I am a conservative woman. I often feel like I can not just end that sentence with a period, that I must pivot with a comma and provide an explanation. I can feel and see the confusion in my audience and must elaborate it seems, like there is a general notion of conservative woman being an oxymoron. I have found that confusion over a woman being conservative is not rooted in facts, but rather in third wave feminism’s emphasis of party and platform being the initial qualifier for feminist inclusion, relegating gender to a secondary position.
I am a proud conservative woman because I believe staunchly in capitalism. I am saddened by many things in present day public opinion, but most notably the emerging point to capitalism as the source of inequality of all kinds. I am a conservative woman because I know, from being a college student with an unofficial part time residence in the library, that capitalism breeds the ability for specialization which breeds a diverse and interdependent economy. The very framework of capitalism has a call for equality because it allows for specialization that tangibly displays the many unique identities and interests America is home too. I am a conservative woman because I believe that capitalism gives the chance for prosperity, and prosperity gives the ability to build a home in the country encouraging it.
I am a proud conservative woman because I value the lessons of history. I value the lessons that history has shown tenfold of how minority groups have overcome barriers to being fully valued members of society, and the common thread that goes all too unnoticed through them is success. I believe that the path from making eighty three cents to a man’s one dollar is not one lined with vagina hats and male demonizing messages; but rather one stressing individual education and the power of individual success as a weapon. I am a conservative woman because I believe that obtaining equal rights is more effectively pursued through staying at your job and working to further your business instead of requesting paid time off to contest the results of the American people’s votes.
I am a proud conservative woman for many more reasons than what I have already explained, but largely because of the conservative role models history has provided for me: Condoleeza Rice, Hope Hicks, Elaine Chao, Sandra Day O’Connor, Katie Walsh, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, Peggy Noonan, and the Congresswoman I am proud to say represents my district, Karen Handel. All of these women have given me many things: hope, inspiration, insight, but they have also given me a pithy explanation to give those who don’t understand my being a proud conservative woman. So, the next time I am met with confusion over my choice to be a proud and conservative woman, I think I will just say “ Condoleeza Rice,” and walk away.