There's Nothing Complicated About Ordinary Equality
Start writing a post
Politics and Activism

There's Nothing Complicated About Ordinary Equality

"Mr.President, what will you do for women's suffrage?"

There's Nothing Complicated About Ordinary Equality

The presidential election is right around the country and soon, men and women alike will be taking to the polls to cast a vote for their candidate of choice. It's hard to believe that less than 100 hundred years ago, women did not have the right to vote in any election. In honor of Women's Equality Day (August 26), a day set aside to commemorate the passage of the 19th Amendment and to call attention to women’s continuing efforts toward full equality, I'm sharing a brief history of one of my favorite historical figures: the suffragette Alice Paul. While Paul is only one of the many suffragettes who contributed to the cause for women's right to vote, she was a dynamic leader who motivated and empowered women around her to take hold of their own lives and to make a change.

After graduating with a degree in biology from Swarthmore College, Alice Paul traveled to England to study social work practices. Alice Paul joined the suffragette movement in England, believing that the English suffragettes had uncovered the key to equality that continued to elude American suffragettes. When Alice Paul returned to America in 1910, she was ready to re-energize the American campaign for women’s right to vote. Alice Paul and her two friends, Lucy Burns and Crystal Eastman, headed to Washington D.C to organize a publicity event that would gain national attention.They organized an elaborate parade of women to march up Pennsylvania Avenue and disrupt the presidential inauguration of Woodrow Wilson. Alice Paul wanted to hold President Wilson and his party responsible for the disenfranchisement of women.

In 1916, Paul and her followers formed the National Women’s Party. The National Women’s Party organized silent protests in which suffragettes would stand outside the white house holding banners with messages directed at President Wilson. At first, the public was more or less indifferent towards the silent protests. But after the United States entered World War I, the suffragettes were seen as unpatriotic and were attacked by angry mobs. Many suffragettes, including Alice Paul, were eventually arrested and imprisoned for their demonstrations.They were subjected to acts of brutality and poor living conditions while kept in prison.

In protest of their arrests, Paul and some of her followers staged hunger strikes.These hunger strikes were often met with brutal force feedings for the participating suffragettes. Prison officials later removed Alice Paul from the prison and sent her to an asylum in the hopes of getting her declared insane. Eventually, news of the hunger strikes and prison conditions reached the public and the public began to demand the release of the women.The general public began to sympathize with the prisoners and the fight for women’s suffrage quickly gained new support.In response to the public outcry of support for the suffragettes, President Wilson reversed his prior position and announced his support for a suffrage amendment. Alice Paul and her followers were released from prison and together, they anxiously awaited the ratification of the 19th amendment.

It's been 96 years. 96 years full of female voices fighting for their own rights, for the rights of others, for a fair and just government. If Alice Paul were still alive, she would want every citizen to know that every voice out there matters, and not to let anyone tell you otherwise. Paul once said,"I never doubted that equal rights was the right direction. Most reforms, most problems are complicated, But to me there is nothing complicated about ordinary equality." Happy Women's Equality Day everyone, keep fighting the good fight.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Student Life

150 Words For Anyone Who Loves Football Games

Why I love high school football games, even though I don't like football.

Dallas News

When most think of high school they think of friend drama, parties, getting your drivers license, and best of all foot ball games.

Keep Reading... Show less

10 Greatest Speeches In Modern American History

The United States is a relatively infantile nation, but its legacy of spoken rhetoric is one of the richest in the world.


Rhetoric, in all its forms, arrives under the scrutiny of historians both for its historical impact and literary value. Dozens of speeches have either rallied the nation together or driven it drastically apart –– the impact of speeches in politics, social movements, and wars is undeniable.

Keep Reading... Show less

What If The U.N. Actually United The Nations?

This is me taking a break from being cynical and imagining how the world could be one day.


