Sunday, September 28, 2008

Another Reason to Vote (As If You Needed One)

...[the organization] commanded the attention of politicians and the public through its aggressive agitation, relentless lobbying, creative publicity stunts, repeated acts of nonviolent confrontation, and examples of civil disobedience.

[tactics used] to accomplish...goals were versatile and creative.

Conventional politicking was supplemented by other more public actions–including parades, pageants, street speaking, demonstrations, and mass meetings.

Speaking tours, motorcade parades, banners, billboards, and other methods helped spread the word and educate the public.

Is this a description of some modern-day political action group? No, these quotes are about the women of the National Woman's Party, which was founded in 1913. The women were campaigning for the privilege of voting in America. Congress did not approve of the 19th Amendment giving them the vote until 1919, and it wasn't approved by the states until 1920.

From Women of Protest: Photographs from the Records of the National Woman's Party, Manuscript Division, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.

The willingness of NWP [National Woman's Party] pickets to be arrested, their campaign for recognition as political prisoners rather than as criminals, and their acts of civil disobedience in jail–including hunger strikes and the retaliatory force-feedings by authorities–shocked the nation and brought attention and support to their cause. Through constant agitation, the NWP effectively compelled President Wilson to support a federal woman suffrage amendment. Similar pressure on national and state legislators led to congressional approval of the 19th Amendment in June 1919 and ratification 14 months later by three-fourths of the states.

All quotes are from the article,Tactics and Techniques of the National Woman's Party Suffrage Campaign, Library of Congress, American Memory.


Margie's Musings said...

I know! Every woman in America should exercise their right to vote after all those early women went through to get that right for us.

African Americans should feel the same way. Every black in America should vote.

Sylvia K said...

I totally agree with you and Margie both! Women and African Americans should do everything possible to promote and get Obama elected! Let's keep it up!