Harriet Tubman Reshuffles the Deck
Choice of abolitionist on the $20 bill tests Jacksonian loyalists
Sometime in the future, someone looking to sell information in a crime movie will say, “I only speak to Harriet Tubman.” And then that someone will be slipped a $20 bill.
The Treasury Department’s announcement on Wednesday that Andrew Jackson was coming off the front of the $20 bill and the black abolitionist was replacing him has been met for the most part with positive reactions.
“I love it,” said Oprah Winfrey , who added that Tubman was her first choice, followed by Sojourner Truth.
And how would fans of Alexander Hamilton, who was previously set to lose his spot on the $10 bill, have reacted if the Treasury had stuck to that plan? It would have been bad timing, especially this week, when the musical “Hamilton” won the Pulitzer Prize for drama.
Alexander Hamilton Gets a Reprieve
Certainly Comedy Central’s “Drunk History” program was stoked. Last year’s installment of “Harriet Tubman Leads an Army of Bad Bitches,” is enjoying a renaissance as people Google “Harriet Tubman.”
But not everyone was on board. Ben Carson, the neurosurgeon and former GOP presidential candidate, told anyone who would listen that Tubman shouldn’t displace Jackson, but should go on the $2 bill instead — bumping Thomas Jefferson, widely regarded as one of the greatest presidents (or at least that’s what the Washington Nationals and Mt. Rushmore tell us.)
Republican front-runner Donald Trump followed suit on Wednesday, saying displacing Jackson was “pure political correctness” and that Tubman should instead displace the author of the Declaration of Independence on the $2 bill, The Daily Beast reported .
And because it’s really all about the 2016 race, satirists on Twitter got in on the act too, with @FuturePrezTrump suggesting that the best use of the front of the $20 bill would be Melania Trump, in a bikini, of course.
— President Trump (@FuturePrezTrump) April 21, 2016