Monday, November 3, 2008

Election Day

We all need to get out and vote tomorrow!!! It is very important we take advantage of this great freedom we have been blessed with of voting who we think is the person to make the decisions that are in the best interest for our great nation. I received this e-mail regarding what women did to get the right to vote. They truely were persecuted. Do not let their blood, sweat and tears go unnoticed by not voting.

THIS IS MOVING. HOW QUICKLY WE FORGET.....IF WE EVER KNEW...... WHY WOMEN SHOULD VOTEThis is the story of our Grandmothers and Great-grandmothers; they lived only 90 years ago.Remember, it was not until 1920
that women were granted the right to go to the polls and vote.
The women were innocent and defenseless, but they were jailednonetheless for picketing the White House, carrying signs askingfor the vote.
(Lucy Burns)And by the end of the night, they were barely alive.Forty prison guards wielding clubs and their warden's blessingwent on a rampage against the 33 women wrongly convicted of'obstructing sidewalk traffic.'They beat Lucy Burns, chained her hands to the cell bars aboveher head and left her hanging for the night, bleeding and gaspingfor air.(Dora Lewis)They hurled Dora Lewis into a dark cell, smashed herhead against an iron bed and knocked her out cold. Her cell mate,Alice Cosu, thought Lewis was dead and suffered a heart attack.Additional affidavits describe the guards grabbing, dragging,beating, choking, slamming, pinching, twisting and kicking the women.Thus unfolded the 'Night of Terror' on Nov. 15, 1917,when the warden at the Occoquan Workhouse in Virginia ordered hisguards to teach a lesson to the suffragists imprisoned there becausethey dared to picket Woodrow Wilson's White House for the rightto vote.
For weeks, the women's only water came from an open pail. Theirfood--all of it colorless slop--was infested with worms.(Alice Paul)When one of the leaders, Alice Paul, embarked on a hunger strike, they tied her to a chair, forced a tube down her throat and poured liquid into her until she vomited. She was tortured like this for weeksuntil word was smuggled out to the press. So, refresh my memory. Some women won't vote this year because--why, exactly? We have carpool duties? We have to get to work?Our vote doesn't matter? It's raining?Last week, I went to a sparsely attended screening of HBO's newmovie 'Iron Jawed Angels.' It is a graphic depiction of the battlethese women waged so that I could pull the curtain at the pollingbooth and have my say. I am ashamed to say I needed the reminder.All these years later, voter registration is still my passion. But theactual act of voting had become less personal for me, more rote.Frankly, voting often felt more like an obligation than a privilege.Sometimes it was inconvenient.My friend Wendy, who is my age and studied women's history,saw the HBO movie, too. When she stopped by my desk to talkabout it, she looked angry. She was--with herself. 'One thoughtkept coming back to me as I watched that movie,' she said.'What would those women think of the way I use, or don't use,my right to vote? All of us take it for granted now, not justyounger women, but those of us who did seek to learn.' Theright to vote, she said, had become valuable to her 'all over again.'HBO released the movie on video and DVD I wish all history,social studies and government teachers would include the movie intheir curriculum I want it shown on Bunco night, too, and anywhereelse women gather. I realize this isn't our usual idea of socializing,but we are not voting in the numbers that we should be, and I thinka little shock therapy is in order.It is jarring to watch Woodrow Wilson and his cronies try to persuade a psychiatrist to declare Alice Paul insane so that she could be permanently institutionalized. And it is inspiring to watch the doctor refuse. Alice Paul was strong, he said, and brave. That didn't make her crazy.The doctor admonished the men: 'Courage in women is often mistaken for insanity.'Please, if you are so inclined, pass this on to all the women you know.
We need to get out and vote and use this right that was fought sohard for by these very courageous women. Whether you vote democratic, republican or independent party - remember to vote.History is being made.
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1 comment:

campbell.craig said...

I can remember how hard I had to work to become a citizen of the United States and how proud I am of my certificate and my right to vote. Voting day is a huge thing in my home. I love going up to Polk school in the morning and doing what is my right. I love this country that is now my home, and I am very proud of calling it my home.