"Civic Duties Versus The Political Game," Salem Daily Capital Journal, October 16, 1912, 3.
Civic Duties Versus The Political Game
Ida M. Tarbell says one of her chief objections to woman suffrage is that “it will take the attention of women from what I believe to be their real civic duties by interesting them in the political game, when they should be concentrating their attention on specific civic work.”
All right minded women want this work done, but they differ as to the method. The suffragist thinks the ballot the panacea for all ills of society. The anti-suffragist believes that the constant and effective influence now exerted by women on legislation and public affairs is due to the character and intelligence of the women who advocate good causes. A woman now interested in a matter of public welfare is known to be unselfish and to have only the interest of her cause at heart. The same woman under woman suffrage is only one of many political units, with ignorant and indifferent women voters added to the other elements arrayed against her success.
A few women today are idealizing the ballot, while what will really solve Juvenile delinquency intemperance, the white slave traffic, and the social evil is education, education and more education in the homes and from the earliest hour of childhood, and therein lies the civic duty of women, bigger than the casting of any ballot, and absorbing enough to occupy all the women of Oregon for all time.
It is to keep the women of this state out of the ‘political’ game and leave them free for this greatest of all their duties that we ask you to vote against the woman suffrage amendment at the coming election.
The Oregon State Association Opposed to the Extension of the Suffrage to women.
Mrs. Francis James Bailey,
1912 October Permalink