A civil rights activist, an abolitionist, a leader, Harriet Tubman has undeniably impacted history in tremendous ways. The shift from Andrew Jackson being the face of the $20 bill to Harriet Tubman has led to varied opinions. We, the Ranger staff, are here to tell you ours — and that is Harriet Tubman soon becoming the face of the $20 bill represents great strides in social, political and gender equality.
Andrew Jackson has been the face of this bill since 1928, but does that make him the right choice? Jackson is known for being a ruthless slave holder and for signing and putting the Indian removal act into effect. Those facts raise the question: Is he really the individual we want to represent the nation on our currency? No. This history undeniably calls for change, and Tubman is the perfect candidate.
Harriet Tubman is known for helping countless slaves escape via the Underground Railroad, and she even altered the path to continue to help slaves when the fugitive slave law was passed. She later also worked as a nurse, cook, scout and spy for the Union Army.
According to biography.com, referring to U.S. Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew, “Secretary Lew’s choice of the freed slave and freedom fighter Harriet Tubman to one day feature on the $20 note is an exciting one, especially given that she emerged as the choice of more than half a million voters in our online poll last Spring.” We could not agree more.
Jackson is not the man we can proudly say is worthy of representation on our currency despite the fact that he has for so long. Tubman taking over is a shift we can stand behind with great pride and conviction. Not only is she an individual worthy of great respect, but
Tubman will be the only woman to be on the front of U.S. currency with the short-lived exception of Martha Washington on the $1 silver certificate in the late 19th century. According to theatlantic.com, native American Pocahontas appeared on the back of the $1 bill in the 1860s. “Women have been more commonly featured on U.S. coins: the Susan B. Anthony dollar coin, the Sacagawea dollar coin and Helen Keller’s appearance on an Alabama special-issue quarter.” (theatlantic.com)
In 2016, it is more than past time for this change to occur. Harriet Tubman is the prime candidate to spark the shift; we believe other growth in political, social and gender equality will follow suit. Harriet Tubman is a woman of great strength, determination and activism. We proudly stand behind her becoming the new face of the $20 bill, and we hope you will, too. Stand up with strength and dignity like Harriet Tubman did and support this change. It is 2016, after all.