WASHINGTON, DC — So many little girls, for so long, were told overtly and subtly what they could and could not be. Housewives? Yes. Teachers? Sure. President? Unlikely.
They were told not to express their opinions too strongly — it’s not polite. To not challenge a man — it’s not ladylike.
For those girls, many of them now mothers with little girls of their own, what happened Tuesday night was more than a political triumph.
Regardless of party persuasion, Hillary Clinton’s victory is the definition of historic: She became the first female presidential nominee of a major political party.
Her chances of becoming president — the first woman head of state in America’s 238-year history — are now much closer to reality.
“When I was a kid I was never told, ‘You could be president one day.’ My brothers were,” Emily Dreyfuss, a writer with Wired magazine, tweeted Tuesday. “I could be an actress, a teacher, a mother, a writer!”
Be what you want to be
The impact of the moment was not lost on Clinton.
Before she took the stage to a euphoric victory rally, she posted two photos to her Instagram page.
The first was a picture of her in a hallway with a little girl.
“To every little girl who dreams big: Yes, you can be anything you want—even president. Tonight is for you,” the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee said.
The second was her going over her speech, pen in hand. The caption simply read: “Ready.”
On stage, Clinton talked about the role her mother played in shaping her future. Dorothy Rodham was born the day Congress passed the 19th Amendment — which allowed women to vote.
“My mother believed that life is about serving others. And she taught me never to back down from a bully — which it turns out was pretty good advice,” Clinton said.
“I wish she could see her daughter become the Democratic party’s nominee.”