WHAT YOU NEVER KNEW ABOUT THE SUFFRAGETTE MOVEMENT

DID YOU KNOW?

Feminism is everywhere right now, from our TV screens to the computer screens. It seems that the conversation is finally moving forward, thanks to years of struggle around the globe. Take suffragettes, for instance, women who seeked the right to vote through organised protest. You might have heard about the movement through the film of the same title that came out some three years ago and starred Carey Mulligan and Meryl Streep. Here are a few facts about the movement in the US that you may still be unaware of.

1. The first state to grant women's voting rights is one you'll never guess.

That's because it wasn't even a state when the rule was passed. Wyoming, in United States, was the first to pass a women's suffrage law before it even joined the union. In fact, in 1990, Congress even threatened to withhold statehood because of the law. As expected, the government eventually backed down.

2. The first group to protest at the White House was totally badass.

They called themselves the Silent Sentinels, and they held vigil in front of 1600 Pennsylvanians for two-and-a-half years (six days a week) until the 19th Amendment was passed. Much like Mulligan's character in the film and her comrades, they were arrested and endured torture and force-feedings.

3. The fight for birth control rights is almost 100 years old. 

Margaret Sanger opened the first contraceptive clinic in 1916 – and it was promptly shut down.

4. The Equal Rights Amendment has technically never been ratified.

And the bill's journey has been harrowing. It went to the Senate in 1923, the House of Representatives in the 1970s, and has been pushing for approval ever since.

5. The United States is one of the worst countries for female leaders.

It is not new information that the country has never had a female head of state, but at least 50 countries have beat it to the punch. How depressing is that?


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COMMENTS

    Sandy Oestreich commented 2 weeks ago

    Kudos on your fine story on the Equal Rights Amendment! There is so much to know and learn about it and proponents' struggles like ours and our gradual successes: Did you know that Nevada just ratified/voted for the Equal Rights Amendment just one year ago? Did you know that should shut down the o

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