The Importance Of Temperance And Women's Suffrage

804 Words 4 Pages
In the early and mid nineteenth century, two prominent reform movements were Temperance and Women’s Suffrage. Two passionate reform leaders were Lyman Beecher and Elizabeth Stanton. Lyman Beecher was an adamant supporter of temperance, whereas Elizabeth Stanton focused predominantly on women’s rights. Stanton’s ends for Women’s suffrage had a stronger impact on our society today than Temperance because, although not perfect, it produced lasting results. Lyman Beecher used both the government and an appeal people’s morals to reach his goal of temperance. One example of his appeal to his followers’ morals was that he preached that intemperance is an inexcusable sin, in his sermons. “No sin has fewer apologies than intemperance.” (Beecher 45) …show more content…
Her piece, Address on Women’s Rights, was a perfect example of her ability to disprove points made against women and prove that they are equal to men. A common belief among the people of her time period was that women were intellectually, physically and morally inferior. Stanton impugns these statements by proving how women are actually equivalent or potentially superior to men in these aspects. Stanton prefaces her points with the statement, “Man’s superiority cannot be a question until we have had a fair child.” (Stanton 54) She explains that man’s superiority is superficial and until women have access to the same opportunities men have (education, jobs, etc) will men be able to truly prove their superiority. Nevertheless, she is still able to prove woman’s superiority with reasoning for each topic. She uses the Bible story, “Adam and Eve” to prove a woman’s intellect as Eve was not as easily persuaded to eat the apple of knowledge as Adam was. Eve, a woman, needed ample reasoning, whereas Adam “stopped not so much as to ask if the apple was sweet or sour.” (Stanton 54) Stanton explains that physical strength depends on one’s will. It is possible that a powerful willed girl may win a fight against a weak willed man. Lastly, Stanton believes that women are morally superior to men because they are taught from young to be dainty, kind, caring, and a great mother; while men aren’t raised under the same morals. Men coming home intoxicated is looked on as normal or slightly troubling. If a woman comes home intoxicated, her reputation may be ruined. Disproving the three main points made against women gave Stanton leverage over her adversaries and eventually led to the 19th Amendment in 1920, which was one step closer to Stanton’s end of perfect

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