Women In The Boardroom And Our Opinion On The Ford vs. Kavanaugh Hearing
California Passes New Law – No More All-Male Boards!
By Daryn Dusansky
Last month, Governor Jerry Brown of California, passed a new law, SB 826, that requires publicly traded firms in the state of California to place at least one woman on their board of directors by the end of 2020 or face a penalty ($100,000 for the first offence, $300,000 for additional offenses). While common in European countries, California is the first to enact a law like this in the United States. One fourth of publicly held corporations with headquarters in California do not have women on their boards of directors. Governor Brown, in a letter attached to the bill, wrote that “as far back as 1886, and before women were even allowed to vote, corporations have been considered a person within the meaning of the Fourteenth Amendment” and given the “special privileges” afforded to corporations, it’s “high time corporate boards include the people who constitute more that half the ‘persons’ in America.”
Having female representation on boards is key for women’s advancement in corporate America. In order for boards to appoint more female CEOs, there has to be more female board members to vote for them says Anna Beninger, Sr. Director of research and corporate engagement partner at Catalyst (a non-profit studying women and work). There is also the argument that with more women on boards they will also more likely choose more diverse candidates to join the board as well. A Credit Suisse study found that businesses with women directors outperformed those without women in terms of return on equity and average growth over six years. Further, studies have found that companies with diverse boards of directors show increased revenues from innovation.
Critics of the bills believe that government should not mandate how a business is run. State Senator Joel Anderson (R), voted against the bill stating that he believes this bill “underestimates the power and strength of women.” Lucy Dunn, president and CEO of Orange County Business Council, believes that the bill is an insult to businesswomen. “Rather than celebrate the competitive advantage women bring to positions of leadership in a company, it relegates them to placeholder status.”
While the California law might have serious objections and legal issues, Governor Brown recognizes this but felt it had to be enacted now in light of “recent events in Washington, D.C. and beyond-making it crystal clear that many are not getting the message.”
Female Candidates Are Breaking Free of Traditional Campaign Rules
By Chloe Cornell
The rulebook has been thrown out the window. With a record amount of women running for government, there has been a revolutionary approach to how they present themselves to voters. While in the past, women who studies have shown are held to higher standards than men, were told to wear a suit, share their qualifications, and avoid showcasing their kids in fear that voters would question who would raise the kids if their mom was elected, today’s women candidates are bringing their kids on the campaign trail and featuring them in ad campaigns. The novel concept that women who are parents may be even more qualified to make decisions on behalf of other American families has taken hold. Mikie Sherrill, a 46 year old Democratic candidate running for Congress in New Jersey said to The New York Times, “You want somebody in Congress representing you that on some level you feel has the same values you do and has the same priorities you do. I hear a lot of, ‘You remind me so much of myself.’ I think that’s important.” Sherrill continued, “If I just said, ‘I’m a helicopter pilot and a federal prosecutor’ they might think I’ve served my country, I’m experienced. If I say, ‘And I’m a mom,’ they think I get it. ‘She’s a working mom. That’s tough.’”
Liuba Grechen Shirley, who is running for Congress on Long Island, not only features her young children prominently in her campaign, she also made history winning her challenge against the Federal Election Commission to allow her to use political donations to pay a babysitter while she campaigns.
Other women are revealing their authentic selves in other ways. Abby Finkenauer, a 29 year old Democratic candidate for Congress in Iowa, freely discusses her $20,000 student loan debt, and personal stories about her childhood spent hoping that her father could find work. Stacey Abrams, the Democratic nominee for governor of Georgia, is open about her credit card debt and her brother’s struggles with mental illness.
One of the candidates who has received a huge amount of attention, (including Girl Tribe) is 42 year old MJ Hegar who is a Purple Heart Air Force pilot running for Texas’ 31st Congressional District. Helgar did an ad campaign about her tattoos – which she had done to cover the scars she got on her arms and legs from combat. She told Bustle that at the beginning of her campaign, “I was getting the same advice that a lot of female candidates are getting: cut your hair, put on a suit, smile more. I don’t take that kind of direction. I’m not going to hide who I am, and the tattoo is a big part of who I am.”
