Who is ready to vote!?
I’m so excited today to have the luxury to participate in my countries General Election. I feel as though this privileged I have to exercise my right of freedom and preference is something that I never really took much consideration of. Being involved in politics isn’t mundane and dreary but actually insightful, you can see how people have the power to make everlasting change. The most exciting part? You can be involved.
Of course I’m going to throw it back a few hundred years… It is throw back Thursday after all.
In 1897 I believe, Millicent Fawcett had founded the National Union of Women’s Suffrage. This group would not adhere to political violence or social pressure, the members believed in a peaceful protest. And why shouldn’t they? Britain was undergoing many progressivist reforms so really women suffrage wasn’t to the the most controversial issue? However, this organisation was taken taken as severely as Fawcett had hoped and in 1903, under Emmeline and Christabel Pankhurst I believe, the Suffragettes was formed. This group was far more radical in their method, their frustration with the lack of progression led to disruption of political meetings, burning down of churches, chaining themselves to the Houses of Parliament and even hunger strikes once imprisoned. The suffragettes were subjected to the most awful of treatment, women were scolded for participation in events, violence in trying to break up their demonstrations and beatings and rape were common, I think?
Two of the most important things that stand out to me are
- Cat and mouse: thr treatment of women on the hunger strike who were deceived into freedom and then forced to continue a cycle of former on being reimprisoned
- Emily Davison: in 1913 was crushed at a Derby. This tragedy was supposedly the invitation of a suffragette demonstration and became a martyr for the movement. He death appalled all.
So I just want to take this moment to thank those who fought tirelessly for women to be able to have suffrage, I feel so lucky as I know even in 2015, that women still did not have suffrage in other countries –I will not name and blame- which is surprising to me because we have come so far in terms of fair democracy.
I will be exercising my right to vote today and I have fully educated myself on the manifestos. One misconception of the suffragettes is that they did it so we have the vote… Wrong, these momentous women fought so we could have the choice to vote. I hope all those whom are able to participate in the General Election today do so with good intentions and gratitude.
MAY THE BEST PARTY WIN (my political preference)