Women on the $20 bill: It’s time for a change

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Photo credit/ Kelsey Van Horn

Patrick Kernan, Opinion Editor

Take out your wallet and, if you have one, pull out a $20. Look at the face on the bill.

In the crazy-haired and stony-eyed face of President Andrew Jackson, one sees the face of a man who is hardly the high point of American history; in fact, for his acts against the Native American people in the infamous Trail of Tears, Jackson’s presidency may be one of the lowest points.

Does this man truly deserve to be on American currency?

Absolutely not.

According to The Washington Post, the group Women on 20s is attempting to pull Jackson off the bill and replace him with a woman: either Eleanor Roosevelt, Harriet Tubman, Rosa Parks, or Wilma Mankiller, the first female chief of the Cherokee nation.

What makes this list interesting is that this group looks nothing like the individuals currently on American currency; none of them held a traditional role in American government, three of them are not white, and all of them are women.

The inclusion of any of these women on the twenty dollar bill would make several bold statements.

By pulling Jackson off the bill, it would be symbolically condemning his actions.

By replacing him with a woman, it would show that Americans value women, who have been ignored (with the exception of Sacagawea on somewhat unpopular dollar coins) on American money.

And, if Jackson were replaced with Tubman, Parks, or Mankiller, it would send a statement that America stands with minorities as well as women.

Perhaps it would be most fitting to replace Jackson with Mankiller; replacing a man who treated Native Americans in a horrible manner with a successful Native American woman is the sort of delicious irony historians dream about.

Women on 20s is taking their petition in front of the Senate soon. If there are any senators reading this, hear this: It’s time.

To learn about the women in the campaign, check the sidebar.

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