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Women Making Waves this Election Season

Women Making Waves in the Election

At a time like this, when so many people are so upset about so many things, it can be easy to focus on the bad. It’s healthy to have some negative emotions – fear, anger, disbelief – and it’s natural to want to express them. Protests have broken out across the country, including right here on UT’s campus.

Ever since I was little, I wanted to be the first woman President. I was lucky enough to have a family that supported that goal and never made me feel that it was impossible. As it turns out, politics is not my thing, so when I voted for Hillary Clinton, I teared up. It was so exciting to be casting my vote for someone who inspires young girls to change the world. When she lost, my heart broke for all of the little girls, just like me when I was young, who didn’t see the election of the first female President.

Despite her loss, Hillary Clinton is and always will be an amazing role model for girls. That’s simply a given. And just because it wasn’t Hillary in this election doesn’t mean that a female President won’t ever happen. It will. It has to. In her own words, “we have still not shattered that highest and hardest glass ceiling. But some day, someone will.” And until then, women don’t have to stop making waves and demanding equality.

And so, here are some other badass role models for young girls who did some pretty incredible things this election season.

Stephanie Murphy

The first Vietnamese-American Congresswoman. Backed by the Human Rights Campaign, she’s from Florida where she beat out the Republican incumbent of, get this, 23 years for the spot. Murphy started her campaign just last June in Florida’s 7th Congressional District, her parents were refugees, she was the first woman in her family to go to college, and she works to help women into college and supports women entrepreneurs.

 

Kate Brown

This inspiring woman is Oregon’s newly elected governor and is proudly and openly LGBT. Brown has been Oregon’s governor since 2015 when their previous governor stepped down, but this was her first election and she won! Brown is the first LGBT governor in the US, and, with this victory, can continue her great work.

Catherine Cortez Masto

Ever heard of a Latina senator? Now you have. Nevada elected her to Congress and she’s the very first ever Latina senator in the history of the country. She’s previously served as Nevada’s attorney general and focused her campaign this time around on immigration and the Supreme Court empty seat.

Ilhan Omar

She came to this country in 1995 as a refugee, and now she will be serving as a legislator – the first Somali-American Muslim woman to do so. She won her seat in the Minnesota House with over 80% of the votes and has previously served as the director of policy for Women Organizing Women Network. Of her win, Omar said “this was a victory for every person that's been told they have limits on their dreams."

 

Things are rough right now. But this shouldn’t be a roadblock and certainly shouldn’t cause any backwards motion in the fight for equality. No matter your gender, sexual orientation, country of birth, religion, or absolutely anything else, a person is a person is a person. We all deserve the same opportunities. So let these women inspire you to keep fighting the good fight. Get mobilized and get ready, because there’s a lot to be done. Until then, look out for one another, support one another, and love one another.

Alanna Viejo studies at University of Texas in Austin majoring in Nutritional Sciences, with an intent to go to Pharmacy school. At UT Austin, she is a member of the social organization, Texas Bluebonnets, working in the Public Relations/Advertising Committee as the Director. She is also a peer mentor for School of Human Ecology. Aside from the sciences, Alanna takes an interest in writing, reading, beauty, fashion & style. 
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