Shirley Chisholm was born in 1924 in Brooklyn, New York. She was the first African American to run for president but she was the first African American to be elected to the U. S. Congress. Chisholm was a strong supporter of equal rights for women and delivered her speech, “Equal Rights for Women,” in Washington, D. C. on May 21st, 1969. Chisholm was outspoken on issues in America’s society; such as, women’s issues and the discrimination of blacks and women.
In her speech, “Equal Rights for Women,” she remarked that she had experienced much more discrimination as a woman than an African American. Shirley pushed for the Equal Rights Amendment to the U. S. constitution because she wanted to insure women their rights in society and increase their roles in society as well. “Equal Rights for Women” by Shirley Chisholm is personally significant to me because Chisholm fought for the rights of women in the 20th century and worked to increase their role in society.
Today, we women would not have as many rights and opportunities that we do now if someone did not fight for us in the past as Chisholm and many others before us did. Although there is some discrimination involving women today, it is surely not as bad as it was just about 45 years ago. In earlier times, women fought for their rights but now, we don’t have to fight for our rights simply because women like Shirley Chisholm worked to give us our rights we have today and increase our roles in society.
The unspoken assumption is that women are different. They do not have executive ability, orderly minds, stability, leadership skills, and they are too emotional. It has been observed that society discriminated against another minority, the blacks, on the same basis for a long time – that they were different and that they were inferior. As a black person, I am no stranger to race prejudice.
But the truth is that in the political world I have been far oftener discriminated against because I am a woman than because I am black. More than half of the population of the United States is female. But women occupy only two percent of the managerial positions. Considering that there are about 3 1/2 million more women in the United States than men, this situation is outrageous. Men and women need these things equally.