Women's Suffrage Arguments

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There were some significant changes in the U.S. in the early 1900’s. One change was that the 19th amendment was ratified, resulting in women being guaranteed the right to vote in the U.S. There had been a great amount of debate focusing on whether women should be guaranteed the vote leading up to the ratification. By looking at what leaders of the suffrage movement were saying at the time we can gain insight of what the most significant arguments for the vote were. Although, intuition might tell us that the main argument for suffrage (i.e. women winning the vote) probably revolved around different equality arguments, this was not the case. The three most significant arguments for women’s suffrage were that women deserved suffrage as a reward …show more content…
In 1918, President Woodrow Wilson spoke in front of Congress explaining his reasoning for being in favor of suffrage. Wilson urged that suffrage should be viewed as a war necessity. Wilson said, “…this measure which I urge upon you is vital to the winning of the war and to the energies alike of preparation and of battle” (“Wilson Makes Suffrage Appeal, But Senate Waits.”). Since, women were so helpful with the war, it was imperative that there was nothing that would stop them from continuing with their support. Hence, by giving women the vote, it would reward them for helping and it would provide incentive for continuing their hard work. In a letter to a Senator, Wilson wrote, “… action on this amendment will have an important and immediate influence upon the whole atmosphere and morale of the nations engaged in the war” (“Wilson Makes Suffrage Appeal, But Senate Waits.”). In other words, the passing of the amendment would raise spirits, which would help with the war. Although, Wilson technically did not have any power with passing the 19th amendment, he did have a great deal of influence on public perception. Therefore, everything that Wilson said was important and he was considered a leader for the movement. The argument that suffrage would help with the war was significant because everyone in the U.S. wanted to be victorious so it was difficult to create a counter-argument to anything that could

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