Monday, August 25, 2008

Women's Equality Day

Women's Equality day is August 26th. The incomparable Bella Abzug (D-NY) instituted the day to commemorate the anniversary of the 19th Amendment.

Joint Resolution of Congress, 1971
Designating August 26 of each year as Women’s Equality Day

WHEREAS, the women of the United States have been treated as second-class citizens and have not been entitled the full rights and privileges, public or private, legal or institutional, which are available to male citizens of the United States; and

WHEREAS, the women of the United States have united to assure that these rights and privileges are available to all citizens equally regardless of sex; and

WHEREAS, the women of the United States have designated August 26, the anniversary date of the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment, as symbol of the continued fight for equal rights: and

WHEREAS, the women of United States are to be commended and supported in their organizations and activities,

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, that August 26th of each year is designated as Women’s Equality Day, and the President is authorized and requested to issue a proclamation annually in commemoration of that day in 1920, on which the women of America were first given the right to vote, and that day in 1970, on which a nationwide demonstration for women’s rights took place.

From the National Women's History Project:
The observance of Women’s Equality Day not only commemorates the passage of the 19th Amendment, but also calls attention to women’s continuing efforts toward full equality. Workplaces, libraries, organizations, and public facilities now participate with Women’s Equality Day programs, displays, video showings, or other activities.
If you think about what these women did in Seneca Falls, NY it will give you chills: they organized and gathered three hundred men and women to the Seneca Falls Convention on Women at a time when there were no telephones, no cars or public transportation, no electricity or running water, and women were expected to be at home caring for the family. This was the event that crystallized the push for women's suffrage and is truly an amazing accomplishment. It is one that needs to be recognized and celebrated and built upon.

Here's how: take a quiz to test your women's history knowledge; read the Seneca Falls Declaration of Sentiments and Resolutions; register to vote and do it; organize or volunteer for a voter registration drive in your community; sign a petition calling on the presidential candidates to make women's equality a priority; send a Women's Equality day e-card to your friends and families...

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