Newly elected Florida Congresswoman Frederica Wilson has a “hatitude.”
Even before she takes the oath of office, Wilson is shaking things up in Washington and trying to change the status-quo.
Wilson wants to wear her trademark hats in the halls of Congress. But archaic House rules prohibit members from wearing hats on the House floor.
The rule date backs to the 19th century. It’s a throwback to a time when it was considered improper for a man to wear a hat indoors. Of course, there were no women serving in Congress back then — or voting at all, for that matter.
Fortunately, times have changed and Wilson, a freshman Democrat, isn’t being frivolous by asking that the rule be changed or possibly waived. She will likely need a vote of the full House. It should support the change.
Wilson’s protest makes a valid point, that the hat rule is sexist and outdated. Apparently, she would be forbidden from wearing a hat even for her official photo.
A former state representative and senator, Wilson has become well known in her home state for her flamboyant and colorful hats. She says she dons them in honor of her grandmother.
Sure, the new Congress has more serious matters to take up when it convenes in January. But it should let Wilson wear her hats.