On February 5, 2019, President Trump delivered the State of the Union Address after its delay due to the partial government shutdown, stirring controversy amongst whether or not to hold the Address on its intended scheduled date, which was January 29th. All conflicts aside, this particular Address was nothing less than encouraging and prideful to witness, as the Democratic women of the House "...put on a stunning display of solidarity" as well as to symbolize the suffrage rights in which were historically fought for women to be represented equally in politics.
There are more female representatives in the House than there has ever been (more than 100), and this mere fact I say with pride and hope that women will continue to be empowered and to rise above, throughout this nation and worldwide. Rather than competing alongside one another, men or women, Democratic or Republican -- I hope for a future where progress will be made through teamwork and cooperation. Though the majority of the House is comprised of mostly Democratic women, having roughly over a dozen Women representing the Republicans, I see this as a stride forward. As we should not divide ourselves by our mere labels, rather, as the faces of women who are taking the steps necessary to create more room and more acknowledgment of women serving in politics.
I particularly pride upon the young Representatives taking initiative within our nation. Politics aside, I view these Representatives as those who desired change so they [became] the change, or the movement for it, thereof. These people can be the young political faces of your city or state; whomever you look up to. We often complain of things we do not like within this political era, but rarely does anyone actually DO something about it beyond sharing a Facebook video. I can not say that I have taken even a quarter of the leaps many of our female representatives have taken today, in terms of gender equalizing politics and fighting for the change they desire. But I look up to the men and women we have that we so often see on the news headlines, taking the initiatives and even risks that many of us can not speak for, to progress our nation's politics and further diversify the platform.
I would like to, in particular, applaud Representative Ocasio-Cortez, whom at the young age of 29 was able to claim a seat in the Primary and be amongst the group of Women, proudly wearing white, during Trump's Address. I would also like to point out that Rep. Ocasio-Cortez stood out, as she wore a pin in solidarity for young Guatemalan girl, Jakelin Caal, who was amongst the illegal migrants in the hands of Border Protection Custody, tragically dying shortly after detainment. The argument of whether or not PBC is at fault for this young girl's life is not relevant to my reasoning for mentioning this story. Rather, an act of sentiment, respect, and empathy that Rep. Ocasio-Cortez brought with her during the Address in which I simply would like to commemorate her for. Though nothing can ever relieve the pain of a family's grieving, it is small moments of remembrance and tribute that can create the public attention necessary to prevent similar tragedies from repeating itself.
I applaud the prideful faces of all the diverse women taking strides within politics today. I would also like to applaud the men who have helped women to rise within politics and increase the platform to be wider and more equal, where men and women can serve alongside one another, regardless of labels. The only label I emphasize here is that of unity, for, without unity, we will fall short.