In the United States, mid-term elections are quickly approaching. This is in the midst of an often confusing and downright depressing political climate. However, as more females are running for office in the U.S.. This gives many women and minority communities cause for hope. These pioneering women need our support to make sure they are successful. This is particularly true given how few women have risen to political power.
A Rising Tide of Female Leadership
When looking to make future change, we must first understand the past. What should we do to help achieve the just and sustainable world of our dreams? One significant step forward can be made in boosting female leadership. In fact, we all benefit from increasing women’s presence in political leadership.
Progress ebbs and flows. Hopefully, we are seeing an ongoing flow in female leadership worldwide. The recent uptick in women’s political activities gives cause for hope that the tide is rising. This year may very well go down in history as a landmark year for women’s achievements. However, we cannot ignore how much progress pioneering women of the past have already made.
Women’s Political Organizations
The last presidential election took many advocates by surprise. In its wake, however, organizations advancing women’s rights in the political process have blossomed. The increase in women’s political advocacy organizations heralds a more hopeful future. In fact, many people are hopeful for many progressive causes, not just so-called women’s issues.
Political organizations made for and by women matter.
They involve women at every stage of the political process—organizing, advocating, and representing their peers. They ensure the most accurate and expansive realization of democracy. We need more women in leadership because they are necessary for an equitable political structure.
After all, effective democracy means every identity is represented.
But more than that, involving women in politics results in the development of better policy. Women leaders help enact policies that are inclusive, equitable, and responsive to all concerns. This is a marked benefit from the policy status quo.
Benefits to Female Leadership are Incontrovertible
When it comes to the benefits of female leadership, the proof is in the facts. Companies led by women see better business performance. Female political leaders create more meaningful social programs in their home countries.
In fact, the executive director of UN Women said that “women's participation is fundamental to democracy.” Further, women are “essential to the achievement of sustainable development and peace.” Indeed, when more women are involved in decision making and nation building, everybody benefits.
Phoolan Devi stands out as an example and role model to young girls around the world.
She showed us all how much women can do to make the world a better place. This is true even in the face of gender-motivated violence and abuse. As a girl in her teens, Phoolan Devi was swept up in a world of violence and crime.
However, she refused to remain a victim. Instead, she became a daring bandit and vigilante. Ultimately, she rose to become a legend and a folk hero among the poor Indian communities she came to represent. After reforming her criminal ways, Phoolan’s leadership continued.
At the time of her death, she was a well-respected and popular member of India’s parliament. Phoolan was murdered in 2001. But violence could not stop her after death just as it couldn’t stop her in life.
Phoolan’s extraordinary life has inspired girls and women around the world.
She is even credited for founding a new feminist revolution in India. As the world elects more female leaders, hopefully we will see more reform like that triggered by Phoolan. At the very least, we will have fresh faces to usher in the next generation of female leaders.