Clinton or Elizabeth Warren to US Presidency?
Keywords or Terms: Hillary Rodham Clinton; Elizabeth Warren; Executive Suites; Females; Women Suffrage; US Senate; US House of Representatives; African-American Women; Asian American Women; Voting Power; Female Apathy; Madeleine Albright; Condoleezza Rice; Middle east; Foggy-Bottom; Nicolas Sarkozy; and 2016 Presidential Election
The urge to project a female President inspires females across the globe. So it is with the possibility of ascendancy of Hillary Clinton, Elizabeth Warren, or any other female that may be interested in becoming the President of this great nation. Females are not in short supply in the population; however, there is dearth of them in fortune 500 business executive suites; and, none of them has ever occupied White House oval office. Female governors have been admired; female National Security Advisors, Attorney Generals, Secretary of State, Secretary of Defense and a host other executive positions in government have been cherished; however, going for the golden crown or the highest office in the land, has always been the goal, if I am to affirm or model the women’s right convention in Seneca Fall, New York in 1848. Women's conception of their own power and efforts to nominate and vote into office one of theirs must not be dispelled in 2016.
The notion that Hillary Rodham Clinton, Elizabeth Warren or any other female will become the next President of the United States is a progressive one; ahead of the initial attempts of 1984 Democrat Geraldine Ferraro and 2008 Republican Sarah Palin run for the Office of the Vice President. Not since the ninetieth amendment to the constitution in 1920, affording women right to vote, has there been a more promising opportunity to actually have a woman run and win election into the White House oval office. There has been a lot of first break through at state and local government levels; but none as progressive and promising as having a female with the type of clout and admiration in Hillary Clinton or Elizabeth Warren to win the crown. In Hillary Clinton or Elizabeth Warren, women, especially the baby boomer generation, will have the choice to exercise their vote to elect one of theirs to win the big prize, coveted by men for over two centuries.
In many respect, women are tailor-made for the challenges of leading a nation, because of their past successes in various spheres of life, beginning with the first unit of human endeavor or organization, the family. Because of their multi-tasking abilities and refined bullheadedness in time of crisis, women are not short of energy and wherewithal to handle the stress and pressures of leadership. To scorn or prevent women to install their ninth-time most admired person in the oval office will be synonymous with attempting to favor an unbroken chain of male Presidency since the inception of the nation in 1776.
Yet, a closer look at the possibility – and at history – might suggest that women can end up being their own greatest enemy. Some women, huge religious conservatives, still believe that a woman’s place is at home. A couple will go as far as insinuating that their religion or God ordains or proclaims it likewise; and any ambition on the part of a woman, no matter how promising or expansionary, is fruitless and must be ignored or halted. This is sadly true if one considers prior voting patterns of the female population on the quest of females for national executive offices. Factoring out dearth of female candidacies for national executive offices, women have consistently failed to exercise their power at the ballot box to enthrone their own in comparison to their ratio of the population.
First, within the national executive structure, US Senate and US House of Representatives, the nation is dying to have more female participants. In 2014, the Center for American Women in Politics at Rutgers University documented One hundred females in US Congress; twenty of them in Senate and eighty, House of Representatives. Carol Mosely Braun (D-IL) (1993-1999) has been the only female African -American ever elected to serve in US Senate and Mazi Hirono (D-HI) (2012 to date), the only female Asian-American to be elected to serve in the same capacity. A minuscule forty-nine women of color have ever served in the US House of Representatives. This is partly because of several factors; however, a few progressives associate this low occupancy as a result of apprehension on the part of some female to seek the offices and partly because of the structure of the political parties and or, failure of female activism in recent memory and persistent female voter’s choice not to exercise their dominance relative to the voting population.
Second, within the bound of American Political System, females continue to see politics as much of a male sport. None can claim to know-it-all in politics; however, there must be conscious efforts to encourage women to seek higher national offices; and probably an incubator of some sort for women activists, seeking and working tirelessly to put women in higher national elected offices; including the three executive branches of government. The notion that political campaign hostilities is hardly appealing to females is somewhat of a cop-out. Given that political campaign hostilities, including mudslinging, could be brutal and have the potential of choking a new aspirant in a whirlwind of competition, there are still enough room for everyone to rise up to the soap box. Ignominious male utterances, where females are referred to as ribs from the chest of men, can be made impossible, if women let their voices be heard by actively participating as candidates and voters. Without continuous apprehension or apathy from some women towards seeking higher national political office(s), hardly will many men occupy the current slate of offices at the national level, because they can hardly amass the critical mass of votes to win elected offices with many women in a race.
