Be Heard. Be Counted.
By Lynn Branigan
November is here.
In this month of midterm elections – and the month during which our country elects a president every four years – I’m drawn to a relatively recent moment in our history when women were first given the right to vote. The 19th Amendment was certified in August of 1920 and 8 million women voted for the first time on November 2 of that year. She Runs It had already been in existence for eight years as Advertising Women of New York.
I am in awe of the remarkable women – and men – who fought so hard for so long to give women a seat at the table and a place at the polls. Their work not only inspires me, it also fills me with a sense of obligation to take full advantage of the opportunities and rights they made possible for all of us. I need to vote. We all do.
In this era of #metoo and #timesup and #neveragain, it’s easy to succumb to the sheer exhaustion of trying to change the world or even make a difference. But as I think about the people who, for decades, mobilized, marched, rallied, advocated, petitioned and wrestled for women’s right to vote, I realize I cannot ignore the fundamental right and responsibility they secured.
This isn’t a partisan plea. If you are happy with the path we are traveling: vote to sustain it. If you are not happy, vote to change it. Just vote.
Take inspiration from Carrie Chapman Catt, an activist in the women’s suffrage movement and later the founder of the American League of Women Voters, who said:
“To the wrongs that need resistance, to the right that needs assistance, to the future in the distance, give yourselves.”
See you at the polls!