In 1968, a woman by the name of Shirley Chisholm became the first African-American female to serve in the U.S. Congress. And a few years later, Chisholm broke ground again when she ran for President. Fast forward to the 2012 election, and women made historic gains in the Senate – they now hold 20 seats. But is that enough to say we made true change and progress? This past week, four female war vets filed suit against the Defense Department because of the military’s policy barring women from ground combat. And who can forget the latest shocking attacks against UN Ambassador Susan Rice (pictured below). The vile criticism she has received is not only unwarranted, but it is clearly full of sexist and racist language. Looks like we still need to break a hell of a lot more cracks in that glass ceiling.
While trying to demonize Ambassador Rice, her critics have failed to recognize this leader’s tremendous accomplishments. Even back in high school, she was class president, valedictorian, and a great athlete. Rice went on to attend school at Stanford, where she graduated as a Truman Scholar and junior Phi Beta Kappa, and Ambassador Rice was also a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford.
Those early achievements and her stellar career afterward speak volumes as to what barriers she broke through both personally and professionally. Instead of painting an accurate picture of her, those criticizing her want to continually insult a Black woman serving in an esteemed position within the Administration.
It is truly tragic to hear and read these continual attacks.
When it comes to the U.S. military, women make up more than 14 percent, but the current policy against official ground combat engagement excludes them from at least 238,000 positions according to the American Civil Liberties Union. It is again insulting to suggest that women cannot handle military combat, but it is also an outright lie because they are already doing it in many ways – they just haven’t been getting the recognition.
Maj. Mary Jennings Hegar (pictured above) is one of the individuals involved in this suit against the military. When she was serving in Afghanistan, at one point her rescue helicopter was shot down and she was forced to engage in combat. She suffered injuries (including from shrapnel wounds), but was successful. Despite that kind of bravery, not only is Maj. Hegar still excluded from “officially” participating in ground combat, but she’s also prevented from seeking certain combat leadership positions.
Many females in the army routinely fight in combat situations because of the nature of war and because of real things that are happening on the ground. So while they’re literally fighting for their country, their country doesn’t recognize their sacrifice. They miss out on opportunities to move up in the military or other sorts of promotions that are open to men in combat. While serving in heroic ways that many of us can’t even imagine, it is reprehensible that they are not appropriately recognized, rewarded, or promoted.
If their literal blood, sweat, and tears can be shed to protect us, then their courage, valor, and leadership must be acknowledged.
Back in the ’60s and ’70s, women like the great Shirley Chisholm blazed a trail for females of all races. Today, folks like Ambassador Rice, the women leading this lawsuit against the military, and those who fight every day in battle on all levels are paving the way for the rest of us. We have made extraordinary gains throughout the years, but let’s keep on pushing forward; the challenges aren’t over.
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This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (10/15-10/21)
31 photos Launch gallery
1. Just a NY girl with BIG dreams....
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2. HAPPY CHILDREN=QUALITY PARENTING. We don't always see eye to eye on everything and that's normal. We're human beings. But we come together and do it right for what's important, the kids. We are not enemies, we are parents. And we are parents 1st. S/O to @monyettashaw for making Mason's bday memorable. S/O to @itscrystalsmith at home taking care of our other lil' Prince. ❤️❤️❤️ THIS IS WHAT CO-PARENTING LOOKS LIKE. #Blessed #Happy #AboveTheDrama #BiggerThanUs
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3. So happy to finally be able to share with you all that I’m the new Global Brand Ambassador for @Revlon! Follow my day on RevlonSnaps. Yay! Choose Love, Everybody! #RevlonXCiara #chooselove #ad
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4. Glam on point!!!@makeupbymotoko & @shaylinjoneshair #easybreezy @lifetimetv #beachesmovie #january2017 😘
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5. ✨True love ✨📸: @jessiemarrerophotography
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7. Today was not easy..but by the grace of God we all got through it. Words cannot express our gratitude for all of your Prayers, Positive thoughts and Support for us throughout the years. Tommy will be missed but most certainly never forgotten...And PLEASE don't ask "Where's Martin?.." he was there too...just not in this picture. Lol! God bless you all.. #LoveConquersAll #MartinShow
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9. West coast get ready for #RockyHorror. I will be live tweeting again. #letsdothetimewarpagain
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10. #THEKEYS pre order yours now ... Available everywhere #NOV22 #WeTheBest 🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑
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11. We about to ROCK at #KCABlackBall!! All for our life-changing effort to end 🌎 AIDS.
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12. Today's #SNAPJACK is brought to you by @yazzthegreatest 😂😂😂💋💋💋
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13. Damn girl you kinda old to be headed to the Go Go. You coming in at the age they leaving. LMAO
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14. Daddy daycare B-Boxin with @acewellstucker @shopraisingace
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15. #FBF Naviyd & URV "LIL MONSTERS"
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16. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ONE OF THE BIGGEST LEGENDS IN OUR HIPHOP HISTORY! @snoopdogg CONTINUED BLESSING AND LOVE FAMILY!!!!! REAL OG!
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17. Thank you for a beautiful night VSU! Let's do it again! #HOMECOMING
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18. Had a great time this morning with my familia Erica, Griff & Truth!!
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19. Check out my interview on @essence facebook live. #inmyownwords #nycpromo #day2
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20. #She💋 #tbt #TheCoveAtTheAtlantis #DawgPawsAndAll
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21. Bae #retailtherapy
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22. Why me and @coryhardrict got the same pose... and notee... new mouth #naked
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23. When my husband is my personal 'hype-man'! it kills me every time! 💜😂 #WHATNOW #lostfiles📷
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24. Diggy Simmons
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25. Hand full of @jacquieaiche 💙💎💍 @esnail_la 💅🏾
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26. SuperSoulers! You can watch my interview with Carl Lentz live from my Facebook page, tomorrow at 11a ET| 8a PT. #SuperSoulSunday
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27. 💋 .. When the friendship is easy like Sunday morning. ☀️
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28. Sunday mornings are the best........... hugs and cuddles with my angel
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29. #huggar16 #hellohuggars
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30. My gym is everywhere!.. #RnBMoney #TheGeneral 📸: @twelvepastseven
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31. Nothing I would rather be doing... Rocko setting up our movie, Romelō working on a puzzle & Laiyah singing and sharing all she's learning at school... I'm so grateful for the joy they've brought into my life ... Praying for peace , joy & love in the home of EVERY family ♥️ #HeadScarfPJSunday LOL 😂
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