Tubman replacing Jackson on the $20 a deeply symbolic move
By Deepti Hajela And Errin Haines Whack, The Associated Press
NEW YORK (AP) - Growing up in Oklahoma, Becky Hobbs noticed some of her Cherokee elders wouldn't even touch a $20 bill because they so despised Andrew Jackson. To this day, the 66-year-old songwriter pokes him in the face whenever she gets one.
For Hobbs and many other Native Americans, the U.S. Treasury's decision to replace Jackson's portrait with Harriet Tubman's is a hugely meaningful change.
A slave-owning president who forced Cherokees and many other Indian nations on deadly marches out of their southern homelands, being succeeded by an African-American abolitionist who risked her life to free others? Unprecedented.
"We're just thrilled that Andrew Jackson has had a removal of his own," said Hobbs. "The constant reminder of Andrew Jackson being glorified is sad and sickening to our people."
The Obama administration's decision is groundbreaking in many ways - there hasn't been a woman on paper money in over a century, and there's never been an African-American. Change also is coming to other bills: The history-making appearances of Martin Luther King, Jr., and opera singer Marian Anderson at the Lincoln Memorial will be displayed on the back of the $5 bill, and suffragettes marching for the right of women to vote will appear on the steps of the U.S. Treasury, on the back of the $10 bill.