Hillary the First Woman Running for President... Not So Fast
As of June 7th, 2016, Hillary Clinton is the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee. The CNN headline, "…will become the first woman in the 240-year history of the United States to lead the presidential ticket of a major political party." may be not so true.
She is not the first female nominee to run for president. There have been many women in the history of America that have ran for the White House, all with serious campaigns. Let's give credit where it is due. History shouldn't be re-written for one woman, and least of all Mrs. Clinton.
The first female candidate ever to run for Commander in Chief was Victoria Woodhull, under the banner of the Equal Rights Party. She was nominated at the parties' 1872 convention before women even had rights to vote. Woodhull's platform was edgy for her time too: regulation of monopolies, eight-hour workdays, direct taxation, an end to the death penalty and welfare for the poor.
A woman before her time, she was the first to do many things: she and her sister were the first female brokers on Wall Street under Woodhull, Claflin & Co., and she was also the first woman to address a congressional committee. She shook the foundations of this country's political system, with its Men only mentality and put the women's suffrage movement in the forefront.
Now one's counter argument could be that Woodhull's Equal Rights Party was not a major political party. In a time when women were told they have no say in our political system, Woodhull stood and made sure their voices were heard. People that did not agree with her tactics went as far to have Woodhull arrested days before the election on trumped up charges, and released a month later after being found not guilty, but not before the media trashed her character.
Other women although not clinching the nomination had very successful campaigns. In 1964 Margaret Chase Smith ran under the Republican Party, received primary votes in Illinois, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Texas, just to name a few. Her name was put in for nomination for the presidency at the Republican National Convention in 1964. After only receiving the support of 27 delegates, and losing to Senator Barry Goldwater, she removed herself, after the first ballot.
With just these two astounding and groundbreaking women, can one in good conscience say that Hillary is the candidate we are looking for, and I'll be bold here, the next woman president? Are we all going to vote just because she is a woman? Do we want the name Hillary Clinton echoed in the annals of history of America's first female president? In some ancient cultures, rulers were required to learn every law of their lands before they could rule. Does Hillary Clinton even understand the fundamentals of American Liberty?
In November, many feminists are going to the polls because it is exciting to cast a historic vote. One fact that escapes those women are making the same mistake that a majority of Americans made eight years ago when they cast a historic vote for "hope and change."
Can you imagine what the implications would be if Trump supporters said that they were voting for him because he was a man? What if back in 2012 Republicans proclaimed that they were voting for Mitt Romney because he was white? We need to unify, splitting Americans for any reason is not how to rebuild. When we consider the next president of the Untied States we should do so based on a candidate's character or lack thereof.