The month of March is when we celebrate the diversity and the never surrender attitude of women. Women have overcome a lot in the past century to get where they are today and they are still not there yet. Sure, they have the right to vote, a right to education, a right to work, but there are so many glass ceilings that they have yet to break through. Women are gaining ground more and more each day though as we see more women in the workplace and in leadership roles in the workplace and in the political arena than we have in the past.
Womenís History Month can be traced back to March 8, 1857 when in New York City, women staged protests about unsafe working conditions. In 1909 we had International Womenís Day and finally in 1981, Congress established National Womenís History Week to be observed during the second week of March. It wasnít until six years later in 1987 when Congress was nice enough to give women a whole month to celebrate their accomplishments. I say that with a bit of snark-iness because as far as I am concerned, there is room every month to celebrate the diversity and the accomplishments of women. There could be a women scientist month, a women teacher month, a women inventor month, and mothers. We cannot forget about those women who work twenty-four hours a day, the mother. Mothers definitely deserve more than a day. They deserve a whole month, if not a whole year.
I can go on and on about mothers but this article is to celebrate the diversity and change of all women. Letís take a look at some important events in the life of women.
Thanks to such women as Carrie Nation, Sojourner Truth, Elizabeth Cady Staton, Susan B. Anthony and others, women received the right to vote in 1920 when the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was voted in by Congress. Well, before that, in 1839, Mississippi was the first state to allow married women to own their own property, in their own names, separate from their husbands.
In 1872, Victoria Woodhull became the first woman presidential candidate and ran under the Equal Rights Party. In 1916 Jeannette Rankin of Montana becomes the first woman elected to Congress. In 1932, Hattie Caraway of Arkansas becomes the first women elected to the Senate. Also in 1932, Amelia Earhart became the first woman to fly a plane solo across the Atlantic Ocean. In 1938, Fair Labor Standards Act establishes the minimum wage without regard to gender. In1968 Shirley Chisolm became the first African-American Congresswoman and in 1972 was not only the first African-American to run for president but was the first woman to do it under a national party. The Democratic Party. Shirley Chisolm failed in her bid to win the presidency but did stay on to serve seven terms in Congress.
Women certainly come a long way from the days of being subservient to becoming key players in the changes of the world today but still have further to go to show that they are equal to and better than some of their male counterparts and if they continue on this roll, then pretty soon all glass ceilings will not only be broken, but they will be shattered.