A B C D E F
G H I J K L M 

Total read books on site:
more than 10 000

You can read its for free!


Text on one page: Few Medium Many
Stanton, Mrs. Gage, to appear upon a public
platform? Who is willing to shut the pulpit against Mrs. Mott,
when she has filled it with such acceptance, in so many places,
and on so many occasions? Step by step, woman has advanced toward
her right position. Step by step, as she advanced, she has proved
her right, to the satisfaction of caviling skepticism itself....

She would now go a step further. She demands the rights, not of
womanhood, but of humanity. And I feel just as confident that
what she demands will be conceded, in reference to her political
rights, as that it has been conceded with regard to these other
rights, which are now settled in the estimation of thinking and
reasoning people. The tide sets that way, clearly and strongly.
Kansas is not to go alone, in granting this right to woman. The
agitation is to go on; and the more you resist the current of
events, the more earnestly will the agitation be continued until
reason shall be convinced; until prejudice shall be overcome by
the power of conviction; until men are constrained, from very
shame, to withdraw from a position which no argument, no
experience can justify, which no consideration of decency will
palliate.

One objection to our claim is, that the right of voting should
not belong to human beings as individuals, but rather to
households of human beings. This is not a denial of equality in
all respects, but an allegation that the right belongs neither to
the man nor to the woman, but to the household; and that for the
household, as its representative, the man casts the ballot.
Suppose I concede that, what then? Why should the head of the
household, or rather the _hand_ of the household, be masculine
rather than feminine? We have heard the argument over and over
again that woman should leave to man the counting-house, the
work-bench, and all the duties supposed peculiarly to appertain
to masculine humanity, and should attend to "household" matters.
If, then, suffrage is a household matter, why should not woman
attend to it, in her feminine capacity, as peculiarly within her
domestic province, and relieve man from the interruption of his
appropriate duties?

Rev. Mr. RAY inquired what was the basis for the right of
suffrage, if suffrage was not, as Mr. Burleigh had said yesterday
in another place, a natural right. If it does not belong to the
individual whence does it come? The Sultan of Turkey may claim
that the right belongs to him, and that he may delegate that
right to whomsoever he will to assist him in the government of
the people. But in a Republic the right must be in the
individual; and if so, it belongs to woman as well as to man, to
black as well as to white persons. If the right of suffrage is
not a natural right, why has not the Constitutional Convention
about to meet the right to limit the suffrage, if they think it
will secure the best interest of the State?

FRANCES D. GAGE said: I have but little to say because it is
almost two o'clock, and hungry and weary people are not good
listeners to speeches. I shall confine my remarks therefore to
one special point brought up this morning and not fully
discussed. Sojourner Truth gave us the whole truth in about
fifteen words: "If I am responsible for the deeds done in my
body, the same as the white male citizen is, I have a right to
all the rights he has to help him through the world." I shall
speak for the slave woman at the South. I have always lifted my
voice for her when I have spoken at all. I will not give up the
slave woman into the hands of man, to do with her as he pleases
hereafter. I know the plea that was made to me in South Carolina,
and down in the Mississippi valley. They said, "You give us a
nominal freedom, but you leave us under the heel of our husbands,
who are tyrants almost equal to our masters." The former slave
man of the South has learned his lesson of oppression and wrong
of his old master; and they think the wife has no right to her
earnings. I was often asked, "Why don't the Government pay my
wife's earnings to me?" When acting for the Freedman's Aid
Society, the orders came to us to compel marriage, or to separate
families. I issued the order as I was bound to do, as General
Superintendent of the Fourth Division under General Saxton. The
men came to me and wanted to be married, because they said if
they were married in the church, they could manage the women, and
take care of their money, but if they were not married in the
church the women took their own wages and did just as they had a
mind to. But the women came to me and said, "We don't want to be
married in the church, because if we are our husbands will whip
the children and whip us if they want to; they are no better than
old masters." The biggest quarrel I had with the colored people
down there, was with a plantation man because I would not furnish
a nurse for his child. "No, Nero," said I, "I can not hire a
nurse for your child while Nancy works in the cotton field." "But
what is we to do? I'se a poor miserable man and can't work half
the time, and Nancy is a good strong hand; and we must have a
nurse." He went away in utter disgust, and declared to the people
outside that I had got the miserablest notion he had ever heard,
to spoil a good field hand like his Nancy to nurse her own baby.

