Rep. Tulsi Gabbard Message for International Women's Day
The message below was presented to at the Kauai County Committee on the Status of Women, Women's History Month Celebration:
For too long, women have been written out of history. When looking to Rosalind Franklin, the woman who discovered the structure of DNA, or Mary Shelley, the writer of the first science fiction novel, and countless other examples, women throughout history have made significant contributions without being adequately recognized. Though Hawaiʻi has faced challenges of its own, we’re so fortunate to come from a state where strong women leaders like Ka'ahumanu, Queen Emma, Saint Marianne Cope, Queen Liliʻuokalani, Isabella Aiona Abbott, Congresswoman Patsy Mink, and so many others, that have shaped our collective history and worked to break down barriers and create a better future for the next generation. Because of their leadership and service, women in Hawaiʻi lead across every sector today: education, government, military service, business, medicine, culture and the arts, technology and so much more.
Today in Congress, we have more women serving than ever before, and the momentum is continuing to build nationwide. Tens of thousands have showed interest in running for office over the last year, with at least 390 women running for the U.S. House of Representatives this November. Increasing diversity in our federal, state, and local governments is critical to strengthening our democracy, and making progress on key issues, like defending women’s health access, ensuring equal pay for equal work, passing paid family and medical leave, slamming the door shut on sexual assault and harassment, and so much more.
It’s up to us to challenge the status quo, to lead by example, to take the opportunity to inform and educate- not just in our words but through our actions. Now, more than ever, our nation is in dire need of the aloha spirit, and it is our kuleana to act and speak in this spirit of love, compassion, and true respect for all as we work to protect women’s rights and grow opportunities for our sisters here on Kauaʻi, and across our state and country—we are one ʻohana. Standing together, we can accomplish many things, even in the face of adversity. Mahalo nui loa to each of you here today who has remained committed this fight. I look forward to continuing to work alongside you to build a better future together.