The United Nations is appointing a new honorary ambassador for the empowerment of women and girls. Who is this newest ambassador at arguably one of the most important organizations in the world?
Why, Wonder Woman of course.
In a statement to National Public Radio, the Outreach Director of the United Nations’ Department of Public Information Maher Nasser said; “Wonder Woman’s character is the most iconic and well known female comic book superhero in the world, known for her strength, fairness and compassion, and her commitment to justice, peace and equality,”
The legendary Themiscyran princess will be given the award and will be officially appointed on October 21st at the United Nations Headquarters in New York City, New York. Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon will present the award and in attendance will be Gal Gadot and Lynda Carter, who both have played the character, Gadot most recently in 2016’s Batman V Superman and the upcoming Wonder Woman feature film. Diane Nelson, the president of DC Entertainment, will be the one to receive the award since Wonder Woman herself wont be able to.
The ceremony coincides with Wonder Woman’s 75th anniversary.
Once appointed, Wonder Woman will play a crucial role in the U.N.’s Sustainable Development Goal #5. Goal # 5 seeks to ” achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls” In the Goal outline, “Gender equality is not only a fundamental human right, but a necessary foundation for a peaceful, prosperous and sustainable world.”
This is not the first time that a cartoon or animated or fictional character has played the role of Ambassador to the United Nations. The International Day of Friendship was helmed by Winnie the Pooh during Kofi Annan’s term as Secretary-General. There have been others as well such as Angry Birds and Tinker Bell.
There are some who are overjoyed at this announcement and still others who think it a bad idea. Britain’s Women’s Equality Party scathingly commented; “fittingly comic that the UN could not think of a single human woman who could take on this role”
The New York Times commented on the state on the United Nations, who itself struggles with diversity and equality in it’s upper echelon of ranks. “That, too, is a bit awkward.” The said. “The United Nations is woefully behind on its pledge of gender parity in senior appointments. One analysis found that nine of 10 senior leadership jobs last year went to men.”
Conversely, website The Mary Sue stated in their article wrote; “That’s certainly a mission we can get behind! And Wonder Woman is a great, easily-recognizable symbol of what women can become once freed from a patriarchal society.”
Wonder Woman is a fantastic role model for women and children across the globe. An icon since the 1940’s Wonder Woman has time and again championed rights for women and for justice for decades. Her morals and her strength will play an important part of her ambassadorship. Fictional or not, the representation of such a powerful figure such as her will be ideal for this role.