THE BLOG

Are You Voting for the Women?

11/02/2010 10:41 am 10:41:20 | Updated May 25, 2011

In one of the most contentious political years ever remembered (by me), we have tea parties shouting down latte drinkers, broadcast icons blasting lies and innuendos over the airwaves and politicians and supporters riling up hundreds of thousands through accusations never proven. Some may consider this exciting. But for me it's exhausting. Every morning I go to my place of Zen to avoid the emotional roller coaster that is in my face when trying to get the news of the day from the multiple sources of media attacking eyes and ears and brain simultaneously. It truly is a battlefield to the senses.

As the co-founder of a women's program, with the vision to create more women leaders in the world, I have one area of satisfaction with today's political scene. More women than ever are running for political office. More women are standing up to be counted and have determined that they are willing to to put themselves out there to make real change in the way our government is being lead. In addition, More women are spending their own money to do this. For perhaps the first time, more women candidates actually have the big bucks. They have earned those millions as leaders of their own companies, like Linda McMahon running for Senate in Connecticut, or former CEOs of corporations, Meg Whitman, Republican candidate for Governor, and Cary Fiorina, Republican candidate for Senator, both in California. That alone is cause for celebration, because that is progress.

Now here comes the hard part for me personally, and perhaps for other feminists. We have worked hard to move women up the ladder of success and to get more women to run for higher political office. Finally it is happening. Do we support the women -- simply because they are women -- or do we choose the candidate we believe will do the best job? And if we choose to support the best candidate, and we believe it is the male candidate, how vocal should we be? It's a puzzlement!

In the old days, ten years ago, I never really thought about this, because who knew we would actually live to see this. I'm simultaneously delighted and excited and perplexed. It was a no-brainer for me when Hillary ran for office. But now I am filled with angst because the formula is changing. The three women I referenced also come with caveats. None of them have any former political experience. All used their own big bucks to run their campaigns. They have never held any office on any level. Now this in itself is not exclusive to women. Many men have used their personal coffers to run for political office and some have done a good job. Men like Mike Bloomberg: he runs New York City like an effective corporation. And it has worked, do you run a state like a company? Do you know how to serve in the Senate if you have never collaborated in the past?

I guess, what I have come to realize, is that if women are going to play in the same sports and the same fields as the guys, we are going to begin to play the way they do. We will win some and lose some -- and that means we have finally arrived. Election day is here. So follow your intuition. Vote for who you think will do the best job for your local government, your state and your country. Let's hope that all of us believe that many of those people, who we believe will do the best job, are women! After all, we tend to be very good listeners. Now let's prove that we can take the actions necessary to move our nation forward.