When Women Answer the Call to Leadership
For those of us laboring in the "women in leadership" fields, it's very heartening to read the Op-Ed page of the New York Times this morning.
Maureen Dowd tells us the jig is up on military rape, assault and harassment because the "women of Congress are on the case."
Three of the six Senate Armed Services subcommittees are now led by women. Senator Claire McCaskill of Missouri, a former prosecutor who is one of seven women (five of them lawyers) on the Armed Services Committee, has held up the nomination of Lt. Gen. Susan Helms to be vice commander of the Air Force’s Space Command until she investigates why Helms overturned a conviction in a sexual assault case.
“You don’t get to decide who’s telling the truth and supplant the judgment of the jury you handpicked if you weren’t in the courtroom observing the witnesses,” Senator McCaskill said. “You’ve got to put systems in place where you catch these cowards committing crimes and you put them in prison.”
The military brass cossetting predators are on notice. The women of Congress are on the case.
In Postcard From Yemen on that same page. Thomas L. Freidman tells us that there's a ray of hope in the water wars because women are on the case.
There is a ray of hope, though. Yemenis are engaged in a unique and peaceful national dialogue — very different from Syria and Egypt and with about a third of the input coming from women — to produce a new leadership. They may be starting at the bottom. But, of all the Arab awakening states, they do have the best chance to start over — now — if they seize it.
These are the reasons we step up to power, particularly if we have the education, wisdom, knowledge, training and background to make a difference for our fellows - male and female.
Because with great privilege comes great responsibility. Because, as Mary Oliver wrote, When it's over, I don't want to wonder/if I have made of my life something particular, and real./I don't want to find myself sighing and frightened/or full of argument/I don't want to end up simply having visited this world.