Who Said That Politics Isn’t a Place for Women?

Representation of women is growing… but we still have a long way to go

What if we were to ask you, what’s the primary thought that comes in your head when you think about a politician? Let us guess, a white, old, rich man. Right?! WRONG! We’re here to tell you that there are strong women in politics and it’s essential to have them in evidence for all the good work they have been doing in the last few years. 

Unfortunately, women are underrepresented worldwide. 119 countries have never had a woman as their representative. In national parliaments, only 25% are women. This small percentage is, however, an improvement from 11% since 1995. We’re about to introduce you to some of the strong female voices in politics that will inspire and prove to you that politics isn’t only for men! 

Angela Merkel

The first name that comes to mind, no doubt, is Angela Merkel. The German chancellor is a symbol of stability. She’s led the country for 15 years, which makes many people ask how will Germany be after she leaves. Merkel adopts many liberal ideas even if these are against her conservative bloc, proving that she hears the public opinion. She’s extremely successful dealing with crises, the economy in Germany being a reference. If the euro fails, Europe fails and it demonstrates her commitment, not only with the country but with the European continent.

In 2011, right after the Fukushima disaster, Merkel shut all the 17 German nuclear reactors. In 2015 the minimum wage became €8,50 euros/hour seeking a decrease of social injustice, and even with some criticism in 2015 when the borders were open for the refugees, Merkel’s party was always leading the polls. In Europe, it isn’t just Germany that has women in power but other countries such as Slovakia and Norway. In the north of Europe 6 of 8 countries are led by women and they have been doing incredible work.

Jacinta Ardern

In New Zealand, Jacinta Ardern is the third female Prime Minister. Elected in 2017, she has seen through three though years, batteling terrorism, a global pandemic, and a volcano eruption. Despite the hardship, the 2020 polls proved that she’s still the kiwi’s favorite. The prime minister is admirable for her empathy and at the same time strong decisions. As she says, being empathetic requires strength. After a massive gun attack in 2019, the Prime Minister announced the end of selling semi-automatic weapons and assault rifles. In December of the same year, a volcano erupted causing the death of 17 people and once more, Ardern led the country in grieving. Some of her other achievements are to reduce carbon emissions, aiming that New Zealand will be carbon neutral by 2050. Jacinta banned plastic bags, making an important move for the environment and deceleration of global warming, she’s building a historical change on climate questions.

Photo: Getty Images

Tsai-ing-wen

 In Taiwan, Tsai-ing-wen is the first female president. Now on her second term, it’s safe to say she didn’t have an easy first one, but sure was successful. She promoted green energy, offered two days off per week for all workers, the minimum wage saw a rise during her first term, the social services had a boost and she made Taiwan the first in Asia to have gay marriage legal. She also defends Taiwan’s sovereignty against China. 

Huda Beauty

Their Reactions to COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic was well handled for countries that have women as leaders. Germany, New Zealand, and Taiwan are some of these and had a quick response to the pandemic. In Germany, Merkel announced quickly that the coronavirus was a serious threat. The country built the biggest scheme of testing and tracking the virus in Europe. In New Zealand, instead of reducing the number of cases, Jacinta Ardern chose harder measures to decrease the number of cases to zero, and it worked. After some months, New Zealand was the first country in the world without any cases registered. In Taiwan, the president increased the production of masks and essential equipment, having a low number of COVID cases registered. 

These aren’t the only women in politics but the women who are underrepresented. The question is why? We live in a society where sexism is strong, which sometimes makes many women question themselves if they’re good enough for certain occupations and the answer is more than clear. YES! Women are just as capable as men to be in positions of power. These women are inspirations for those who want to see a change, and who want to make the change. It’s imperative for us to support the women who are in politics and those who want to get there. They’re our voice.

Women in power are a source of inspiration for the young girls who will grow up knowing that politics isn’t a place only for men.

Women in positions of power are crucial. The world population is around 50% women so it doesn’t make sense to have such a low number of representative females in politics. Each person has a different social perspective, so what’s important to a white, rich man, will hardly represent the interests of a woman. The lack of women in politics results in a lack of public policies for women. Having them in politics is having voice and ears dedicated for almost half of the world population! Women in power are a source of inspiration for the young girls who will grow up knowing that politics isn’t a place only for men.

Women in politics doesn’t mean only women leading a country, making politics is beyond it, and here goes some other names that are worth it to inspire you (and us!):

Damilola Odufuwa and Odunayo Eweniyi, dvocates of women rights from Nigeria.
Kamala Harris, Vice-President of United States
Stacey Abrams, minority leader in Georgia, social activist and American politician
Klementyna Suchanow, a social activist from Poland
Bilkis Dadi, a social activist from India
Monica Lennon, member of the Scottish parliament
Nicola Sturgeon, Prime Minister of Scotland
Nemonte Nenquimo, social activist from Ecuador and leader of Waorani nation
Marielle Franco, ex-politician and social activist in Brazil

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Tags: equality, femalevoices, politics, representation, women

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Victoria Antonieta
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Victoria Antonieta, internationalist, writer, traveler, big time TikTok dancer and sugar freak.
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