I have grown up with Hillary Clinton. When I started practicing law in 1983, there were essentially no women civil trial lawyers in Kansas City, with the notable exception of one. I was so fortunate to try my first case with the only woman that I know tried civil jury trials before me, Martha Hickman. When Martha got out of law school, she could not join the local bar association because of her gender. Martha was my only female mentor and I was fortunate to work with her on several cases. However, most female lawyers on the plaintiffs' side had no mentors. When I was searching for a job out of law school, knowing that I wanted to be a trial lawyer, several male lawyers in male law firms asked me how I expected to be a trial lawyer and still mother my child. They were parents, too. In never occurred to them that my struggles with life balance should have been there struggles, too. In fact, just this summer, a male lawyer who was opposing counsel told me that he thought it was too hard for women to be trial lawyers and have a family. His wife had quit law when she got pregnant. I did not argue with him, I just went about the business of representing my client trying his case. My children, now grown, are well-adjusted adults, who incidentally appreciate both of their parents. Plus, my son is just as ardent a feminist as is his sister.
I remember when Hillary was first lady. I worked in an office where it was common for some of the employees to constantly ridicule her. And ridicule her they did. She couldn't do anything right. I never understood why people hated her so much. I could never see what she was doing wrong as first lady. Sure, she took a more active role in policy decisions than any other first lady. But, she is very smart and driven. I think people were threatened by her. I really admired how she held up when her husband was being impeached. I would have withered under all of the scrutiny. She did not. She is determined, perhaps to a fault.
Many women today have never been without female role models. I think that's great. I think Bernie Sanders respects women. However, he has never personally felt the sting of non-acceptance based on gender. Women make up 52% of this country. It's time for a woman to be President.