Put a couple hundred women bloggers in some conference rooms for ten hours and what do you get? Well, I suppose there could be many answers to that question, but when the get-together is three weeks before one of the most important elections of our time, the answer is this — an emerging force for change.
Tanya over at Not My Gal wrote about yesterday’s BlogHer DC conference, and one of the commenters got very snarky, saying (and I paraphrase), that women will never become a power in politics or business because we can’t get beyond talking and chatting, sharing and caring. Men will continue to be the dominant force because they act unilaterally instead of collaborating.
Hmmm. To that, I say — not so much.
There may be the tiniest grain of truth in that generalization, but the whole “decider” thing hasn’t worked out so well in the last eight years, so it’s time for these guys who like to take charge in the boardroom and the political arena to step aside.
One truth I learned pretty early on, especially when I entered the world of law as a young associate, is that there are times when we, as women, need to step up and take what we believe is ours. Whether by nature or by socialization, women tend to be “askers.” I discovered there were definitely times I needed to push that little voice of uncertainty to the back of my mind, and don the mental cloak of being in charge. For better or worse, we’re a society where image sometimes counts for more than substance. If we have substance AND image? SCORE!
So, if there was ever a time to stop asking and start taking control and power over our voices as a tool for change, it’s now.
I had the sense, especially during the keynote speech with Carol Jenkins of the Women’s Media Center, Lesley Stahl, Liz Mair of the RNC and Mary Ann Akers of the Washington Post, that things are being stirred up. Winds are blowing and moving things around and that always leads to change. We’re not at the level of a collective tsunami or a hurricane yet, but dust devils can swirl things around enough to get attention, and you never know what that can lead to.
There are plenty of times in nature when little breezes are destined to become gale force winds. We just have to know how to capture the powerful force and turn it into something positive. I have a feeling things are going to be quite different in the next four years. Think we should go for it?