The rise of women in politics. Never poke the beehive are wise instructions. Yet, it does not appear that men in politics got the memo. Year after year both women rights and their bodies continued to be under attack. In 2017, the Trump administration removed protections previously covered under former President Obama’s administration, Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces Orders.
These protections in part “prevented secret and forced arbitration meetings from being used on sexual harassment victims at Federal Companies”. Women subject to these agreements were often “women and people of color”. On the heels of the #MeToo movement created by Tarana Burke, the nation bared witness to just how problematic and chronic sexual harassment is. Especially in the workplace.
The woman’s right to choose has been severely restricted in multiple states. According to the Guttmacher Institute, 43 states prohibit abortions, generally except when necessary to protect the woman’s life or health, after a specified point in pregnancy. Continued attacks on the Affordable Care Act will not bode well for women. Especially women of color where health disparities already exist.
Women have marched, rallied, and cried only to have their concerns fall on deaf ears. So, it should not come as a surprise regarding their increased participation in the political process. You have old, white stale, men making life-altering decisions for women.
Women are speaking up loud and clear. As a result of the 2018 midterm election cycle, 17 African-American women of Harris County – one of the largest counties in Houston, Texas was elected as judges. A record-setting 125 women will occupy the house and the Senate. Nine women were elected to the office of the governorship. Georgia Gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams hopes the recount will be in her favor. If so, she will be the first African-American woman elected to that office in America.
Consider these facts by the Center for American Women regarding 2018:
- 107 women serve in the U.S. Congress
- 23 women serve in the Senate
- 84 women in the House.
- 74 women occupy statewide elective executive posts.
- 1,875 or 25.4%, of the 7,383 state legislatures are women
- 379 women are mayors
Although these numbers are great, there are tough conversations that need to take place. Particularly amongst white women. as they continue in great numbers to support candidates that have agenda’s which oppose the health and wellbeing of women.
Great gains were made, but there is much room for improvement especially regarding the representation of black women in government. 2020 is just around the corner.