Christine K. Jahnke, a longtime consultant to Democratic women told The New York Times,“These different women who are running, and the way they’re running, is going to change politics forever.”
The Fight for Justice Between Brett Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford – Opinion
By Julia French, Kate Kissell, Kiki Montgomery and Ana Wilmer
The Ford versus Kavanaugh case has bound women against the lofty entitlement which molds the world for men. Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, a 51-year-old professor in psychology, was patient, kind, and open for discussion during the Judiciary Committee hearings. So far, she has been confident and collected.
Brett Kavanaugh has bullied and downgraded the Democratic Senators, by filling their five minutes with nonsense details about sports and studying. One of his low points was when he essentially accusing Senator Amy Klobuchar of blackout drinking when she politely asked about evidence regarding his drinking habits. It was particularly cruel given that she had just declared her father’s struggle with alcoholism. Kavanaugh’s attitude confirmed stories that he easily becomes angry and violent, especially when drunk. It is unclear if he has a drinking problem or not, but his tears of pity for himself and his lack of concern for others have shown his true self.
Kavanaugh told lies to cover for what he was convicted of. He cruelly lied about the meaning of a sexual reference to a female classmate in his yearbook from high school. He lied about the meaning of “boofing” and “devil’s triangle” and “Beach Week Ralph Club.” He lied about the drinking age in Maryland, the state he grew up in. He lied about not watching Blasey Ford’s testimony when a Wall Street Journal piece featured him watching it. In the earlier stages of his testimony, he lied about receiving stolen Democratic documents to help him with George W. Bush’s judicial appointments. He also lied about being in on discussions of torture as staff secretary. We are not sure if he is a rapist but why lie so much if you’re not trying to hide something? Why lie so much about things that people can obviously prove you wrong on?
As a staunch Republican and conservative, Kavanaugh has a strong relationship with Trump, more than Hillary Clinton. He ranted about the “revenge of the Clintons,” and dismissed the Democratic senators as “you people.” Kavanaugh despises Hillary Clinton and even thinks that she had a part in her own father’s death. Kavanaugh sealed the approval and called for an investigation into the growing number of disturbing allegations against him. But the audience which was crucial, the President and the Republican Senators, seemed to be happy with what they have seen so far.
Since October 2016, women have found Trump unreliable and very offensive to the female population since the Access Hollywood tapes have come out about him being a sex abuser. For almost two years now, women have been coming out with their stories of Trump’s sexual cruelty, which lead to the #MeToo movement. Now women have been sharing stories of sexual abuse they had never told anyone. The more stories are shared, the more we see how prevalent this problem is in our country.
Kavanaugh wasn’t the only entitled male we had to put up with in this narrative. Apparently, when Lindsey Graham lost his friend John McCain to Glioblastoma, he also lost his conscience, his decency, and his self-control. Graham began to question Kavanaugh in some detail about his drinking, more specifically his alleged incident on July 1, 1982. Yes, Graham plowed over another woman, rescued Kavanaugh, and trashed his Democratic colleagues. He was even worse on Friday morning: “I’m a single white male from South Carolina, and I’m told I should just shut up, but I will not shut up,” he roared from his leather throne, as he called Ford’s story “garbage.”
What can we do to make a difference? Women successfully advocated for an FBI investigation by lobbying undecided Republican senator Jeff Flake with calls, letters and personal appeals. We can only hope that the pro-choice Republican senators Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski consider the information gathered from the FBI investigation. Ultimately we hope the November elections eat away at the Republican majority, but certainly that’s not comforting if we have an anti-abortion and conservative Supreme Court Justice who has bullied women on the bench. It would be unbelievable and disappointing that someone like Kavanaugh could get nominated and confirmed despite credible allegations of sexual cruelty.