The 1920s were essential to the equality movement for women. The 19th Amendment passed in 1920 extending the right to vote to women. Last Friday marked the 1971 anniversary of the Women’s rights movement. This movement first took shape in the 1920s and has been empowering women ever since.
However, voting was just a first step. Advocates for more rights for women wanted equal rights under the U.S. Constitution. Alice Paul was the creator of the Equal Rights Amendment. The nephew of Susan B. Anthony, Daniel R. Anthony, showed support for this amendment.
Unfortunately, the proposal did not pass since some women saw it as controversial. At the time, the impact on labor legislation and dangerous working conditions was unclear.
Activists and legislators alike continued to push for the Equal Rights Amendment for the next 49 years. It only passed in 1972 when regulators sent it across all American states, for ratification.
More recently, Congress saw it reintroduced in May 2015. Democrat Carolyn Maloney took on that responsibility. She declared that one hundred years later, women should achieve full equality under the law.
President Obama recently inaugurated a new Equality Monument which is a testimony of the fight for equal rights for women. The equal rights issue looks completely different from what it used to be 90 years ago.
For instance, modern issues connected to women’s rights are women involved in the army and education on these matters.
Hopefully, statistics show some progress on equal rights for women, such as their fairer share of the labor force and the improvements of the salary gap. But after a boom in employment and pay rise for women during the eighties and nineties, now things seem to be stalling.
Equal Rights at Home and Work
Upon a closer look, women are perceived as equals at home and in the workplace. Many women nowadays out-earn their spouses. More and more men understand that they should, too contribute to house chores and child raising.
Fathers who stay at home and wives who are the main source of income for the family are still in the minority. But fewer people believe traditional roles fit everyone.
Women now dominate higher education and this correlates to them being in higher positions of management.
The evolving attitudes mean that behavior is improving. There are fewer sexual assault or sexism reports compared to a decade ago. It’s also easier for women to speak out. Although it’s still difficult for women to assert themselves, their actions are more likely to succeed.
More Needs to be Done
There is a long way to go in this respect. For example, legislating paid family leave could make policies in tune with a changing society.
Furthermore, business should adapt to their workers’ needs. This means making a clear effort to close the gap in pay. Discrimination of other qualified women or minorities is also an issue.
The human rights battle is nowhere as obvious as it is in the presidential race. While Hillary Clinton says she’s been bringing down barriers her entire life, Donald Trump’s supporters believe that women should not be gender-convinced into voting one candidate or the other.
Others argue that, despite his comments, Trump has enabled women to have independent voices.
Image Source – Wikipedia