The right to vote is a precious right that people fought for over many years until amendments were passed allowing all adult citizens to vote.
Amendment XV. The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude. (1870). (but the voting rights act of 1965 was key to finally getting African Americans a stronger right to vote).
Amendment XIX. The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex. (1920).
The 19th amendment was passed in 1920 - so half of US citizens were not allowed to vote until relatively recently. My grandmother was denied the right to vote until that amendment passed. That history is probably part of why my mother was one of the most ardent feminists who I've ever known. She's the one who slapped the text of Title IX on the table at Little League registration when the poor man running the sign-up desk told her that "no girls were allowed" and therefore I wasn't allowed to join. After my mother was finished with her persuasive rampage, I was on a Little League team.
She continued to champion the rights of girls during my entire middle school, high school, and collegiate athletic career. She questioned any inequities between the boys' and girls' programs. She led fund-raising efforts to try to take girls sports to new heights. I now look back in wonder at her courage to speak up and fight for what she believed was right - even when her feminism was looked down upon by some people in the conservative area where we lived. I was shaped by my mother in many important ways - and I'd like to think that my independent thinking is one of them.
I find it astounding that it took almost a century before we had a woman as the nominee for president of a major party. No matter what your views or how flawed our candidates may be, this is an historic election. I hope that all of us exercise our precious right to vote.
Fortunately for me, our state sends mail-in ballots to everyone so I voted by mail more than a week ago when my head wasn't pounding from a migraine like it is today. Research into migraines is one of the many areas where some people believe that gender discrimination still dominates. Maladies that mainly affect women's health tend to get less research funding than other diseases.
I am nervous today, as I expect that most of my US readers are. Let's all hold up the ideals of democracy, no matter how this election turns out. Peaceful transfer of power after an election is one of those ideals. And, learning to compromise with others who hold differing views is another.
|R gave his little sister a reassuring nuzzle this morning|