Self-portrait by Jane Rubin. Pencil on paper. Copyright July 2022.
ABOVE: Jane Cohen Rubin at the Columbia Alumni Center in 2023 — Jane Cohen Rubin received her B.A. from Columbia University with Academic and Visual Art honors. While she was a Columbia and Barnard undergraduate, Jane Rubin was a performer, stage designer, speaker, and an exhibited and published artist. Jane's family was not wealthy. They were middle-class. Jane worked in a bookstore at 116th street. She was a waitress during the Summer.
In childhood — people said I would be the first woman president.

I was a political extrovert — and passionate about civil rights.

Let's get this straight as well — my family was middle-class — not rich.

My parents sent me to York's rough, inner city public schools — and they expected self-discipline and self-reliance.

When I was nine — I started a Children for McGovern Campaign with my best friend — Andy Stewart.

Andy was a swimmer. I was a ballet dancer.

Our athletic competitiveness was part of our early childhood friendship.

We were walking home from Jackson Elementary School in Fall 1972 — I can still visualize it precisely — when we were almost in front of my house — I said — "Let's start a McGovern Campaign."

Then we decided to build our Campaign HQ on East Springettsbury — and Andy said he was going to run home and get his stuffed Donkey.

The rest was history.

Our parents played no part in our McGovern Campaign.

We conceptualized and executed it ourselves.

Neighborhood friends joined in.

We collected money for the campaign — by literally stopping cars — with the help of two golden retrievers — Gus and Shelley. Then we fearlessly pitched the drivers on McGovern-Shriver — holding out a fund-raising jar.

Considering the bigotry in York — that was gutsy of us.

Then — the Teen Democrats of York took me with them — to the Senate Building in Washington D.C. — where I was introduced to Gary Hart — who was McGovern's National Campaign Director.

Obviously — that was many years before Hart's undoing in 1988 — when he was a Democratic primary candidate.

In October 1972 — Hart and the McGovern campaign staff assembled in the room — commented that I might become the first woman President.

Oh yeah — Leonard Nimoy was campaigning for McGovern and came to York, PA to speak. That was cool. Vulcan pacifism was cool.

The funny part was when Nimoy pointed to his human ears — to let me know that he did not actually have pointy ears.

As happy as I was at age nine to meet Spock — I basically laughed and replied:

"No kidding."

My Fellow Americans and World Citizens — a comparison of my Grandfather's life with my own — is a stark illustration of misogyny.

I am the female version of Herbert Cohen — and was in childhood — one of the reasons why my Grandfather and I were so close before he died in 1970.

However — while Herbert Cohen's intensity — was admired and called "presidential" — Jane Cohen Rubin has been repeatedly bullied and slandered for exhibiting similar leadership qualities.

I am not masculine.

I am on the feminine side of the spectrum — like every woman in my family.

I am a biologically feminine cisgender woman — and I was a feminine little girl.

I simply had a progressive grandfather and father — who encouraged me to be bold — and I also did not have any brothers.

Other adults in York, family members, family friends, and teachers — also prognosticated that I may become the First Woman President.

My career plan was to become a Civil Rights Attorney and President — while also giving dance performances. My Dad — a talented clarinetist — wanted that to be President and Concert Pianist. At family suppers there were numerous debates about whether it would be President-Dancer or President-Pianist.

Our Children-for-McGovern Headquarters — on Springettsbury Avenue — was covered in the York Daily Record for two days. I was quoted in support of school busing and desegregation.

I am confident that I had the leadership qualities to become an effective and compassionate U.S. President.

However — my development and life went in the direction of Art — so I am not running for any political office.

If I had gone the political route — and ended up in the Oval Office — it may have been a number of Firsts:

First Woman President — First Jewish-American President — and the First President to paint her own presidential portrait — and it would be from life — not from photos.

Our middle-class home at 919 McKenzie Street in York, Pennsylvania was like a Democratic Party Convention every night.

Along with my own open-minded family — I was also raised by a multi-cultural extended family — who were political and civil rights leaders. So — as children — my sisters and I received a lot of political homeschooling — simply because of the people who frequently gathered in our house — and the conversations and debates going on around us.

However — none of them told me what to do.

My decisions were my own.

As everyone who raised me and grew up with me would say:

My boldness was evident in early childhood.

I was also a feminine little girl.

That scientific fact is important.

I was not physically aggressive.

I was a talented ballet dancer — and my style was naturally girlish.

Ballerinas are tough.

In combination with my DNA — and my upbringing in York, PA's rough city school system — where my sisters and I were the only Jewish Children — the serious ballet training I had from early childhood to my pre-teens built relentless self-discipline — stability — and the physical and mental ability to rise above injury — a blessing and curse in my life. I never called myself "SuperJane." Others did. However — physical and psychological injuries scar me and can end my life as well — even if people do not see it. We all deserve compassion.

My Grandfather and Dad encouraged me to express my Girl Power.

The most signficant factor in my early development was the encouragement of my progressive Grandfather and Dad — who were my primary nurturers.

Additionally — I had no brothers — who may have lessened the attention that my Dad gave me.

Having been raised by a nurturing Grandfather and Dad — made me a Bold Girl and a Bold Woman.

My hormones are feminine.

My biological gender-identity is female and feminine.

I only respond to men.

I am heterosexual.

Like my accomplished — but overly humble — family — in adulthood — I was overly self-effacing.

I exhibited my art and performed spoken word, music, and live painting and drawing at pro sports events — without anyone representing me — on my own. As a result of being too humble and unprotected — I became a serial victim of crime and defamation.

Mentally unstable men and women — in mainstream pop culture — as well as their political and business cohort — people who are total strangers — have been lying about my identity — and criminally victimizing me.

They permanently and severely injured me and my family.

America needs to do a better job — of putting the mental health microscope — on those with the money and media power — to hide their illnesses and addictions.

While I have never had a chronic mental illness — and I have never had a substance abuse issue — numerous people and institutions are quite delusional and dangerous — when it comes to me.

Rather than slandering and bullying me — or any talented American Citizen — who is not "protected" — by wealth — public relations machines — and political-corporate networks...

Focus on this: The mentally unstable people — who have harmed my family and me — are not above the law.