Hello, my Friends! This past week I was inspired by many different things. I saw the movie “Iron Jawed Angels”, then I watched “On the basis of sex” and then went into The Brandywine River Museum of Art which has a huge section on the American Suffragette movement. So let’s get some background.
The American movement happened at the same time as the British one, but the Americans tried hard to NOT use violence. There were two major groups in the early 1900’s in America. One was called National American Woman Suffrage Association. These were the old school gals who had been fighting for the right to vote since pre-civil war. Then there were the newer and younger gals at the National Womens Party, run by young Quaker Alice Paul. The NAWSA was a fan of getting each state to vote for women suffrage. NWP went the way of getting an overall amendment passed. They both worked hard to get women the vote. After years of lobbying, protesting, prades, and even being abused in prison women eventually got the vote.
So you might be asking what am I going to say about it? Well, one thing I am so impressed with women who went out day after day to fight for their rights. They risked everything, many times even their physical safety, to get their rights. They were strong women. What is also amazing is even after all their hard work, the centuries of hard, we are still looking at great disparities between men and women globally, as well as in America. Women still do not make as much money as men. Women still do not have the same opportunities in jobs as men do. It took 170 years to put women in the board room.
Around the world it gets even sadder. In some places women can not get educated at all much less vote. They do not have the means to leave dangerous relationships. Children are being forced to marry people who are adults. All of these things are just symptoms of a big problem. That the world do not see women as full citizens. Most of the time women are seen as little more than property, even in richer places. This is a sad fact around the world, one that we as a community need to change and easily can change!
So yes, this weekend I have had an in-depth dive into the American Suffrage Movement. And yes, I have only really hit the surface levels of it and I think that we all need to spend some time looking into this. Also more important remember how hard it was for women to get the vote, how much struggle, and how much effort it took. Do not forget to use it.
Mark Oliver Wizard Goldstein