Women’s contributions to history are often overlooked, which means that historical narratives are overwhelmingly male. A national women’s history museum would be an important means of correcting this oversight in the historical record and ensuring that people of all genders are able to learn about the amazing women who’ve helped shape American history. Locating it on the National Mall near other prominent museums administered by the Smithsonian is commonsense, as is raising half the funds needed to build it from non-federal sources.
The Smithsonian Institution already makes a deliberate effort to teach women’s history through its Women’s History Initiative, which achieves the same goals that a national women’s history museum would. Moreover, on a practical level, the Smithsonian is currently unable to support a huge endeavor like building a new museum. While well-intentioned, this legislation is neither necessary nor feasible given the Smithsonian’s current programming and constraints.