2008 Judith-ann Anderson - Dallas, Texas
Words of Women 2008 Essay of the Year
I believe the most significant thing that happened to women this year is that Hillary Clinton put herself in the running for President of the United States. This is significant because Hillary Rodham Clinton represents the rise to equality for women. Forever, Hillary will be the female archetype that propelled the Women’s Equality Movement to the next level.
As Hillary is our Twenty-first Century Pioneer, others have forged the way, and laid the ground work. We have so many sisters to thank who have gone before who never gave up hope and forever kept the torch for equality burning.
Let us never forget the Suffragettes who marched for the right to vote. We will forever be indebted to our pioneer sisters who fought for the right to own property. Before we were property owners, we were treated as property. We bore children and nursed the soldiers. We toiled the fields and wiped the sweat from our brow. We nurtured our families. We raised crops, tended the horses, and plowed the fields. We obeyed the ministers who said submit to your husbands; stay silent in the church. We taught our daughters to be strong and reach for the stars as they became educated and competitive in the workplace. As we moved into the workplace and worked right along side men for unequal pay, we still found ourselves the objects of oppression and ridicule. Yet, every moment, every day, every year we tirelessly moved through the muck and mire of inequality.
This year women walked out of the darkness into the light with Hillary leading the way when she bravely uttered the first words ever spoken by a women: “My name is Hillary Rodham Clinton and I’m running for President of the United States.” With that one bold statement, women’s equality became a complete reality—equal pay, equal respect, equal equality. Whether we believe n her politics, whether she wins or loses, she has created a place for women that symbolizes equal power.
We have had strong women archetypes since the beginning of time but the strength of men held more power. Thanks to the steady and faithful persistence of our sisters, woman power has reached a place of respect, honor, and the ever elusive “equality.”
The archetypes of women in power such as the Greek and Roman goddesses, Golda Meier, Madam Currie, Margaret Thatcher, Kay Bailey Hutchison, Oprah Winfrey, Nancy Pelosi, Geraldine Farraro, Beverly Sills, Barbara Walters, Ellen DeGeneres, and Ann Richards will no longer be the exception. Like a phoenix rising from the ashes of sexism, inequality, and oppression, Hillary gave wings to our flight.
The persistent spirit of woman power has bridged the gap of inequality with Hillary as our archetype. We valiantly accept the challenge to walk with Hillary, who has bravely and unabashedly gone where no woman has gone before. We are women, hear us roar. Roar on, Hillary Rodham Clinton, roar on.
Judith-ann Anderson, WiseWoman - Dallas, Texas