We were told the other day by Wendell Phillips, upon the
Anti-Slavery platform, that it takes people forty years to
outgrow an old idea. The slave population of the South is not yet
removed a hundred years from the barbarism of Africa, where women
have no rights, no privileges, but are trampled under foot in all
the savageism of the past. And the slave man has looked on to see
his master will everything as he willed, and he has learned the
lesson from his master. Mr. Higginson told us that the
slave-master never understood the slave. I know that to be the
fact. Neither does man understand woman to-day, because she has
always been held subservient to him. Now it is proposed to give
manhood the suffrage in all these Southern States, and to leave
the poor slave woman bound under the ban of the direst curse of
slavery to him who is the father of her children. It is decreed
upon all the statute books of slavery, that the child shall
follow the condition of the mother. That has been the decree from
the beginning of this awful slave system; that the whitest woman,
the child of a slave mother, whose hair curled down to her waist,
and whose blue eyes of beauty were a lure to the statesmen of the
South, should be a slave, though the Governor of the State were
her father. Are you to leave her there yet, and desecrate
marriage, by making it such a bond of slavery that the woman
shall say, "I do not want to be married, to suffer oppression!"
Are you to force prostitution and wrong upon those people by
these unjust laws? Are you to compel wickedness and crime? Are
you going to let it stand upon the statute books of the Southern
States that the only woman free to work for her own child shall
be the mother of illegitimate children? That is the consequence
of what you are doing to the people who in all time past, since
they have lived upon this continent, have been denied the right
of sacred marriage; and who must have, as Wendell Phillips tells
us, forty years to outgrow the past, or to educate them.

We are told by Mr. Phillips to flood the South with
spelling-books. Who is to carry them there? Who, to-day, is
teaching the Southern people;--for I am talking now in behalf of
the colored woman of the South, forgetting my own degradation.
Who have carried the spelling-book to the South? The women of the
North, gathering up their strength, have been sent down by all
these great societies to teach. The colored men of the South are
to vote, while they deny the ballot to their teacher! It is said
that women do not want to vote in this country. I tell you, it is
a libel upon womanhood. I care not who says it. I am in earnest.
They do want to vote. Fifty-two thousand pulpits in this country
have been teaching women the lesson that has been taught them for
centuries, that they must not think about voting. But when 52,000
pulpits, or 52,000 politicians, at the beginning of this war,
lifted up their voices and asked of women, "Come out and help
us," did they stand back? In every hamlet, in every village, in
every cabin, and every palace, in every home in the whole United
States, they rose up and went to work. They worked for the
Government; they worked for the nation; they worked for their
sons, their husbands, their fathers, their brothers, their
friends. They worked night and day. Who found women to stand back
when this great public opinion that had been crushing them so
long and forbidding them to work, at last lifted itself up and
said, "You may work"? (Applause).

I have been traveling all winter long, with a few intervals of
rest, talking not upon Equal Rights, but upon the subject of
Temperance; and whenever I said to my crowded audiences that we
must give to woman the right to vote that she may purify the
nation of this great sin, there went up shouts and clapping of
hands of men and women. They are ready for this work. What we
want is to crystallize the public opinion of all ranks of society
in its favor. There is great fear that if woman is allowed to
vote, she will lose something of her high and excellent
character.



