Despite generations of inclusion in our democracy, women have a lot of catching up to do as of today, the 95th anniversary of the date we were at long last given the right to vote. Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew had a golden opportunity to move things in the right direction for the 51% — by deciding finally to put an unsung female hero on our male-only paper currency. Unfortunately, he’s on the road to blowing it.
From the Huffington Post:
Excerpt: "Rios, who described it as a kind of "renaissance" that a woman will be on the $10 bill at all, said the goal of featuring a woman on currency wasn't to spark a debate about the merits of different Founding Fathers, or to pit one president against another to figure out who should be bumped. Instead, she said, the idea was to promote a conversation about notable women in American history and who deserves recognition." Read the whole story.
Is half a $10 enough? Here's what Amy Davidson of the New Yorker thinks:
Excerpt: "What would it mean to recognize Harriet Tubman with just five dollars? Maybe ask it another way: what would five dollars mean to Harriet Tubman? And what might twenty have meant instead?" Read the full story.
From The Atlantic: our money speaks volumes.
Excerpt: "As Americans select a portrait for the new ten, they are also choosing a model for twenty-first century political womanhood. By selecting a political activist, they would acknowledge the value of women in American politics. National recognition of women’s historical activism is important because a society that esteems women with political power may encourage more women to enter politics. If the new $10 bill recognizes one of the many women who made modern politics possible, it will inspire those who aim to continue to revolutionize American society." Read the whole article.
Where does U.S. money stand on the global gender equality scale? Check out this unscientific study.
Excerpt: "What is there in common between an Egyptian Pharaoh, a Swedish zoologist, a Bolivian lawyer, a Chilean war hero, a Nigerian bank manager, a tenth century Korean king and Mahatma Gandhi? The image of all of them is on a banknote. Oh, yes, and of course they all are (dead) men."
The post-Ben Bernanke slugfest. Yahoo News's summary:
Excerpt: "The Obama administration has a money problem.
More specifically, Treasury Secretary Jack Lew is under attack for announcing that the U.S. Treasury will change the $10 bill in order to add a woman’s portrait to the currency.
The scathing critiques, from former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke to the USA Today editorial board and leading historians, have come after Lew’s decision to demote Alexander Hamilton, the nation’s first Treasury secretary, from his prominent position on the face of the $10 bill." Read more here.
From former Fed chairman Ben Bernanke's personal blog, a cry that echoed from Wall Street to Washington:
Excerpt: "I must admit I was appalled to hear of Treasury Secretary Jack Lew's decision last week to demote Alexander Hamilton from his featured position on the ten dollar bill. My reaction has been widely shared..." Continue reading