Editor’s note: The following is a column from the editorial staff.
When Barack Obama was elected President of the United States in 2008, there is no doubt it was a celebratory moment for African Americans and many people of color.
Why? Because after nearly two and a half centuries of only white men occupying the West Wing, it’s possible that they had started to feel as if they had little to no voice amidst the leadership of our country.
“People are only voting for Obama because he’s black,” was an often-shared sentiment.
At the time, I was 14 and listened to whatever voice was screaming at me via cable news on my parents’ television. I agreed that it was a ridiculous reason to vote for someone.
Now, my rebuttal to the argument is, “So what?”
Hillary Clinton is well on her way to becoming the first female president of the United States.
Should the fact that she is a woman not be taken into consideration by American women who have never before had a president who shared with them a key part of their identity: their gender?
I’m not saying that the main qualities of a candidate taken into account by voters should be his or her race or gender. Their positions on the issues, level of trustworthiness, experience and abilities should be among the many things considered when casting a vote.
Representation is important. I want someone in The White House who is going to think of me and other women like me when making decisions. I want his or her positions on the issues to be the result of thought, compassion and care toward Americans of all groups.
Former Secretary of State, Senator of New York and First Lady, Secretary Clinton has the experience, knowledge and skill to run this country.
Whether debating fellow democrats or republicans, few candidates have the knowledge she has of foreign policy and how things are done in American government.
Secretary Clinton cares about the middle class and wants to strengthen it without raising taxes.
She wants to eliminate campus sexual assault, which has become a serious problem in our country.
She seeks to improve the flawed Affordable Care Act set up by President Obama and stands by her belief that all Americans are entitled to affordable health care.
She wants to improve upon the current gun regulations we have in action, and to keep guns out of the hands of the criminally charged, domestic abusers and the severely mentally ill.
As a woman, it might be nice to have a president who knows what it’s like not to receive the same wages as her male counterparts, or to be asked how she will balance parenthood with her career when the same question is not extended to her male peers.
Although Secretary Clinton is economically far from the average American woman, the female experience is something that stretches across all classes, ages and professions.
I am voting for Hillary Clinton, not because she is a woman, but because I am a woman.