My history of the women’s movement

August 1st, 2016 by Ken

It’s my contention that young women – those under 30 – have no love for Hillary Clinton and no desire to see her become president of the United States.  Her move to become the first woman president holds no fire for these young women because they have grown up with nothing but strong women in leadership positions.

Looking at Thurston County in the last 50 years we can point to dozens of women who have broken the glass ceiling in local politics.   Women like Karen Fraser, Sandra Romero, Cathy Wolfe, Diane Oberquell, Marj Yung, Holly Gadbaw, Mary Lux, Ann Burgman,  Earlyse Swift, Kay Boyd, Nancy Peterson, Jolene Unsoeld, Judy Wilson,  and many others who have held local political elective office.   Then we have our women governors, Dixy Lee Ray and  Christine Gregorie.   And our women United States Senators Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell.

What’s happened in Thurston County is echoed all across this country as tens of  thousands of women have held and are currently holding political office.  Hillary Clinton’s effort to become the first woman president is the result of more than 40 years of progress by the women’s movement and government efforts to advance women’s equality.

In 1972, Congress passed legislation called Title IX which forbid gender discrimination in all educational programs which receive federal funds.  That was the most significant legal action for women in the last 40 years.   It’s most obvious in the arena of sports.

Prior to the act, women had been accomplished athletes in individual sports such as swimming, tennis and gymnastics.  But Title IX forced schools to set up women athletic teams in baseball, basketball, soccer and  volleyball.   These are all team sports which require players to work together, to sacrifice for the good of the team, to learn how to be competitive leaders.    In other words, it was on the playing fields of this country’s high schools and colleges that our young women learned the skills necessary to succeed in the world.

Now women comprise 60 percent of ALL college students and in some areas – such as law and medicine – they make up nearly 65 percent.   Young women under 30, with college degrees, make as much or more than their male counterparts.  They see themselves as equal in the marketplace and capable of meeting any challenge.

They have seen women break the glass ceiling in business, in science, in sports, in entertainment, in government and in politics.  They have no doubt that a woman will become president of the United States.   They’re just not certain that Hillary Clinton is the one they want.

Posted in Government, History, Local Politics, The Real News

(comments are closed).