US Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew has decided that Harriet Tubman will adorn the new $ 20 note to be put into service in 2020, sources in the US Treasury Department told the AP.
This means that Andrew Jackson, the country’s seventh president, will be allowed to give way to Harriet Tubman, who will be the first woman and first African American in history to adorn a US dollar bill.
The ten-dollar bill will also be given a new motive and updated to make it more difficult to forge and will also be introduced in 2020, a hundred years after the introduction of female voting rights in the United States.
Harriet Tubman has long been a popular candidate for the new banknotes.
Trump and Jackson
As a candidate, Trump routinely appealed to African-American voters and challenged them to abandon the Democratic Party, and since he took office he has often boasted of falling unemployment for black Americans. He has also been repeatedly accused of bigotry, most recently by his former personal lawyer Michael Cohen, who testified before Congress last week that his ex-boss was a “cheat” and a “racist.”
Trump has also expressed admiration for Jackson, visited his grave early in his administration and then tweeted, “We honor your memory. We build on your heritage.”
In a recent announcement, the Bank of Canada has revealed that Viola Desmond, who was arrested and jailed in 1946 for refusing to leave a whites-only area of a Nova Scotia movie theatre, will be featured on the new polymer bill. This is important because it is the first time that a Canadian woman graces the face of our currency!
Viola’s story: In 1946, Viola Desmond went to see “The Dark Mirror” at Roseland Theatre in New Glasgow with her husband. When she refused to move from her seat after being asked by an usher, she was dragged out of the theatre kicking and screaming and thrown into jail where she spent 12 hours before being released without charges or explanation. The incident happened two years before Rosa Parks refused to give up her bus seat to a white person in Montgomery, Alabama, and helped spark the Civil Rights Movement.
While Viola’s story is not as well-known as Rosa Parks’, it is still an important part of Canadian history. This bill is a way to commemorate her bravery and resistance in the face of racism. Though the Bank of Canada will not release the exact design, it is likely that her portrait will be on one side of the bill, while an image representing human rights will be on the other.
The bank has stated that there are “technical reasons” for choosing a vertically oriented note, but speculations have arisen about whether this was done to accommodate Viola’s portrait.
The new polymer bills will come into circulation in 2018, the same year that the late Viola Desmond would have turned 100 years old.
Viola Desmond was an entrepreneur and beautician who lived in Halifax, Nova Scotia.
The new bill is not only a way to commemorate Viola Desmond’s bravery and resistance in the face of racism, but it also symbolizes the progress that Canada has made towards equality. It will be interesting to see how this impacts society – for better or worse.