On August 18th, 1920 the 19th Amendment was passed. This historic law made it legal for women to vote in the United States of America. Looking back on how far we have come as a country that has allowed women to vote makes me feel proud. In the past, I have read and heard that in many countries the right for a woman to vote is not possible. In fact, a couple of years ago I remember a story about a ninety year old woman who just cast her first vote. She was unable to vote in her own country due to laws. When she moved here and she became an American citizen she was given the privilege of casting a vote. After hearing many stories around the world, I don’t take my right to vote for granted. Many women and men in the past had fought for women to have this right. Today, women in America are able to vote. They are able to vote in other countries, like Canada and the United Kingdom. But, they are not able to vote in other countries. The 19th Amendment paved the way for women to get involved in politics, voice their opinion, and be more involved in their own country. I am blessed to have the right and privilege to vote. However, many woman around the world are not as lucky as I am in the United States and some other countries.
One of my writing inspirations is J.K. Rowling! The author of the Harry Potter series who was persistent enough to make it a reality. After being turned down by various publishers, she never gave up hope. I really do admire J.K. Rowling and hope she has a fantastic birthday. There was so much she had to over come before she got where she is today. A real life rags to riches story she is able to prove that dream can come true if you work hard and believe. J.K. Rowling is by far an amazing woman who has, not just inspired me, but many others world wide.
“Be happy with what you have while working for what you want.”- Helen Keller
When I woke up this morning I learned that Helen Keller was born on this day back in 1880. Through her tough childhood starting at the age of two with scarlet fever rendering her blind, deaf, and mute she had to over come more than many others had to. Severely, misunderstood for her inability to communicate with her family and friends her parents called in Anne Sullivan who taught Helen reading, writing, and how to communicate using braille. Since her childhood, Helen proved to be smarter than she looked. She was able to go to college and get an education. Helen Keller became an activist and remained active in causes for Women’s Rights and other political activities. This bright woman is remembered for showing the world to not dwell on your shortcomings, but to appreciate what is around you.
One of the real life girls who I was fascinated by in my childhood was, and still is, Anne Frank. The young Jewish girl whose diary was released for the world to see. I have read her diary and was touched by what she wrote. She described about what it was like to go into hiding with eight other people. To live in an annex because she was Jewish and would have been sent off to a concentration camp. Her diary describes the conditions that she had to live under, such as no flushing the toilet and food rations. She talks about what she would like to be when she grows up with dreams of Hollywood.
In 1942, on her thirteenth birthday, she received the diary that would become world famous. As we all know she would not live past the age of fifteen because her family was found. She was sent off to Bergen-Belson where she would pass away due to typhus in February of 1945, just three months before the end of the war. The only person to survive the ordeal was her father, Otto, who published her diary. Anne Frank’s story is one that lives on today. It shows courage in a time of war. It shows peace in a time of fighting. There is so much that Anne Frank had to offer the world before her life was cut short. Today, her story does live on, with the world to acknowledge Anne Frank for who she was and how she lived her short life.
When E.L. James introduced the poorly written phenomenon Fifty Shades of Grey to the world I was hooked. I understood what was happening in the book as it went along. When I started to read I thought of what Anastasia Steele had become by the end of the first novel. A submissive girl who is completely dependent on one man, Christian Grey. The way that Christian obtains her is by stalking making me wonder why she went after him in the first place.
Christian basically spent the first novel stalking Ana. He sent her multiple text messages and gave her gifts. The part that got me the most is when Ana was introduced to “the contract” Christian gave her. Originally, she said no to what she would have to do. Then he hunted her down and she said yes to him. Why would you say yes to a man who wants to control your entire life? He tells her in this contract what she has to eat, wear, drink, and act. There is almost no freedom she is able to get once she says yes. Ana just gives into him entirely not really thinking about what he can do to her.
Then there is the part when Ana announces that she is going away to go visit her mother. Christian gets infuriated with her. He feels like she needs to get permission from him with any venture she takes. In the movie, we see him storm out in the middle of dinner with his family with Ana in tow. He ends up so infuriated and Ana ends up calming him down. He lets her go to Georgia to see her mother, only for him to come in a day later to follow up on her. Christians stalking of Ana is so obsessive that it is almost impossible to comprehend.
The biggest problem that I have in the end is that Ana pushes Christian away constantly and she takes him back. All the time in the book Ana has to do everything that Christian says to do. Every time she pushes him away it is a breath of fresh air. We want Ana to push Christian away. But, in the end she takes him back for what ever reason. Anastasia Steele is far from a role model for young girls for the way that she chooses Christian over freedom.
In the Twilight series we are introduced to a lonely girl who ends up falling in love with a vampire. Her entire life ends up revolving around him and she goes as far as hurting herself. As far as I am concerned Bella Swan, is not a good role model. Many girls look up to this consistent damsel in distress with pleasure. They end up idolizing her when she jumps off a cliff just to get a glimpse of Edward. She leaves town abruptly and flies off to Arizona in order to “protect” herself from danger.
