In March of 1776, four months before the United States claimed independence from Britain, Abigail Adams wrote a letter to her husband John Adams. The letter just might have been the very first spark that lit the women’s rights movement ablaze.
Abigail Adams urged the future President of the United States to “Remember the Ladies” when deliberating the legal premises of the fledgling republic. She writes, “I long to hear that you have declared an independency and by the way in the new Code of Laws — which I suppose it will be necessary for you to make — I desire you would Remember the Ladies and be more generous and favorable to them than your ancestors.”
In the 1770s, even the wealthiest women, like Abigail Adams, had no citizenship or political rights. The Declaration of Independence should have marked the beginning of an exceptional American history. Instead, John Adams scoffed at the notion that half of all Americans deserve equal rights to “life, liberty and pursuit of happiness.” That was nearly 250 years ago. American women remain second-class citizens today.
Listen to Velshi’s commentary below.
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