What a great year to celebrate women. We have a one hundred year celebration for women’s rights and voting. Suffrage has given women the right to vote AND the right to be elected.
I guess there are always people who want to limit decision making as they sit in judgment. Today it seems strange that just a little over a century ago, women were not allowed to vote. Why would men feel they were better equipped to make decisions than women? Actually it seems like they still want to govern what a woman can do with her own body. Strange.
Revelations and reality don’t happen overnight, they take years. Women sailed from England and Europe and made homes and worked as hard as men. They learned to read as well or better than men. They undertook the advice of Horace Greely “Go west young man.” They walked, drove wagons, cooked, and settled villages, and towns along the way. They made sure their children had an education and lined up for the first co-educational college in 1833 (Oberlin Collegiate Institute).
On August 18, 1920, the 19th amendment was ratified giving women a little power. It took decades of persistence before men recognized the fact that in a democracy, women are smart too.
Evidently even with getting the right to vote, change moves slowly. The up hill battle finally saw a shift with women’s rights in the late sixties and early seventies with major universities finally accepting women as students. Common sense is rare, but sometimes . . . just sometimes common sense prevails, and the right decisions are made and life improves; perhaps, not a lot, but it improves.
“Feminism is the radical notion that women are people.”
– Marie Shear
We have 26 women serving in the United States Senate, 17 Democrats and 9 Republicans. That is the highest proportion of women serving as U.S. senators in our history.
“The dichotomy is delicious. Inside the fantasy genre, I try to present women who need to solve real problems like having no voice in community, or no right to work; no access to capital to start a business. No reinforcement for talent.”
– Stella Atrium
On February 14th, we celebrated the birth of the League of Women Voters and their 100th anniversary.
“The League of Women Voters began as a ‘mighty political experiment’ aimed to help newly enfranchised women exercise their responsibilities as voters. Originally, only women could join the league; but in 1973 the charter was modified to include men. LWV operates at the local, state, and national level, with over 1,000 local and 50 state leagues, and one territory league in the U.S. Virgin Islands.” – lwv.org/
Women’s groups, both black and white fought for the right of women to vote. I am ashamed that many men opposed the right to vote. I guess we’re not as smart as we think we are.
Americans should vote. People have fought for the right to vote. It is both a privilege and an obligation. We should all take part in the laws that govern our country. African-American men got the right in 1870. Women got the right to vote in 1920, and most native Americans got the right to vote in 1948, and finally the last state to guarantee voting rights for Native people was New Mexico in 1962.
Candidate for U.S. president Joe Biden has declared he will select a female as his running mate as vice president. This could cost him votes, but I believe in the near future we will have a woman as president. It’s taken a hundred years to get this far. It’ll be interesting to see what the next hundred years has in store for America and the world.
“In the future, there will be no female leaders. There will just be leaders.”
– Sheryl Sandberg, Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead