"The young women of today, free to study, to speak, to write, to choose their occupation, should remember that every inch of this freedom was bought for them at a great price. It is for them to show their gratitude by helping onward the reforms of their own times, by spreading the light of freedom and of truth still wider. The debt that each generation owes to the past it must pay to the future,” Abigail Scott Duniway, Original Suffragette, 1834-1915
The New Suffragettes are a local group of women’s rights supporters who came together earlier this summer following the reversal of Roe v. Wade. Knowing that the mission of the original suffragettes to secure women’s right to vote is as important as ever before, the New Suffragettes have taken to public spaces and community events across the greater Chattanooga area recently to help voter registration drives leading up to this week’s National Voter Registration Day on Sept. 20. These efforts will continue as Tennessee citizens anticipate the upcoming election on Tuesday, Nov. 8, and the opportunity to have a say about the kind of world they want to live in.
The 2020 Presidential Election certainly set the example for what can happen when voters get engaged and take their right to vote and their duty as citizens seriously. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the 2020 Presidential Election had the highest voter turnout of the 21st century.
In an article published on Voice of America, Claire Gothreau, a research associate at the Center for American Women and Politics at Rutgers University said, “[Women] registered and voted at higher rates than men in every presidential election since 1980. They outnumber men, at least in the past couple of elections, by about 10 million. So, even though men outpaced women in terms of some other forms of political engagement like donating and running for office, the fact that women outvote men is meaningful.”
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 2020 voter turnout was 68.4 percent for women and 65.0 percent for men. Voters, and especially women voters, play an important role in determining the course of local, state, and federal government leadership and ultimately policy issues. While 61 percent of Americans say abortion should be legal, the vote has not gone to the people, as of yet. In the meantime, though, the people do vote for who will represent them on the local, state, and federal levels and that vote matters more now than ever before, especially among women voters, as the statistics show. Using the power of their vote, women have the opportunity to stand on the right side of history and to vote for the kind of world they want to live in and the kind of future they want to leave their daughters and granddaughters for generations to come.
If you are interested in learning more about or getting involved with the New Suffragettes, you can send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and someone will reach out to you.