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Have Women Broken the Glass Ceiling Yet?

In her latest article for Black America Web, Tamika Mallory highlights Shirley Chisholm's pivotal and historic 1968 House win, major strides in the number of female senators and Susan Rice's possible nomination as President Obama's secretary of state to argue that, while monumental gains have been made, there is a long road ahead before the glass ceiling is completely shattered.

In 1968, a woman by the name of Shirley Chisholm became the first African-American female to serve in the U.S. Congress.  And a few years later, Chisholm broke ground again when she ran for President.  Fast forward to the 2012 election, and women made historic gains in the Senate — they now hold 20 seats. But is that enough to say we made true change and progress? This past week, four female war vets filed suit against the Defense Department because of the military's policy barring women from ground combat. And who can forget the latest shocking attacks against UN Ambassador Susan Rice. The vile criticism she has received is not only unwarranted, but it is clearly full of sexist and racist language. Looks like we still need to break a hell of a lot more cracks in that glass ceiling.

While trying to demonize Ambassador Rice, her critics have failed to recognize this leader's tremendous accomplishments.  Even back in high school, she was class president, valedictorian, and a great athlete. Rice went on to attend school at Stanford, where she graduated as a Truman Scholar and junior Phi Beta Kappa, and Ambassador Rice was also a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford.

Those early achievements and her stellar career afterward speak volumes as to what barriers she broke through both personally and professionally. Instead of painting an accurate picture of her, those criticizing her want to continually insult a Black woman serving in an esteemed position within the Administration.


Read Tamika Mallory's entire piece at Black America Web

The Root aims to foster and advance conversations about issues relevant to the black Diaspora by presenting a variety of opinions from all perspectives, whether or not those opinions are shared by our editorial staff.

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