Pages: | Prev | | 1 | | 2 | | 3 | | 4 | | 5 | | 6 | | 7 | | 8 | | 9 | | 10 | | 11 | | 12 | | 13 | | 14 | | 15 | | 16 | | 17 | | 18 | | 19 | | 20 | | 21 | | 22 | | 23 | | 24 | | 25 | | 26 | | 27 | | 28 | | 29 | | 30 | | 31 | | 32 | | 33 | | 34 | | 35 | | 36 | | 37 | | 38 | | 39 | | 40 | | 41 | | 42 | | 43 | | 44 | | 45 | | 46 | | 47 | | 48 | | 49 | | 50 | | 51 | | 52 | | 53 | | 54 | | 55 | | 56 | | 57 | | 58 | | 59 | | 60 | | 61 | | 62 | | 63 | | 64 | | 65 | | 66 | | 67 | | 68 | | 69 | | 70 | | 71 | | 72 | | 73 | | 74 | | 75 | | 76 | | 77 | | 78 | | 79 | | 80 | | 81 | | 82 | | 83 | | 84 | | 85 | | 86 | | 87 | | 88 | | 89 | | 90 | | 91 | | 92 | | 93 | | 94 | | 95 | | 96 | | 97 | | 98 | | 99 | | 100 | | 101 | | 102 | | 103 | | 104 | | 105 | | 106 | | 107 | | 108 | | 109 | | 110 | | 111 | | 112 | | 113 | | 114 | | 115 | | 116 | | 117 | | 118 | | 119 | | 120 | | 121 | | 122 | | 123 | | 124 | | 125 | | 126 | | 127 | | 128 | | 129 | | 130 | | 131 | | 132 | | 133 | | 134 | | 135 | | 136 | | 137 | | 138 | | 139 | | 140 | | 141 | | 142 | | 143 | | 144 | | 145 | | 146 | | 147 | | 148 | | 149 | | 150 | | 151 | | 152 | | 153 | | 154 | | 155 | | 156 | | 157 | | 158 | | 159 | | 160 | | 161 | | 162 | | 163 | | 164 | | 165 | | 166 | | 167 | | 168 | | 169 | | 170 | | 171 | | 172 | | 173 | | 174 | | 175 | | 176 | | 177 | | 178 | | 179 | | 180 | | 181 | | 182 | | 183 | | 184 | | 185 | | 186 | | 187 | | 188 | | 189 | | 190 | | 191 | | 192 | | 193 | | 194 | | 195 | | 196 | | 197 | | 198 | | 199 | | 200 | | 201 | | 202 | | 203 | | 204 | | 205 | | 206 | | 207 | | 208 | | 209 | | 210 | | 211 | | 212 | | 213 | | 214 | | 215 | | 216 | | 217 | | 218 | | 219 | | 220 | | 221 | | 222 | | 223 | | 224 | | 225 | | 226 | | 227 | | 228 | | 229 | | 230 | | 231 | | 232 | | 233 | | 234 | | 235 | | 236 | | 237 | | 238 | | 239 | | 240 | | 241 | | 242 | | 243 | | 244 | | 245 | | 246 | | 247 | | 248 | | 249 | | 250 | | 251 | | 252 | | 253 | | 254 | | 255 | | 256 | | 257 | | 258 | | 259 | | 260 | | 261 | | 262 | | 263 | | 264 | | 265 | | 266 | | 267 | | 268 | | 269 | | 270 | | 271 | | 272 | | 273 | | 274 | | 275 | | 276 | | 277 | | 278 | | 279 | | 280 | | 281 | | 282 | | 283 | | 284 | | 285 | | 286 | | 287 | | 288 | | 289 | | 290 | | 291 | | 292 | | 293 | | 294 | | 295 | | 296 | | 297 | | 298 | | 299 | | 300 | | 301 | | 302 | | 303 | | 304 | | 305 | | 306 | | 307 | | 308 | | 309 | | 310 | | 311 | | 312 | | 313 | | 314 | | 315 | | 316 | | 317 | | 318 | | 319 | | 320 | | 321 | | 322 | | 323 | | 324 | | 325 | | 326 | | 327 | | 328 | | 329 | | 330 | | 331 | | 332 | | 333 | | 334 | | 335 | | 336 | | 337 | | 338 | | 339 | | 340 | | 341 | | 342 | | 343 | | 344 | | 345 | | 346 | | 347 | | 348 | | 349 | | 350 | | 351 | | 352 | | 353 | | 354 | | 355 | | 356 | | 357 | | 358 | | 359 | | 360 | | Next |

N O P Q R S T
U V W X Y Z 

Your last read book:

You dont read books at this site.