This week people all over the country marked the 100th anniversary of the 19th amendment. We know that this was only the beginning of a long struggle for equality and justice that is still not complete and that many women were left out of that original celebration. We also know that the 19th amendment, though not perfect, was the result of years of work and sacrifice. Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Lucretia Mott and other women had been denied access to the 1840 Anti-Slavery Convention in London because they were women. So they organize the first Women’s Rights Convention in Seneca Falls, New. Its “Declaration of Sentiments”, demanded that the rights of women as individuals be acknowledged and respected by society, and launched the movement that became the 19th amendment. Only one teenager from the Seneca Falls convention lived to cast a vote 72 years later. But many, including Jeannette Rankin planted seeds and nurtured the work along the way. And it is likely that many grew discouraged as the years passed without sight of their goal. But collectively, each seed, each word, each action moved us forward. And we know the journey is far from over. Whether it is women’s rights, racial justice, anti-war activism or climate action, the work is a lifetime journey and it is up to each of us to carry our unique part.
Join me in celebrating all the lifetimes, past, present and future that step up to the moment and carry us forward…Betsy