Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Homework Assignment: Scholarly Writing

I am about to conclude my English studies on the American track and this right here is my very last paper - last essay - on the BA level. I made a huge mistake with it, but corrected it in this version. I came up with the idea a month before and I was very happy that I did manage to get what I wanted on paper. For the last paper that I had to write it was probably the most fun that I ever had! So, I hope you enjoy my view on the topic. To be completely honest, I don't care about this topic as much as it would seem :D But I loved arguing for it!
_ _ _ _ _ 

The USA Should Have a Female President

            The USA has been known to be at the front for innovation, both scientifically speaking and on a moral level. However, on a political level it has fallen behind as it seems that women’s fight for equality still has a long way to go. In order to achieve that equality, the author of this paper believes that it is necessary to put a woman in a more influential position within the US government, more precisely, to elect a woman as President. The following essay will argue why it is important for the United States to elect a woman as their next President. The reader should take note that the essay will not give preference to either Democrats or Republicans, as the author wishes to remain impartial.
            First, the reader should take into account that the term feminism is wildly misunderstood among the largest part of the US population. It is often believed to be a derogatory term in relation to men, while it simply means giving women the exact same treatment as men. According to the American Heritage Dictionary, it stands for “a doctrine or movement that advocates equal rights for women”(“feminism”). In other words, it is simply a synonym for equality, and not only for women, but for men who wish for this equality to prevail. To elect a woman President, perhaps some will believe that they are abusing such equality; however, others can be educated about the meaning of non-discrimination. The Second World War showed the United States what would happen if racism prevailed and what followed was a Civil Rights Movement that was successful in comparison to its earlier versions (Stevens). Perhaps it is time to force the population to realize that their lack of equality covers a larger percentage than just minorities.
            Second, “after stagnating in the mid-1990s, progress toward closing the earnings gap between men and women in America basically stopped in the last decade” (Swanson). The difference is about 20%, and according to the article above mentioned they are often discriminated for the time they take to stay at home after giving birth and the time they spend with the care of their families (Swanson). In another study conducted by The New York Times’ The Upshot, it clearly shows the difference in pay for women and men  in certain jobs: woman only make 67% of a men’s pay as physicians, 82% as lawyers or judges, 84% as postsecondary teachers or computer engineers and 96% as chemists. The only three areas listed by the article where they get the same pay are as dental hygienists, H.R. specialists or advertising salespeople (Miller). This means that the pay gap is not only a general problem, but it differentiates based on employment and the area in which a woman wishes to work.
This is a problem that has resurfaced several times during the Obama administration, but it has been swept under the rug. It is the firm belief of the author that a woman in the Oval Office would be able to designate the necessary importance to this problem and to make sure it is dealt with. Whether or not she is capable of achieving a change during her term in office is a completely different argument. Nonetheless, the problem should be addressed sooner than later.
And last, but not least, women in Congress are highly underrepresented. In 2013 only 17.9% of the Representatives were woman and exactly 20% of women were in the Senate (Catalyst.com). The numbers are a bit better on the state level, but it is hard to get an influential job on Capitol Hill. In 2007 Nancy Pelosi became the first woman elected as Speaker of the House of Representatives, and out of the sixty-eight Secretaries of State three Madeline Albright, Condoleezza Rice and Hilary Clinton, were women. In history no woman has ever surpassed the primaries as a presidential candidate, but there were two times when there were Vice-Presidential candidates. Once in 1984 on the Democratic ticket, when candidate Walter Mondale ran with Geraldine Ferraro as his Vice-President; the second time it was on the Republican ticket, when John McCain chose Sarah Palin as his running mate in 2008 (Murse). In an interview Cynthia Terrell, chair of FairVote’s “Representation 2020” project has said that “women won’t achieve fair representation for nearly 500 years” (Hill).
The President chooses their Vice-President as well as their cabinet and they can also appoint judges to the Supreme Court. If there was a woman in the Oval Office, perhaps the number of women in Congress would also increase, as one has already got elected to do the hardest job available out there. In the long run, a woman is more likely to concern themselves with all kinds of problems, not just the ones they get to fix in the run of their four year term to boost their chances of re-election.
The reader might argue that men in the US government have previously acted as male chauvinists, and the President is bound to make mistakes as they are human. Unfortunately, these mistakes can be judged based on the fact that it was a woman making them, and instead of learning from them, politics will come in and crash the person elected to office. It is without a doubt a problem that the same mistake made by a man will have fewer consequences than one made by a woman.
In conclusion, the author of this paper wished to shed some light on the fact that the fight for equality within the United States is still very far from being over. The main argument was that having a woman in a very influential power position within the US could be the first in many steps to achieve that equality. People could be educated on the meaning of feminism, the pay gap between men and women could be addressed with more success and maybe more women would be willing to seek jobs on Capitol Hill. The aim is to achieve proper representation and non-discrimination. The USA has always been a leader as far as freedom of religion, of speech and equality is concerned, showing that just like its European counterparts it is capable of voting without discrimination would boost its popularity on a political level once again.

Works Cited 

No comments:

Post a Comment