WKU launches Journey to the Vote campaign

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. – June 4, 1919 might not seem like a date that sticks out in a history book.

A closer look will show that this date is one of the most important in American history – the day the United States Senate passed the 19th amendment, granting some women the right to vote.

“Like all American stories and journies, this is one that’s got its ups and downs, its ebs and flows,” said Scott Lasley, a political science professor at Western Kentucky University.

It was a long journey for the women’s suffrage movement to reach that point, but now many are recognizing and celebrating the 100th anniversary of that historic moment, including local and state officials in Kentucky.

“As a woman, I stand here knowing 100 years ago I would not have been able to stand here,” said Kentucky State Rep. Patti Minter. “I would not have been able to participate in the political process in any way that was not informal.”

In recognition of this momentous occasion for women across the United States, WKU launched its “Journey to the Vote” campaign with a special proclamation ceremony at the Kentucky Museum.

“As women, we do take the right to vote for granted in many ways,” said Christy Spurlock, education curator at the Kentucky Museum.

Lasley, Minter and several local Bowling Green city officials addressed a small crowd in the Kentucky Room about why this campaign is important, and what events will take place over the course of the next year to celebrate the passing, and eventual ratification, of the 19th amendment.

The campaign is also aimed at continuing to make strides for women in politics in the future, too.

“The other part of the journey is looking forward,” added Lasley. “Just because women got the right to vote doesn’t mean you snap your fingers and equality automatically arrives.”

For more information about the upcoming events that a part of the campaign, visit: Journey to the Vote.