America's Constitutional Enfranchisement of Women Essay

America's Constitutional Enfranchisement of Women Essay

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America's Constitutional Enfranchisement of Women

During the course of America’s history, the women’s suffrage movement
experienced many dynamics. It is commonly recognized as having been
initiated with the women’s involvement in helping black slaves achieve
freedom from slavery and overall citizenship rights. Little did these
women know that the soon to be instituted 15th amendment would
constitutionally enfranchise men of every race and ethnicity, but
still exclude them. For those women who had been actively involved in
helping the Negroes gain a sympathetic voice, this neglect to
acknowledge women in the amendment was nothing less than a heinous
outrage. They quickly realized that the governing body of white men
would more quickly give freedom to uneducated and poor foreigners than
to their own mothers and wives, whom were steadily beginning to make
financial contributions at home as a result of industrialization.
Herein, I’ll illustrate how the frequent lack of unity amongst the
various women’s suffrage organizations postponed their attainment of
full constitutional enfranchisement.

Women, who had formerly helped the Negroes attain freedom, formed
their own suffrage organizations, shortly after the creation of the 15th
amendment. They sought to give women a political voice of
representation, such that they might be recognized as full-fledged
citizens, thereby earning the right to vote. The various groups each
had their own reason for wanting such rights, but basically, they all
wanted the ability to legally defend their own best interests. Lower
and middle class women, often affected by men’s abuse of
alcohol—sought the abil...


... middle of paper ...


...ism during wartime and the
enormous membership of the NASWA, which peaked at 2 million, congress
finally passed a woman’s suffrage amendment. The amendment was legally
endorsed nationwide by late August of 1920. In conclusion, the
enfranchisement effort was long threatened by the inconsistency, the
lack of focus and unity by the various women’s organizations, but in
the end, that same lack of unity forced the American government to
consider the amount of energy that women were investing into this
movement. Women dynamically showed their desire to become
enfranchised, each in their own way: some by picketing, some by
lobbying senators, some by merely holding membership in an
organization. It was this phenomenal membership and its capacity to do
either harm or good that eventually overwhelmed the male governing
body.

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