John Andrist: A Good Woman Wanted for President

North Dakota Girls Staters make their away across campus at UND for a morning session at the annual event. photo by Eric Hylden/Grand Forks Herald

I don’t know about you, but I’m looking forward to having our first woman president for these disjointed United States.

I’ve noted in the past that the female sex seems to be out-starring those of us equipped with low voices, a larger body frame, and somewhat larger biceps.

I suspect it is because of our larger body sizes (not mine, but possibly yours) that throughout history we have been able to subjugate and dominate the fairer sex.

But in reality they are the queens and we are the drones.

Ever since they were given the right to vote they have been spreading their wings. They dominate church government and discipleship, music and the arts, civic activity in our rural communities, and care-giving vocations.

Moreover they are growing in influence in politics, governance, the business world, and even in athletics to some degree.

Although suppressed to a large degree in many places, mostly in poorer countries and some religious communities, they keep emerging.

They now dominate admissions to protestant seminaries that welcome them, and likely will be dominant in the pulpits of those groups, if they aren’t already.

We may have a corner on brute strength, but they seem to have an edge in gumption and tenacity.

Trouble is, sex should never be the reason for electing them, any more than religion or skin color.

Their numbers boast more heads of state than ever before, and I look forward to seeing it happen here — “Madam President”.

Trouble is, sex should never be the reason for electing them, any more than religion or skin color.

And such leading contenders as Hillary Clinton, Sarah Palin, and Elizabeth Warren don’t pass my personal smell test. How about someone with the intellect of Condoleeza Rice? I’d sign on in a minute for her.

As I type this column I’m less than three hours short of the precise time nine years ago when I said goodbye for the last time to the lady I loved above all others.

She loved her role as a mother and homemaker. And yet she was the real power behind anything my children and I were able to do.

That is the unique ability above all others that women seem to have. They lead while following.

Another kind of quiet leadership

Energy Transfer Partners is a little known giant corporation. But among their subsidiaries is Dakota Access Pipe Lines, which is very well known in North Dakota

Protesters bent on stopping the build-out of a large pipeline cost our state dearly last year, somewhere close to $45 million.

It was not DAPL that incurred those costs. They followed legal siting and construction procedures throughout the dispute.

The whole nightmare came to an end early this year. But last week the company sent the state $15 million to help pay debt accumulated from that protest.

They could have done it in the heat of the conflict or even after the new pipeline was put into service.

Surely their critics would have accused them of buying influence or grandstanding.

So they waited until the landscape was quiet again, so not to rekindle strong emotions of those who were pipeline detractors.

I thought it was an act of kindness, responsibility, and sensitivity. Their critics likely disagree.

They gave them no slack for anything. They blamed them for the route, which was often changed at request of the Corps of Engineers; they blamed them for high handedness, because they followed the government mandated process; they accused them of bullying the Tribe, even though it was the Tribe that refused to sit at the table with them; and they accused the law enforcement community of violence, even though the police were committed to protection from the violence perpetrated by those protesters.

Now the tribe itself has decided to replace their chairman who was the architect of the long dispute.

Thanks DAPL, for helping us re-establish our quiet landscape.

Rob Port is the editor of, a columnist for the Forum News Service, and the host of the Rob (Re)Port on Fargo-based WDAY AM970 from noon-2pm weekdays.

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