Search This Blog

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Portland Political Study League, Women Citizens, and Jury Service 1916

Many Oregon women and their supporters joined women in the U.S. and other nations and looked to women's political and civic participation beyond the vote as a key to progress. As we've seen with the case of Astoria, Oregon, women participated in civic organizations to take action to better their communities.
In Portland many women activists joined the Political Study League to prepare themselves for informed voting and other civic action. Many believed that jury service was a next step in political participation and worked to pass state legislation removing restrictions on women's jury service.
This article from the Oregonian in November 1916 reports on a meeting of the Political Study League with featured speaker lawyer and activist C.E.S. Wood. Wood echoed the view that women would bring a particular perspective to political action that was different from men. And he made this argument specifically for women's jury service.
"Woman, with her sympathy and intuition, can do more than the man," he noted. "In the jury a woman is in her own right. The judges and lawyers exalt law above justice, while the jury comes in as a fresh breeze and cares for the human side of the case."

"Woman Rated Higher," Oregonian, November 19, 1916, 5.

No comments:

Post a Comment