August 26 is Women's Equality Day. It commemorates a long struggle -- in some senses not yet done -- to establish the right of women to equality. In particular, it commemorates the achievement of women's right to vote in the United States, in the 19th Amendment certified on August 26, 1920. The date and nomenclature were passed by a Joint Resolution of Congress in 1971. On occasion, the date comes with a presidential proclamation (see here) and in 2020, I assume, it will come with loads of celebrations including those in upstate NY itself.
Begun, according to some powerful (though of mixed truthfulness) tales, with the Declaration of Sentiments, penned in upstate New York, and actually conceived before then in several other places, the work to gain the "elective franchise" took many decades. It has been challenged in recent years -- by increased scrutiny of voters, for example, and by uneven use of the vote, not to mention the many ways that court decisions leading to a variety of funding sources for those seeking election, the role of the media, and much more. And yet, we have it. We can use it. And this is in large measure the day to celebrate it -- although, like all such "holidays" it ought remind us to celebrate and use it every day.
As we do so, we can also celebrate part of Shimer's history, as we know that one or both of our founders, Frances Wood and Cinderella Gregory, were involved in that effort in upstate NY to achieve the right to vote. Hurrah!
And, this does have to do with liberal education, folks, because the rights of women include the right to education, including a liberal education. What was once the education of "gentlemen" was critiqued and changed as well as women's right to what the authors of the Declaration of Sentiments called "the elective franchise."