Friday Round Up on Saturday: Women’s Equality Day Edition

by Gloria Feldt on August 27th, 2011
in 9 Ways Blog, Gender, Inspiration, Know Your History, Leadership, No Excuses, Politics, Power Tools, Tell Your Story and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

“Men, their rights and nothing more; women their rights and nothing less.”  ~ Susan B. Anthony, 19th Century Women’s Rights and Suffrage Leader

In celebration and in reflection of Women’s Equality Day, this week’s Round Up collects some wonderful reading about it. Not only about the time when women achieved the right to vote via the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution on August 26th, 1920 but also frank and honest discussions about where women are today in this journey and about the work ahead. Here’s a great timeline from the Susan B. Anthony Center for Women’s Leadership, headed until her untimely death last week by my friend and dedicated leader for women’s equality, Nora Bredes.

PANELPanel at the University of Rochester’s Susan B. Anthony Center for Women’s Leadership. With Susan B. and Elizabeth Cady Stanton pictured in the background, and the late Nora Bredes at the podium moderating panelists Jennifer Lawless (Director of the American University Women and Politics Institute), Allida Black (Founder of the Eleanor Roosevelt Project) and me (in my Susan B Anthony costume–she always wore black with a red scarf) in October, 2010.

A survey of the half-dozen major daily newspapers revealed only one marked the auspicious anniversary on its editorial pages.

In an LA Times Op/Ed “Beyond suffrage: How far have women come since?” authors Eve Weinbaum and Rachel Roth talked of 1920’s feminist Crystal Eastman and how she observed what while the right to vote was a good start, women wanted something much more important.

“The workplace has to change to allow people with families to hold good jobs, and policies must change to allow women to plan their families and to ensure that no one is left behind. In the 90 years since winning the right to vote, women have achieved gains by organizing in the streets and the workplace, by lobbying legislatures and bringing lawsuits. Arranging a more just world will require a new wave of political action at all levels, from local to national, home to workplace.”  ~ Weinbaum/Roth

Action has been a resounding theme in many feminist blog posts in the last 24 hours, especially those included in the #HERvotes Blog Carnival which created a unique cross-organizational blog-a-thon, including MomsRising, the National Women’s Law Center, and Ms. Magazine. I was honored to have my “Three Ways Not to Celebrate Women’s Equality Day” featured, and thank everyone who shared and tweeted it.

Over eighty different voices heard from in the #HERVotes Blog Carnival, on a diverse span of topics. Here a few standouts, but do go peruse the entire list.

Kristin Rowe-Finkbeiner’s “Women’s Equality Day: What the Heck Do I Tell My Daughter?” worried that “there’s certainly not much in the way of news to celebrate on Women’s Equality Day” but “I’m telling my daughter that I’m fighting for her and for all the daughters in our nation on Women’s Equality Day.”

“And as I fight, I’ll be telling my daughter that I’m not alone, and that I’m joining this fight with the more than million members of, as well as with over a hundred aligned organizations. And, I’ll tell her that I’m also joining this fight with the voices of women, daughters, and mothers across the nation who are speaking out on Women’s Equality Day in a #HERvotes Blog Carnival to assert that they are joining together to combat extremist attacks against women’s health and economic security…  For Women’s Equality Day, I’m telling my daughter to fight.” ~Kristin Rowe-Finkbeiner

Jillian J. Foster [DOT] Com also came out with the gloves on ready for action. In her post “HERvotes & Your Voice: Grips Around My Neck Edition” Foster opens her piece by saying “There comes a time when you have to put your money where your mouth is” and I couldn’t agree more.

“As a nation, America is on the verge of becoming something different than we all envision. As I’ve heard many say recently, my values are not being expressed by lawmakers and conservative extremists; I can feel the figurative grips of illogical conservatism around my neck. Now is the time to stand up and make your voice heard. Talk to your friends, write for the local paper, support a candidate that exemplifies your value set, and heavens … VOTE!”  ~ Jillian J. Foster

And on that strong note comes the voice of AAUW President Linda Hallman’s post “Women’s Equality Day 2011: The Start of Something Big” and the launching of their new campaign towards the 2012 election called “My Vote: I Will Be Heard”.

“We will work to educate women across the country about the rights and privileges that are at stake in the upcoming election. We will increase the volume and direction of women’s voices and commit ourselves to getting women to the polls in record numbers.
How will we do it? By doing what AAUW does best: educating, building community, and advocating.” ~ Linda Hallman

Activism could be perceived as a daunting task but sometimes it’s as easy as calling it as you see it and making a phone call. That’s what Scottsdale author Marcia Fine and Paula Cullison did in taking a few steps to successfully protesting a sexist ad. In my Women Media Center’s Exclusive “Make History With your Media Activism on Women’s Equality Day” I’ll tell you how you can honor the 91st anniversary of women’s voting rights by being a MEDIA ACTIVIST today in four easy steps! If we all become media activists, by next year, maybe every major news outlet will have editorials on women’s Equality Day.

Weinbaum & Roth’s LA Times Op/Ed give the marching orders:

“On Aug. 26, 2020, we will celebrate the 100th anniversary of women’s suffrage. Let’s make this the decade we create the conditions that bring true equality.”

So let’s get on with it, shall we?


Gloria Feldt

Gloria Feldt is the author of No Excuses: 9 Ways Women Can Change How We Think About Power. Buy the book here. Engage Gloria for a Speech or Workshop. Tweet @GloriaFeldt and connect on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google+ Gloria is the co-founder (with Amy Litzenberger) of Take the Lead, a new initiative to prepare and propel women to leadership parity by 2025. Find them @takeleadwomen and on Facebook.

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