By now, people are probably sick of hearing me talk about myself, so I’m changing it up this week. In keeping with the subject of my J-Term class, I’m asking myself a political what-if question. What if we could create a sovereign global government firmly grounded in justice that could actually adjudicate Earth’s many disparate nation-states into one unified world government?

Keep Reading... Show less

100 Things I'd Rather Do Than Study

Procrastination Nation, unite.

Panda Whale
Here are 100 things I'd rather to than study. I know the semester just started, but

    1. Watch a movie
    2. Take a nap
    3. Have a dance party
    4. Eat ice cream
    5. Bake a cake
    6. Cry just a little bit
    7. Knit a blanket
    8. Learn to ride a bike
    9. Build a crib
    10. Watch a hockey game
    11. Watch any game
    12. Play with my hair
    13. Dye my hair
    14. Go grocery shopping
    15. Learn to crochet
    16. Do 50 jumping jacks
    17. Drive cross country
    18. Take a bubble bath
    19. Squeeze lemons for lemonade
    20. Sell the lemonade
    21. Make heart-shaped ice cubes
    22. Moisturize my knees
    23. Paint my nails
    24. Find the cure for cancer
    25. Run a marathon
    26. Just kidding, run down the hall
    27. Squat my bodyweight
    28. Eat my bodyweight in French fries
    29. Hibernate until Christmas
    30. Cuddle my body pillow (unless you have a boo)
    31. Think about all the work I’m not doing
    32. Wash my bed sheets
    33. Vacuum my apartment
    34. Play mini golf
    35. Go swimming
    36. Tan in this Texas heat
    37. Sing like I’m about to win American Idol
    38. Blow up balloons
    39. Pop the balloons
    40. Make lists
    41. Write an Odyssey article
    42. Pet a puppy
    43. Adopt a puppy
    44. Pay my rent
    45. Order a pizza
    46. Start a garden
    47. Cook a turkey
    48. Find new music
    49. Clean my waffle iron
    50. Learn to make jam
    51. Jam to music
    52. Play scrabble
    53. Volunteer anywhere
    54. Celebrate a birthday
    55. Watch a makeup tutorial I’ll never use
    56. Go through old pictures on my phone
    57. Make a playlist
    58. Take a shower
    59. Clean my room
    60. Curl my hair
    61. Climb a rock wall
    62. Get a massage
    63. Play with Snapchat filters
    64. Roast a chicken
    65. Go fishing
    66. Chug some Snapple
    67. Ride in a cart around Walmart
    68. Count the days until the semester is over
    69. Overthink about my future
    70. Think of my future baby’s names
    71. Pin everything on Pinterest
    72. Text anybody
    73. Pray about life
    74. Watch a sunset
    75. Watch a sunrise
    76. Have a picnic
    77. Read a book (that’s not for school)
    78. Go to a bakery
    79. Snuggle a bunny
    80. Clean my apartment
    81. Wash my dishes
    82. Rearrange my furniture
    83. Physically run away from my problems
    84. Make some meatballs
    85. Learn to make bread
    86. Google myself
    87. Ride a Ferris wheel
    88. Get stuck on a Ferris wheel (that way, it’s not my fault I’m not studying)
    89. Wash my car
    90. Get on a plane to Neverland
    91. Find Narnia in my closet
    92. Jump on a trampoline
    93. Learn to ice skate
    94. Go rollerblading
    95. Ride a rollercoaster
    96. Carve a pumpkin
    97. Restore water in a third world country
    98. FaceTime my family
    99. Hug my mom
    100. Tell my friends I love them

    The Basics Of The United Nations

    As the General Assembly convenes, here is the United Nations 101


    For an organization that literally unites the nations, it amazes me how little is taught about the United Nations in schools, or at least where I went to school. It wasn't until I went to college and got a higher education that I learned the basics of the United Nations. I believe that every American should know at least the basics of what the United Nations does, especially since our country is one of the 5 permanent members. So here are the main "organs" of the United Nations.

    Keep Reading... Show less

    Subscribe to Our Newsletter

    Facebook Comments