Many Women didnt Want it. This rationale swayed many a male legislator. It is true that at times even well educated women in countries with high percentages of female illiteracy joined men who claimed that as long as the majority of women were still illiterate and ignorant, it would be dangerous to extend them the vote. The anti-suffrage groups in the U.S., for example, were mainly led by women.
Conservative Kuwait lawmakers recently blocked womens vote by arguing that giving women would essentially double womens power. Citing claims that Islam and Kuwaiti custom bar women from holding office, the head of the Parliaments human rights committee in May, 2005, said that men are technically the head of the nation here.
The strength of the 19th/early 20th century struggle for womens suffrage was its transnational nature. Cooperation between women of various nations gave each the resources they needed to overcome their marginalisation in the politics of their own nations. In the later decades of the 19th century, the expansion of the telegraph and growth of womens press allowed the discussion about women's status and roles to be communicated from country to country. Improvements in transportation facilitated like-minded women and men to attend international gathering where they met and organized. The momentum of womens suffrage was bolstered by such international movements as:
The International Woman Suffrage Association: The International Woman Suffrage Association, established between 1899 and 1902, held its first meeting in Berlin in 1904. A series of Congresses followed, each with the aim of improving womens rights, and each providing a stimulus for similar transforming movements throughout the world. At the Alliances seventh meeting in Budapest in 1913, euphoria about success was in the air, causing American Carrie Chapman Catt to claim: Our movement has reached the last stage....Parliaments have stopped laughing at woman suffrage, and politicians have begun to dodge!
By the turn of the twentieth century womens reform was truly an international movement, one in which ideas and tactics used in one country served as models for use in another.
The League of Nations and United Nations: The establishment of these international bodies significantly forwarded the goal of universal female suffrage. In 1946 a Commission on Women was established, and the Convention of the Political Rights for Women was adopted in 1952.
Inter-regional and Pan-national Organizations: Region specific coalitions also strengthened individual movements. Although Latin American women participated in several inter-American and European conferences, they had more success when they formed supportive alliances within the South American continent. The first South American International Feminine Congress took place in Buenos Aires in 1910. And, although the 1928 founded Inter-American Commission of Women at first was driven by North American issues, it increasingly geared itself to the needs of Latin American women. By the 1940s, the Commission had become an almost exclusively Latin American organization.
Pan-Pacific womens networks also became effective advocates of womens political equality, as did those within countries with great regional diversity. As an example, women in India by the end of the nineteenth century were forming their own organizations. The first all-India organization, the Womens Indian Association was established in 1917, and by 1918 was holding gatherings all over India in support of womens franchise.
Most Socialists went beyond civic issues to link suffrage to a fundamental challenge to gender relations. German Socialists, for example, demanded sexual emancipation and more control for women within their families as well as the vote. Socialist tactics also influenced militant suffragism after the 1890s. Most effective was a section within the British movement, the Womens Social and Political Union (WSPU), which used aggressive tactics of political confrontation to bring attention to the suffrage cause. Groups in other nations imitated the British, such as the suffragettes in Argentina and the United States. And, in 1912 in Nanking, the Chinese Woman Suffrage Alliance broke windows and stormed the parliament building demanding equality of the sexes and womens right to vote.
Homosexual people in the United States are people that deserve freedom and equality and taking away their right to marriage is taking away their equality with the rest of Americans.
Full suffrage occurs when all groups of women are included in national voting and can run for any political office. In most cases women won the right to vote in uneven stages. New Zealand in 1893 was first. Liberalism was a strong force in this pioneering land which increasingly rejected what it viewed as archaic attitudes from the Old World. The support of social reform issues, including temperance, gave New Zealand suffragists the edge they needed. The now famous Womens Suffrage Petition is credited with being a major force for this success. Signed by close to one quarter of the female adult population, the petition was the largest of its kind in New Zealand and other western countries. It is comprised of 546 sheets of paper, all glued together to form one continuous roll 274 metres long, with the signatures of over 10,000 adult women. A few Maori women signed, but at this time they mainly were concerned with achieving political participation rights for the whole tribe.
The New Zealand breakthrough sent ripples throughout the world. New Zealand women suffrage supporters were invited to many countries to visit, lecture, and even join in demonstrations.