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Living the Legacy The Womens Rights Movement 1848 - 1998 Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world Indeed its the only thing that ever has That was Margaret Meads conclusion after a lifetime of observing very diverse cultures around the world Her insight has been borne out time and again throughout the development of this country of ours Being allowed to live life in an atmosphere of religious freedom having a voice in the government you support with your taxes living free of lifelong enslavement by another person These beliefs about how life should and must be lived were once considered outlandish by many But these beliefs were fervently held by visionaries whose steadfast work brought about changed minds and attitudes Now these beliefs are commonly shared across US society Another initially outlandish idea that has come to pass United States citizenship for women 1998 marks the 150th Anniversary of a movement by women to achieve full civil rights in this country Over the past seven generations dramatic social and legal changes have been accomplished that are now so accepted that they go unnoticed by people whose lives they have utterly changed Many people who have lived through the recent decades of this process have come to accept blithely what has transpired And younger people for the most part can hardly believe life was ever otherwise They take the changes completely in stride as how life has always been The staggering changes for women that have come about over those seven generations in family life in religion in government in employment in education - these changes did not just happen spontaneously Women themselves made these changes happen very deliberately Women have not been the passive recipients of miraculous changes in laws and human nature Seven generations of women have come together
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