In the 19th century, American and British women’s rights - or lack of them depended heavily on the commentaries of William Blackstone (Commentaries on the Laws of England, Vol. 1 (2765)) which defined a married woman and man as one person under the law.( http://womenshistory.about.com/cs/lives19th/a/blackstone_law.htm) Women were treated as their husband’s property without any legal rights. This general practice is still true in different parts of the world. Today, women still don’t have voting rights and are taken for granted in many parts of the world. In March 29, 2011, the head of the electoral committee of the Arab government said the kingdom was not ready to allow women to vote. “We are not ready for the participation of women in these municipal elections,” said Abdulrahman al-Dahmash, while at the same time renewing promises that authorities would llow women to take part ‘in the next ballot’.( http://bigpondnews.com/articles/World/2011/03/29/Saudi_Arabia_not_ready_for_women_voting_594674.html) This promise could be the same as tomorrow never comes.
Women in the United States have many people to thank for the voting rights that are available today, One of the women that helped establish a strong movement to demand rights for women was Susan B. Anthony,
Susan B. Anthony was a great influence for the improvement in the lives of women throughout history to the present. Susan B. Anthony devoted a lifetime to the cause of women’s rights.( http://womenshistory.about.com/cs/lives19th/a/blackstone_law.htm) Although, she never held political office, Susan B. Anthony might be considered our nation’s first great female politician. She began to focus on suffrage as the key to achieving a better place for women in society. Although Susan B. Anthony didn’t live to see her ultimate goal of a women suffrage amendment added to the U.S. Constitution (that would come in 1920, fourteen years after her death), she contributed as much as anyone to the substantial improvement in the legal position of women during the nineteenth century. For her generation, she was “Aunt Susan,” the crusader who devoted a lifetime of tireless work to the cause of women’s rights.( http://law2.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/anthony/sbabiog.html)
Susan B. Anthony was born on February 15, 1820, to a devoted Quaker family. The Anthonys stressed to their six children the need for every person to strive their best to make a contribution to the world. For their part, Susan’s parents devoted themselves to the causes of abolitionism and temperance, two causes that Susan would also champion.( http://law2.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/anthony/sbabiog.html)
In September, 1852, Susan B. Anthony attended her first women’s rights convention in Syracuse, NY. She began using suffrage to make a better place for women in society. She became convinced, in her own words,” that the right women needed above every other…was the right of suffrage.” She began to regularly attend lecture circuits and legislative halls. In 1854, she traveled to all fifty-four of New York’s counties to promote women suffrage and her other concerns of abolition and temperance.( http://law2.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/anthony/sbabiog.html )
During 1871-1872 Susan B. Anthony lectured extensively traveling from Washington, D.C. to California to Washington, D.C. at the annual National Women Association convention. For half a century she toured constantly promoting women’s rights. Susan B. Anthony used logic and humor to win debates. One time a professor in Bloomington, Indiana, said women should not have the right to vote because they could not fight. Susan B. looked at the young man, who was of small stature. She answered, “The professor talks about the physical disabilities of women, why, I could take him in my arms and lift him on and off this platform as easily as a mother would…