2019 belonged to women. Period.
Women from across the world spoke out, were heard, and created a massive impact this past year. Here is a compilation of a few women who were in the news last year!
One woman, or rather girl, who really made herself heard was the sixteen-year-old climate activist from Sweden, Greta Thunberg.
Greta started off by protesting against government inaction towards climate change by skipping school each Friday and sitting outside the Swedish parliament. But this little act of hers snowballed into a massive movement across the world against climate change. Greta inspired millions of students, who became more aware of the detrimental impact of global warming and urged governments across the world to do their bit to make the world a better place.
In the past year, Greta has addressed conferences across the world that have included the UN Climate Action Summit in New York, and the UN Climate Change Conference in Spain.
For the towering role that she played, Greta was awarded the TIME Person of the Year for 2019, becoming the youngest recipient of the honour. She was also nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize for 2019.
Speaker of the United States House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi was in the news for the most part of 2019. The 79-year-old stateswoman played a pivotal role in the impeachment of the 45th President of the United States, Donald Trump for high crimes and misdemeanours.
Pelosi, the most powerful woman in the United States, was sworn in as the Speaker earlier in the year. After resisting calls for impeachment against President Trump for a while, she formally announced an impeachment inquiry in September 2019, which culminated in the President getting impeachment for two articles – abuse of power, and obstruction of Congress.
One of the most poignant moments of last year in American politics was in October, when Pelosi, surrounded by male congressional leaders and top military officials, stood up at a large table, pointing her finger towards the President. Visibly, the President looked stunned whereas the other leaders hung their heads in shame.
This was when Pelosi was demanding answers to the President’s actions in northern Syria, where Turkey had launched an offensive against the longtime U.S allies, the Kurds.
The picture showed the dominant position that Pelosi holds in the U.S politics and the absolute powerhouse that she is!
The Prime Minister of New Zealand, Jacinda Ardern is widely considered one of the most powerful women in the world.
Her strong yet compassionate response to the ghastly shootings in two mosques in Christchurch in March 2019, in which 51 people were killed and dozens of others injured brought her much international praise and acclaim. She admitted that there were loopholes in the government’s policy on gun laws and announced the government’s decision to introduce more stringent firearms regulations. Further, she also met with the families of the victims.
She also visited members of the Muslim community at the Phillipstown Community Centre wearing a hijab, a scarf covering her head. The photo was widely shared and described by The Guardian as “an image of hope.” The sombre black headscarf, which so beautifully demonstrated unity in diversity, gave out a strong message against terrorism and for unity.
Who else do you think should have belonged to this list? Do let us know of other women who had a huge impact last year.