The 100th anniversary of 19th Amendment is in 2020, Expect Events!

The 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment to the United State Constitution is coming up in 2020. The 19th Amendment (1920) to the Constitution of the United States provides men and women with equal voting rights (by which we mean gave women the right to vote). The amendment states that the right of citizens to vote “shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.” However, many women were denied the right to vote in 1920 and for decades following the amendment. Look for events in 2020, commemorating the amendment (the step forward), doing some reconciliation with women of color, and seeing what else American women need.

It is shocking to realize that American Women didn’t win the right to vote until 1920. We won this right after many hard fought battles lasting over 72 years, counting from 1848 and Seneca Falls, when the fight got more focused. In truth, the women’s suffrage movement dates as far back as the Revolutionary War. Still, not all women got the right to vote in 1920.

Jane Watson dressed as Suffragette on ERA Bill Filing Day, 3/5/19. Photo Credit: ERA-NC Alliance

Though the 19th Amendment granted suffrage to all women on paper and in theory, women of color and poor women and women from some other countries were still disenfranchised and prevented from voting.”

Read more about what happened and when different women did get the right to vote at https://wp.me/p22b2e-1oX.

In anticipation of the 100th anniversary, different organizations are doing different things. NC NOW is involved with a group of diverse leaders who are sharing their events. Some of us want to make a signature event and are going to start to meet to define that event. Suggestions range from a women’s march and rally type event to an indoor all day education, sharing and motivation event. One thing we know we want to include for sure is a reconciliation portion. Like this ACLU article says, we want to “Celebrate Women’s Suffrage, but Don’t Whitewash the Movement’s Racism,” 8/24/18, https://www.aclu.org/blog/womens-rights/celebrate-womens-suffrage-dont-whitewash-movements-racism.

Some organizations and even governmental departments in North Carolina will be running events around the state. Would you like to get involved in defining and planning such an event? Do you want the occasional update? If so either way, contact me. Our first meeting will be in June 2019.

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