Why not a woman? Why not now?
No. This isn’t about Hillary Clinton’s run for president. It’s about money. Currency really, and a push to get the image of a woman on some of it.
Women on 20s, an advocacy group, wants a woman on the $20 bill by the year 2020 — 100 years after the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution gave women the vote. It may be now or never. Paper currency is old school. Its days may be numbered.
The field for the honor has been narrowed from 100 to the final four — trailblazing first lady Eleanor Roosevelt, abolitionist Harriet Tubman, civil rights icon Rosa Parks and Cherokee leader Wilma Mankiller, the first woman elected chief of a native nation in modern times. To vote, visit the group’s website, womenon20s.org/vote. Please, no Kim Kardashian write-ins.
But why boot Andrew Jackson off the $20? He was the seventh president of the United States. And his pitch then as champion for ordinary people resonates today. But he was a fierce opponent of the central banking system and favored gold and silver coin over paper currency. Think of it as freeing Jackson rather than banishing him.
The president or treasury secretary can make this happen. So can Congress. Somebody should, and sooner rather than later.
It wouldn’t be the first female face on our currency. Martha Washington’s portrait appeared on a $1 silver certificate in 1886 and 1891. But that was so long ago, and for so short a time, it hardly counts. Suffragist Susan B. Anthony and Indian guide Sacagawea, who accompanied the Lewis and Clark expedition, have made it onto dollar coins. But when was the last time you actually used a dollar coin?
So the race is on to see which comes first: A woman in the White House or on the $20 bill.