Thursday, April 11, 2019

Anniversary of Women's Right to Vote

Wisconsin To Commemorate Women's Right To Vote Anniversary

Dear Governor Evers. You might note this from Google: When the Republican Party regained control of Congress in 1919, the Equal Suffrage Amendment finally passed the House in May of that year and in the Senate in June. When the Amendment was submitted to the states, 26 of the 36 states that ratified it had Republican legislatures. (Google: Votes in House of Representatives when women's right to vote first passed.)

While working on my MEd in History at Fitchburg State University, I took a course entitled “Women in American History.” One of the things we were taught by our female professor was that the first time the 19th amendment passed the house it was by one vote, with Republicans voting more heavily for it than Democrats. One Congressmen was carried in on a stretcher. Another left his wife’s death bed to vote for it. She was dead when he got back. I believe both were Republicans, but it’s been a long time. The second time it passed, the margin was larger, again with more GOP support than Democrat. That time it passed the Senate and, in close votes, was ratified by the states.

Woodrow Wilson Versus the Suffragettes

Excerpt: I'm here to clear up any confusion left by Berg and John Milton Cooper, Jr., another author of a tome on Wilson. From the moment he set foot in Washington's Union Station and found he was upstaged by Paul's strategically timed suffrage parade on March 3, Wilson was a foe, not a friend, of the "Votes for Women" mass movement led by Paul. Its base camp was in a beautiful brick home nestled near the Capitol, where feelings ran strong that this fundamental right was long overdue. Women could not vote; ergo, they were not citizens in a democracy. Let me give you the backstory they never do. Did I note Berg and Cooper are Princeton Tigers? Where Susan B. Anthony had fallen short after a lifetime, Paul would cross the finish line to victory. This is the crucial turning point in momentum: Paul was the first political leader in American history to turn all pressure and focus on one man, namely the president of the United States. It was a contest of wills, with no pretense of amity. Paul stormed the nation's capital in a series of marches, protests or vigils in plain view of the president – almost every single day. Wilson occasionally invited the women chained to the White House gates inside the White House for a chat over tea that invariably turned into a lecture. Wilson didn't really like outspoken women who talked back, and disliked teaching at Bryn Mawr College before he joined the faculty of his alma mater Princeton, of which he became president. The perspicacious Paul, who studied at Swarthmore College (as did I) and the London School of Economics, was not prepared to play student to his professor. The president and the suffragette were just not each other's cup of tea. Right here in Washington, Paul created the most vivid political theater ever seen, teaching outdoor street techniques and tactics she learned in London, where she joined the suffragette movement led by the females in the Pankhurst family. Paul shunned the plodding campaign of petition signatures that Anthony had waged, state by state. Hers was an exhilarating movement centered on the federal government and its head; women came in droves from Philadelphia and other cities to be part of it. And then it got ugly: women were arrested for civil disobedience. Wives, sisters and daughters were detained under horrid conditions in Virginia. Outrage spread when word got out that Paul and other leaders were force-fed, a human rights abuse. (Our first “Progressive President.” And did I mention he was a racist? ~Bob)

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