Book Trailer The Noble Train

Monday, January 16, 2017

The Historical Significance of the Womens March

Alice Paul endured an  insane asylum and being force fed after being imprisoned. She headed up the National Organization of Women and believed the only way women would get the vote was through direct confrontation with the  men who held power. The President Woodrow Wilson and his young new wife Edith motored through the White House gates while suffragettes chained themselves to the gates and laid down in front of the presidential limousine. Wilson believed in state control of the vote and didn't think the Federal government should get involved.

Alice Paul would not be ignored. She managed to get arrested along with other women and ended up in prison. The President offered a pardon and they refused. A hunger strike began with Alice leading the way. Wilson began to lose the public relations battle when Paul became very ill and wealthy women began to join the picket line. Force feeding commenced but still Paul would not give up. The commitment to an insane asylum only hurt the presidents case.

Paul was released and Wilson eventually ended up asking congress to pass legislation giving the vote to women. It failed but the ball had started rolling and in 1921 women got the vote. And now women are marching to protest another president. This one wants to set women's rights back fifty years. The use of protest and creating dis-ease was Alice Pauls favorite tactic. She could relate to the women gearing up for the 21st.

Madam President The Secret Presidency of Edith Wilson

Books by William Hazelgrove