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Entries in suffragettes (1)


Lest We Forget

IronJawedAngels.jpgIron Jawed Angels is an HBO film that every human being should see. It's the story of the group of women who, in the early 1900s, picked up the decades-long battle for a constitutional amendment giving women in the U.S. the right to vote. It's a story of courage and conviction beyond anything most of us could ever imagine having today. Courage and conviction that I dare hope are on their way back in as we work to restore our nation.

The film was shot in my home state of Virginia and features a female director, female scriptwriter, plus some really fresh, creative editing and a fantastic music score. Share it with your mother and sister and daughter and niece. 

Bottom line, Iron Jawed Angels  is about the basic rights we deserve as human beings. That there really is just one human being and that one being just happens to take many different paths.

Hilary Swank, who portrays lead suffragette Alice Paul in the film, sums it up in one scene where she is asked by a psychologist to "explain her movement."

You ask me to explain myself?

I just wonder what needs to be explained.

It should be very clear.

Look into your own heart.

I swear to you, mine's no different.

You want a place in the trades and professions where you can earn your bread?

So do I.

You want the means of self-expression, some way of satisfying your own personal ambitions?

So do I.

You want a voice in the government under which you live?

So do I.

What is there to explain?

Synchronistically enough, Senator Hllary Clinton talked about these same suffragettes in her campaign-closing speech this past Saturday. She reminded all of us that we must not forget the sacrifices of those women before us and we must not take for granted the freedoms we enjoy because of those sacrifices.

Seeing a film like this gives me hope that this incredible strength and wish for something better is still inside all of us -- the best possible "sleeping giant" to be awakened.