The one thing Bella does not do in this series is stand up for herself. She stands up for those who she cares about which is noble. But, she puts everything aside just to be with Edward. She ends up sacrificing her dreams of going to college to become a vampire. She chooses to say good-bye to her family in order to start a new life at just eighteen. Yes, eighteen, she ended up marrying Edward. She was just a teenager when she “chose” to make all of these important decisions most people don’t make until after they are out of college.
The only time we see Bella go into battle is in the final movie against the Volturi, then we discover it never happened. The only good quality about Bella is that she stands up for her daughter when she is danger. There way that Bella acts and the way that she is does not make her a good role model for young girls. She ends up moving too fast with her relationship with Edward leading her to become submissive and practically dead inside without him around. Her whole entire life ends up revolving around one man. Bella can’t seem to do anything with her life once Edward steps in.
The top girl is Nancy Drew! The teenage detective who made her debut in the 1930’s is still inspiring young girls today. From TV shows to computer games, she lights up the lives in young girls. Using her mind and talent there is nothing Nancy Drew cant’t do. In all of her adventures she takes on the task head on with no regrets. Although, she runs into trouble here and there, she makes it through to save the day. Whether it be foiling a theft or solving a murder she always figures out a way to get the job done.
Knowing that there is a loophole in every suspects statement, Nancy looks for the answers. In times of a crime being committed it is only a matter of time before suspects point the finger at one another. That is when Nancy steps in! She is able to get the answers from the suspects in order to find out who the real culprit is. Many of the suspects twist their stories to look innocent, even use family connections to get out of them. It does not matter who they are to Nancy Drew, if they are guilty, then the truth will come out. Looking to help solve a crime to benefit others is something that Nancy does best. Even if it does mean ticking a few well known people off.
In all of her mysteries, she can’t go at it alone. With the help of best friends Bess and George, boyfriend Ned, maid Hannah, and reluctant father Carson, Nancy has many alliances around her. Never to trusting, Nancy has been known to prove the innocence of many people presumed guilty. She is never one to trust a person by their looks, but she knows that there is good in them. In several of her mysteries there is a friend who she knows is innocent. She dedicates the rest of the book/movie/television episode/computer game to proving their innocence. In doing so, Nancy is loyal and trustworthy. Taking the lead from her father who has taught her well, Nancy is there for those in need. Even though her hunches don’t always prove to be correct, Nancy is there for those in need.
Struggling to keep her personal life separate from her amateur sleuth life is a tough thing. She has met criticism from the police, neighbors, and her own family for partaking in mysteries. The danger is real every time Nancy agrees to help someone out. Given, some of these times are just helping out a friend with grocery shopping or assignments, there tends to be trouble lurking around the corner. Against the wishes of many Nancy takes on the case to make sure that everyone is able to sleep soundly at night. Knowing that she could get hurt or worse is what causes many who are close to her to try and stop her from going at the mystery. But, nothing stops the curiosity of the teenage sleuth. In times of kidnapping and theft this has happened many times.
The town of River Heights is safe thanks to Nancy Drew’s ability to solve a crime. She is a heroine to me and I idolize her for everything she does. She goes out of her way to make sure the job gets done. From traveling the globe to finding trouble in her own backyard, Nancy is a detective with soul. Nancy Drew is a female role model who I hope will continue to inspire young girls in the future!
In the popular series for young girls Dear America, we read about a different time in history. In each book, the main character is a young girl who is witnessing the course of history. Although, there are something that come with the time period that is being depicted, each girl is independent. In every one of the books we read about survival and the importance of trust. Looking to those around us to support us in our time of need. From the Salem Witch Trials to the Vietnam War each story will mesmerize you. When we hear about the tough times of the past it is hard to imagine how we would handle such things as war, epidemics, and genocide. But, in the Dear America book series we read about a strong young girl who has persevered from these events and continued on with her life after to achieve her goals in life.
In Roll of Thunder, Hear my Cry by Margaret D. Taylor we are introduced to a spunky, yet bright girl Cassie Logan. The series continues on, as we watch Cassie grow into a young woman. Despite her loving personality, Cassie is looked down upon by many. This book series takes place during the Great Depression in Mississippi, and Cassie is African American. Many of the white people in the book already judge her based on her race. They don’t see beyond her face, yet she ignores this and perseveres. She wakes up everyday and goes to school in order to get an education. Later, on in the books, we see Cassie be exposed to the injustice that has been done to her friends and family. Even if it means losing site of achieving her dreams, Cassie stands by those who are being treated unfairly. Loyal, trustworthy, and true Cassie Logan stands strong even in the times where she is judged for what she looks like, not who she is.
The final American Girl in this series is Addy Walker. A young girl who was born a slave who escaped to freedom with her mother. Sadly, her father and brother were sadly sold as slaves to another master. In order to escape from slavery, Addy and her mother had to leave her baby sister behind. Addy had lost a lot before escaping the tyranny of slavery on route to Philadelphia. Once she and her mother successfully moved she had enrolled in school. She was able to teach her mother how to read, write, and do mathematics. Addy is a brave and courageous young girl who is able to teach other young girls a lesson through her life. Her education started later in life because she was born into slavery and this obviously affected her ability to get a proper education. Once she was free from her master and able to live a life, Addy embraced who she truly was. She never looked back and proceeded on with her life.