Earlier today, the U.S. Treasury Department announced that Harriet Tubman will be the new face on the $20 bill. This of course caused outrage and confusion among conservatives. According to Republican Presidential contender Ted Cruz, the new $20 bill is likely to cause mass confusion. “This will throw our entire economic system into chaos? How much is this bill going to be worth? It won’t be $20 now that there is a woman on the front. So when I go into a donut shop and buy $20 with of donuts they’ll probably only give me $15 worth. That’s crazy.” Cruz’s estimate does have a basis in fact. In the workforce, women actually do make 77% of what a man makes doing the same job. Cruz’s use of an actual fact, even within a nonsensical argument, has caused some Republicans to question his commitment to the conservative ideology where facts are the enemy.
The idea of changing the face of the $20 bill was inspired by the organization Women On 20’s who voted Tubman as the heroic American woman that should receive the honor. Tubman escaped slavery and became one of the leaders of the Underground Railroad rescuing hundreds of enslaved men and women. Her courage, compassion and leadership make her one of the most important figures in U.S. history. Tubman is replacing President Jackson, a former slave owner and one of the men responsible for the Trail of Tears, which led to the death of more than 10,000 Native Americans. Many conservatives are unhappy about his removal. Tubman is the first woman on primary U.S. currency since Susan B. Anthony was honored briefly from 1979-1981 and once again in 1999 when her portrait was placed on a $1 coin. This has many critics of the decision asking why that wasn’t enough for women and why liberals insist on waging a war on men.
The decision is viewed as a major victory for women. Tubman fought for equality both for African Americans and women until her death in 1913. In the more than 100 years since, women and African Americans are now treated as equals to white men in every way with only minor issues for women such as unequal pay, discrimination in the workplace, sexual harassment, having to constantly fight to have legal control over their own bodies and being blamed and shamed when they are sexually assaulted. African Americans likewise have to deal with unequal pay, discrimination, as well as the fear of being harassed or even killed by police simply for how they look. Other than that, both groups are considered perfectly equal to white men.
As for whether the value of the new $20 bill will indeed be valued at 23% less than face value we turn to the statement of South Carolina Republican State Senator Tom Corbin. During a legislative dinner Corbin gave his views on gender equality: “Well, you know God created man first,” he said. ”Then he took the rib out of man to make woman. And you know, a rib is a lesser cut of meat.” Given this wildly evolved view from someone who is clearly a rump roast himself, there will likely be many liberals lining up to trade their $15.40 for Corbin and Cruz’s Harriet Tubman $20s.
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Orbson Rice is the author of the book “Exposing My Orbs: The Rise of a Liberal Satirist” and the “Creator” of the blog “The Orbson Oracle” which is thoroughly offensive, often thoughtful and occasionally funny. Stroke your mouse and visit the Oracle to read more or befriend him on Facebook or Twitter.
Image: CBS News