Struggling for our rights.

Essay by blondeskickbuttHigh School, 10th grade June 2003

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Even before the New World was named America, women worked alongside men to build it. Unfortunately, women were regarded everywhere as inferior to men, both mentally and physically. Women make up 53% of the population. They were the largest group struggling against discrimination. Women were excluded from things such as high school and college education, voting, and everyday rights.

In the 1820's women began to take a stand for what they believed in. A women's rights convention was held in New York, in July 1848. They adopted a Declaration of Sentiments, which said, "All men and women are created equal." Dedicated women opened schools for girls. Soon enough, colleges allowed women to attend. With just one difference, things slowly began to change. Women began to write, graduated from medical schools, and change the things that they did not agree with in America.

In the 1850's, Amendment number fifteen was passed.

It stated that "The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or any state on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude." Women expected to be included in this amendment, but they were not. Women were also excluded from the fourteenth amendment. It forbade states to deprive citizens of the rights of life, liberty, and property. It also made black Americans citizens of the United States. After several suffrage movements, amendment number nineteen was passed. It extended the right to vote to all qualified women.

The struggle for equal rights was aided by the Civil Rights Act of 1964. It banned discrimination based on gender in employment. Legal suits were filed against businesses and colleges. They were charged with gender discrimination in hiring, pay, and promotion practices. Sooner or later, women entered careers in...