Mothers of Intention — Land of our Foremothers, by Self-Made Mom

Time for this week’s installment of Mothers of Intention, PunditMom’s weekly series that gives mothers who don’t usually write about politics a nice, comfy spot to get their election year mojo out there. This week my guest is Sara, better known as Self-Made Mom. She’s been an amazing supporter of mine and she’s got a wicked sense of humor. And, as you can see today, a great political eye, as well!

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I just finished watching the HBO Miniseries, “John Adams,” and as the series ended, I was struck not only with sadness (all the main characters died at the end, not a shock, I know) but also by the lives the women of the time led. I’m not surprised that during and after the Revolution women were clearly treated as second-class citizens. I was a History major in college; I have read up on such things. But my biggest takeaway after watching 12 hours of bloody battles, severed limbs and a vaccination procedure (yuck!), is that because the women of the time didn’t have the opportunity to become President of the United States I feel that is my obligation to support the candidate that can really change the course of our nation’s history.

I watched what it was like to even be Abigail Adams, a woman of “power,” at the time. I’m embarrassed to say that I knew little of her before I watched the show. But what I learned what that she was a smart, well-educated woman, loved by her husband, but with little say in the most important matters of her household. She was forced to let her husband go abroad for many years to be an ambassador in Europe. She had to let her eldest son go with him. She had to mind her family farm alone, watch over the rest of her kids. All while protecting her land from a warring country.

She may have been one of our nation’s most powerful and admired First Ladies, but her political clout and opinions were only known through her male counterparts. Her knowledge of foreign affairs and her ability to challenge the politics of the time were immense and known, but she could only play a passive role in affecting them. She took the role of First Lady seriously and with grace, and who knows, if it weren’t a man’s world, perhaps she’d have been elected president one day.

Fast forward 230 years, and you could say we have come a long way, but have we? We’ve had many educated and great First Ladies in our country, but are we really ready to see one go from sidekick to star? From the start of her presidential candidacy, Hillary Clinton’s role as a First Lady has been lauded by her but questioned by others. Many people think that being First Lady isn’t “good enough” to be able to be President of the United States. Many people see Ms. Clinton as an opportunistic senator with little experience outside of meaningless trips abroad.

But I see Ms. Clinton as something more inspirational.

We are one of the only democratic nations to have never elected a female president. The tight race this year is historically significant for so many reasons, and it represents our chance to fulfill all the unfulfilled dreams of our foremothers. To finally change what we have not achieved yet: to make a woman the Commander in Chief.

Ms. Clinton has her flaws; we all do. But for so many reasons, and yes, because she’s a woman, I’ll continue to support her through the final days of the campaign. Because I believe she’s the closest thing we have now to fulfilling something that Ms. Adams never had a chance to.

You can also find Sara at Moms on Issues and Chicago Moms Blog! Thanks so much your post this week, Sara!

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5 Responses to “Mothers of Intention — Land of our Foremothers, by Self-Made Mom”

  1. Selfmademom Says:

    Thanks for letting me have a voice. You rock!

  2. Amy Says:

    After my initial disappointment that John Adams was not going to be anything like my fav musical 1776, I was captivated by it. I think they should do a piece like this for all the remarkable leaders of our country and their spouses (aka POTUS).

    I’ve battled inwardly about why I haven’t been able to jump on the bandwagon and make her my first choice. I mean my daughter could grow up under the leadership of a WOMAN IN THE WHITE HOUSE. Why can’t I get on board? I don’t know. I really don’t know.

    But your piece has me thinking about it and that is always a good thing. When the time comes, and if she gets the nomination, Hillary will have my vote and I want to be proud to cast it. I need to arouse my own inner Abigail I guess.

    Great post, you should go poli more often.

  3. jessie Says:

    While I hope to one day have a woman in the Oval Office, and I will vote for Clinton if she is the candidate in November, I could not vote for her in the primary on Super Tuesday. Arguments about the historical importance of her run give me the warm fuzzies, but I could not go into the voting booth and cast my vote against Obama strictly based on shared gender.

    I hope that at some point in my lifetime, there is a female candidate on the ticket who is clearly the superior choice. Then the warm fuzzies I get will meet with the reality of wanting a candidate who reflects my priorities and who puts ideals above political expediency.

  4. Veronica Says:

    Great post!

    I’ve always been more fascinated by first ladies than the POTUS because I love reading how they did make policy decisions & many were their husband’s partner (heck, some were the pres for a few years!).

    And excellent points on why HRC’s experience as FL is important and shouldn’t be shrugged off.

  5. Anonymous Says:

    As someone else said, when PBS has a show every week on the Women’s Movement, we’ll know we count.
    Think of the last time you saw a show on Public TV (or anywhere else) on the Women’s Movement, crimes against women and girls as Human Rights issues, rape as a military weapon: think of it: Women’s Rights are Civil Rights, are Human Rights. We’re simply not there yet.
    I would post as something besides “anonymous”, but have been scared off by folks who vehemently disagree.


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