Women's suffrage in the United Kingdom
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The United Kingdom was fairly late to the party in terms of female suffrage, as it required an entire World War of mulling over before the round and pompous men of government decided that it might just about be acceptable for property owning women over the ripe old age of 30, the age that the Brits believed to mark a slight decrease in irrationality in women, and an ever so minute increase in intelligence. Naturally women who did not own property had no say; a law and a general societal consensus that has preserved itself even to this day.
Many British historians will have you know that the passing of the female suffrage bill came after a period of 'radical changes' and 'paradigm shifts' in the views of British society, though, like most of history, this is a great exaggeration, to compensate for the fact that British history is normally rather uninteresting; in the words of Mahatma Gandhi:
'All I wanted was some fucking salt but the fucking Brits had used it all on their shitty excuse for a cuisine and now I've got people claiming to be my allies setting themselves on fire over this shit like what the fuck Britain.'
In hindsight this quote isn't a perfect illustration of my point, but it might be if I reveal to you that this quote is the most well-known of any in British history. Anyway, to summarise, after the glacial dissipation of the [[[British Empire]], rich old women were given the right to tick a box every few years.
edit Origins and Accomplishments of the NUWSS
The NUWSS, or the National Undoing of Women Stereotypes and Stuff, was a very tame and poorly orchestrated attempt at changing the public's political agenda on the issue. It originated when a few radical and anarchistic women happened to be indulging in two of their favourite pleasures simultaneously: sitting around a table wearing grand floral dresses choking tea down their corset-constricted throats, and discussing the issue of female suffrage, as well as gossiping about their friends, complaining about men and incorrectly solving mathematical problems on the side. And it was not long before this daily custom became a weekly tradition.
The NUWSS's attempts to spur the government to action were as follows:
- Making petitions about the opposite of their cause, then disguising their actual cause in the fine print
- Visiting the House of Lords while menstruating
- Pressuring politicians by pretending to gossip about them
- Riding around on big floats and proclaiming their cause
- Offering nudes in exchange for support
- Reverse psychology utilising all of the above
- Citing Bible verses, even though the Bible is very clear about women and how they shouldn't interpret the Bible.
Their accomplishments were as follows:
- Half-decent nudes I guess
edit The Suffragettes
Suddenly, and for no apparent reason, a rogue Suffragist, Emmeline Pankhurst, decided to hijack the cause and use violence and seemingly irrational and purely emotional acts of violence to prove that women were fit for the vote. Their activities included bricking houses, blowing up postboxes (oh the humanity!) and chaining themselves to railings, waiting for the otherwise indifferent policemen to receive their orders to start caring about them. Many arrests followed, naturally, but before the prisons were completely filled with women and the original series of Orange is the New Black could be filmed, some of the women were overcome with the strange notion that women ought not to be objectified, let alone play roles in a pornographic series which disguised itself as a lesbian love story and a journey of self-discovery. This delayed the series for a further 100 years.
All was well, however, when women decided to go on hunger strike, as this allowed the government to force feed the women through a tube, much to the delight of the male audiences who had been eagerly awaiting the series, who were now in its stead given something rather more arousing. Winston Churchill, speaking at the time in his youth, stated:
'Serendipity has never been truly experienced until this day. I beat the fuck outta my dick so goddamn hard that my left leg has gone completely numb.'
The latter part of this statement came to be a famous proverb, repeated most eloquently only recently by ya boi EatDatPussy445. (Meme reference, sorry, but I feel a lot more confident having dipped briefly into a subject in which I am highly confident of my knowledge).
edit The Martyr for the Cause
Forgive me, but I feel that the comedic tragedy of a Emily Davison would come across better if I presented it as though it were a fictional account, in the form of a poem, specifically, but I urge you to remember that it is not.
- Once upon a grand old time
- Did Emily Davison plot a small crime
- In a feeble attempt to earn a dime
- For her cause which waned with the passing of time
- Every weekend would she wait
- Two steps before her gate
- To pin a banner, purple white and green
- On a milk-mule's unsuspecting spleen
- And one day when Ascot did come round
- Did she attempt something rather more profound;
- As the gun signified the start of the race
- Did she, in the name of suffrage, attempt a disgrace.
- And as the King's horse the straight did approach
- Did she with all the agility of a carriage-coach
- 'Despite the calls of danger's reproach
- 'Venture into the course, scuttling as a roach.
- 'Out on the field as the horses sped
- No time for a word of warning could be spared
- As the King's horse trampled, leaving her dead
- Leaving some laughing, some despaired.
I hope you do not think I twisted this into an opportunity to flaunt my poetics; I merely thought some rhythm and rhyme would get across how stupid this action truly was. If anything, it proved to the men of the time that women were indeed irrational, emotional and, above all, bad at maths. To be honest, this action didn't really accomplish anything, much to my approval.
And this reaction from the males is exactly what followed. To quote Seebohm Rowntree, a notorious and prolific man of men:
Even the backbench Labour Party members, those who wished to rise to power later on in their political careers, and therefore evaders of controversy, couldn't help a little snigger in the House of Commons. Such snide behaviour didn't hinder Gordon Brown from becoming Prime Minister eventually though, though his anti-female rights sentiments remained apparent throughout.
edit The War, and, skipping a few years, Third Wave Feminism
The War showed men that women were somewhat handy with industrial equipment, and perhaps deserved some say in the country's running. Th vote therefore was then given to all the women who had done the most work; the rich, old ones. Modern day feminism is a whole other issue, but I will gloss over it briefly here:
Apart from the few who fight for issues that actually matter, it's a hot, sprawling mess of vain and unproven complaints. But hey, that's women for ya (some would say). In the words of all respectable and trustworthy politicians:
'Unproven facts will not be tolerated. All of my facts, on the other hand...'