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We are Human Beings

December 20, 1870 — Founding meeting, South Carolina Woman’s Rights Association, Columbia SC

 

It had been so universally the custom to treat the idea of woman suffrage with ridicule and merriment that it becomes necessary in submitting the subject for earnest deliberation that we assure the gentlemen present that our claim is made honestly and seriously.

We ask suffrage not as a favor, not as a privilege, but as a right based on the ground that we are human beings, and as such entitled to all human rights. While we concede that woman’s ennobling influence should be confined chiefly to home and society, we claim that public opinion has had a tendency to limit woman’s sphere to too small a circle, and until woman has the right of representation this will last and other rights will be held by an insecure tenure.

 

 

Source: Republican (Charleston)

 

Also: History of Woman Suffrage, Vol. III, ed. Matilda Joslyn Gage, Ida Husted Harper (Rochester, Charles Mann) 1881, p. 828.