Editorial at Washington Post, 19 July 19
PRESIDENT TRUMP, who as a candidate in 2016 derided as “pure political correctness” the plan to honor Harriet Tubman by featuring the Underground Railroad’s most celebrated conductor’s image on the front of the $20 bill, can rest easy: Thanks to the intervention of his treasury secretary, Steven Mnuchin, only likenesses of white men will appear on U.S. paper money for the duration of his presidency....
The Trump administration’s stock in trade is divisiveness, particularly where it concerns race and ethnicity. As usual, though, Mr. Trump underestimates the American people: Many Americans of every race despaired that the plan to honor Tubman was derailed, and that includes some Republicans. Among them is Gov. Larry Hogan of Maryland (where Tubman was born), who wrote to Mr. Mnuchin expressing his disappointment. The famed abolitionist, Mr. Hogan wrote, “more than earned her rightful place among our nation’s most pivotal leaders....”
Harriet Tubman is an American hero, not a wedge issue. As Mr. Hogan said, she deserves to be recognized by having her image enshrined on U.S. currency, much as her name adorns parks and monuments in Maryland.
The Washington Post tells the story of Alan Turing, just slated. to appear on 50 pound bank notes beginning in 2021. Amazing that Britain can get the new bill into circulation (along with the Jane Austen bill and the Stephen Hawking coin) but we have to wait until 2030 for a Harriet Tubman bill.
Gizmodo's coverage includes an image of the note.