The presidential race is in full swing and the first debate has occurred. I have to say this is certainly the strangest race in my memory, yet it is also a history making one. We have the first female presidential nominee from a major political party. Whether or not you like the person who has received this honor, the fact remains it is an historical achievement. And while I was personally rooting for Bernie, I can live with Hillary.
However, the person who was given the honor is not what bothers me. The fact this has happened in 2016 bothers me. Or rather, that it has taken until 2016.
When Sputnik beat us into space in 1957, the whole country was up in arms about it and we plunged head first into the space race. But did you know that as of 2016, more than fifty countries have beaten us when it comes to women leading their nations as Presidents or Prime Ministers. More than fifty! Sirimavo Bandaranaike in 1960 Sri Lanka, Indira Gandhi in 1966 India, Golda Meir in 1969 Israel, Margaret Thatcher in 1979 Great Britain, plus Germany, Norway, Finland, Namibia, Iceland, Mozambique, Ukraine, Jamaica, Argentina, Australia, Bangladesh, Poland, Canada – the list goes on and on from both the developed and developing nations of this world. Yet it took the United States, the supposed leader of the free world, until 2016 to finally have even a candidate for president. There are Third World nations who have proved themselves more enlightened, beating us to this accomplishment by decades!
The fact it has taken 240 years for our country to truly begin seeing the value of women as leaders should be considered a source of deep embarrassment. In the twenty-first century, isn’t it time to eradicate the last vestiges of narrow-mindedness in the way our society sees women?