Your voice and your ideas matter

“Failure is impossible”  Susan B. Anthony

(L to R) Sue Stewart, Ellie, Susan B. Anthony, Emily and Bekah at Women’s Equity Day Luncheon

(L to R) Sue Stewart, Ellie, “Susan B. Anthony” (portrayed by Sally Matson), Emily, and Bekah at Women’s Equity Day Luncheon

Every summer I look forward to attending the Women’s Equity Day Luncheon with sister Girl Scouts and women from across our community to celebrate our right to vote. This year GSGCF was also represented by Girl Scout Seniors Bekah and Emily, Girl Scout Ambassador Ellie, and Girl Scout volunteer Mrs. Cruce. Guest speaker, Sally Matson brought Susan B. Anthony to life as a courageous, strong and resilient woman of her day.

In the mid 1800’s Susan B. Anthony  (1820-1906) was a determined advocate for social justice and equal treatment for all groups. She was part of a large family, was involved in her church, was well read, and held a solid belief in what was right.

Because she was a woman, she was unable to vote. By 1866, she was fighting for equal rights not only for women, but African Americans. She was spit on, called names, fined and faced jail time for her words and deeds.  She fought hard and had many detractors- even within her circle.

Susan B. Anthony and her sisters, along with outspoken men of their day, worked against the commonly held beliefs of their time.  They paved the way so that in 1919 Congress passed the Nineteenth Amendment, which was ratified on August 18, 1920.

“The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.”

I take my right to vote seriously and have voted in every election since I was of age. Did you know that women who were Girl Scouts are more likely to vote than women who were not Girl Scouts? (Girl Scout Research Institute)

When I recall that Juliette Gordon Low founded the Girl Scout Movement in 1912- BEFORE WOMEN HAD THE RIGHT TO VOTE- I am further inspired by Juliette and by Susan B. Anthony’s  courage, confidence and character.

So many girls and women have gone before us to fight for justice, equality, and doing what is right for our society and world. They have endured name calling, mistreatment, and like Susan B. Anthony even jail time. They are sisters, daughters, and mothers and they work with women and men to make changes to benefit all.

Sister Girl Scouts….have confidence in you and in what you believe, work together to further the tenets our Girl Scout Promise and Law. Whether big or small, quiet or loud….your voice and your ideas matter.

Author: Susan R. Stewart – CEO Girl Scouts of Gulfcoast FL


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