Third, with male dominance in national political elections set to wither away with more female candidates, there are endless synergism in women power to enthrone more females in higher national or federal offices; and, with the brilliance of Hillary Clinton or Elizabeth Warren candidatures in 2016, who may doubt or deny the possibilities of women enthroning one of theirs into the oval office. The problem in the past has often been the wave of uncertainties encumbering women voting power that dissipate consensus towards a female candidature. Women tend to vote for male candidates for national offices, partly out of choice or tradition; sometimes, their support are directed in multiple directions, thus denying critical mass needed to put one of theirs ahead. How about concentrating your votes into one huge basket and letting one of yours carry the day?
The beginning of wisdom in modern-day politics is to recognize that women political power has meaning; and it is about time female voters become less gullible to responding to party loyalty just because of hitherto male dominant voices in national politics. A close to in-depth understanding of how males play the game will suffice, once you have a charismatic and admirable leader. One rarely meets elite educated lawyers with national level political experience as voters have in Hillary Clinton and or Elizabeth Warren in 2016. Self-hatred, self-disenfranchisement or parochialism must not triumph over commonsense, if women are going to have one of their own in the White House oval office. Most aspirants for the oval office are speaking to multiple constituents – across states, regions and within their groups. It is not difficult to become adept to tradition, or what are the historical pattern and experience; however, it takes determinations, guts and believing in yourself to make dreams come true. Remember what Bobby Kennedy said: There are those who look at things the way they are, and ask why... I dream of things that never were, and ask why not?
In Hillary Clinton’s candidacy, you see the fulfillment of a dream of generations of women. You see a candidate, who has been through the trenches in 2008, a woman who has once experienced the use of character assassinations in national elections by the opposing political party, a woman who once chastised the presidential incumbent of a spouse that what he hardly understands is that, you have to pound the opposition party’s attack machine and run against the press; a candidate who appreciates that a presidential campaign is a mirror reflection of a candidate’s aspirations and dreams; A politician that believes that a political campaign team that goes through a tough battle together must continually bond together, because their survival depends on staying together in the face of crisis; A candidate who thrives in somewhat chaotic presidential campaign and still maintain the intimacy of a one-on-one communication with her brilliant team members; A grandmother who knows how to harness the energies of past warriors of political street fights and never bets against the potential of an adversary to overcome initial failures or defeats at the state primary levels. This is a woman who understands that balancing the budget must never be done at the back of the vulnerable groups, children and the elderly; who knew firsthand what a backlash a former house speaker suffered when he attempted to cut the school lunch program to balance the 1995 budget; this is a lion of a woman who has roamed the den and ally when food and resources were scanty and survived the austerity not by clubbing down the down trodden, but by helping up humanity in dire times. To paraphrase Attorney- General Bobby Kennedy once again, fewer women will have the greatness to bend history itself; but each woman, working together to change a small portion of events; will spring forward the progress clock for women suffrage in a rather handsome and beautiful way in our national politics.
In deciding who to vote for, in deciding the course of 2016 election, all women need to look at the mirror and contemplate what is going on in America today, issues of immigration, wage stagnation, income inequality, possibility of a universal health coverage, same-sex marriage and fighting terrorism, and ask which candidate is best to gather together policy wonks and strategists to turn around the nation's fortunes for better, while recognizing the pains of the vulnerable, women, children and the elderly. Is it the Republicans or the Democrats?
What Hillary Clinton offers is experience working alongside brilliant men and women from all walks of life, race, gender ethnicity and national origins, to bring about change we can all relate to. Yes, Madeleine Albright and Condoleezza Rice broke the glass ceiling at US State Department, but Hillary Clinton made the foggy-bottom clearer with her speech to students in the Middle East during the dawn of Arab Spring. Would you rather vote for a politician respected by other world leaders with one, the French President, Nicolas Sarkozy, admonishing her as tough, smart and a good person, or vote for a brash New Jerseyan or the engineer of a settlement of national split vote that ushered in, his brother, a President that brought the nation to her financial knees and an unpaid-for-war in Iraq? The choice is yours. However, you may want to positively consider the girl, once in the state department, boys were mystically scared was driving the national debate on foreign policy!