Ladies in Politics

by Kathryn Jean Lopez

Whenever I hear — just did the other day on MSNBC — people talking about how Hillary Clinton needs to break the ultimate glass ceiling, how we need that first woman president to more fully liberate women in the U.S. and inspire girls, it just sounds so tired to me. And that’s because we’ve been there. If Western culture needed a trailblazer, if we needed to see a stateswoman hold her own (and help free the world of Soviet tyranny) we had one in Margaret Thatcher.

So many of the young leaders in Congress were raised watching Thatcher. For as many conservatives who love Reagan, there has always been a corresponding respect for Thatcher (and attraction to John Paul II). Even when some argued Sarah Palin might be an American Thatcher, it seemed somewhat secondary as a milestone. Once you’ve had a lioness, that history has happened. There will be more. But acknowledge, be grateful, build on it.

And don’t insist a leader be a woman because women are a victim class in need of liberation. We’re not! We need talented leaders, and, yes, women absolutely bring unique, needed gifts to the table. May the best leader, woman or man, take leading roles. And may we all contribute, in our roles, with our gifts. This Mars vs.Venus struggle has gone on too long in politics and our lives, and made for some distracting detours. 

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