A historic moment

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

If you watched the Democratic National Convention on Thursday night, you watched history being made. For the first time in America, a woman has been chosen as the major party nominee for the presidential election. That woman is Hillary Clinton.

I know many of you aren't huge Clinton fans. You could probably talk my ear off about all the things Clinton has done that would make her a bad president, from her email scandal to the attack in Benghazi. There are surely more negative things to be said about Clinton, but I think it's fair to say those are the highlights. Personally, I support Clinton. I think she'll be a good president, and I know she'll have a great team behind her. That's not why I'm writing this column, though.

Nothing I say would change anybody's mind, and I don't really want to do that anyway. We aren't supposed to agree on everything; to do so would be patently un-American. We're a diverse nation, full of different races and religions and political views. It's beautiful that we can all exist together. I would never write anything with the intention of attacking someone who views things differently than I do, because I believe America's diversity to be one of its best virtues.

Because of that, I think everyone should celebrate Clinton's nomination. This isn't about her policy. It's about the fact that she has made history, and we're all watching it happen. She is the first woman who has successfully nabbed a presidential nomination from a major party. That is a big deal, whether you like her, hate her or aren't sure how to feel about her.

Gideon and I watched her speech live, and we were both surprised at how much we liked her. She spoke well and from the heart. Halfway through her speech, I started tearing up. I have never cried while watching a political speech before, so I wasn't sure what was going on. Then it struck me. A large portion of our country is supporting the idea of a woman running for president. Somehow, it's 2016 and this is the first time a woman will be running for president in one of the two major parties. And like many of you, I got to watch that happen live.

That's a moment I'm going to tell my children about. If I have a daughter, I'll know that she'll grow up in a better world because of the way attitudes toward women in power are changing. Hopefully, by the time my daughter is old enough to vote, she'll be able to choose between the most qualified man or woman for the job. It's incredible that there are women living in America today who couldn't vote when they were born, and this year, they'll have the opportunity to vote for a woman if they choose to do so.

Many people are finding it hard to accept this historic moment because the woman who has been chosen to run for president isn't considered ideal. Please don't let that stop you from celebrating. Our country has grown by such leaps and bounds in less than a century, and we need to acknowledge that.

This is a huge moment for all Americans. It makes a statement about the type of country we live in, a place where you can reach high levels of power regardless of your gender. It shows young girls that they can be whatever they want to be and that no dream is too big if you're an American. It assures mothers and fathers that their children are growing up in a better society than they did.

Don't think of this as Hillary Clinton's moment, because it isn't. It's everyone's moment.

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Samantha Jones is associate editor for Carroll County Newspapers. Her email address is Citizen.Editor.Eureka@gmail.com.