Were the Founding Fathers Sexist from 1787?
Sexism is an ideology which is a disadvantage and claims different rights for men and women. If the control belongs to men, it is a patriarchy, and if to women – a matriarchy. At present, all known societies in the world are patriarchal, therefore sexist. In fact, sexism is a kind of discrimination in accordance with the already known fascism and racism, only in fascist or racist regimes people are divided into different categories according to race, and when mentioning sexism, people are divided by gender. The difference is also in the fact that, unlike racism and fascism, sexism never enforced people to massive bloody battles, armed conflicts, etc. Sexism exists on a more personal level. For example, rape is considered a punishable offense, and marital rape is a personal family matter which does not apply to others. Quite often, people do not pay attention to sexism or they simply neglect it. The grounds of this order of things are to be found in history where it used to be beneficial for a man to be dedicated to the work outside the home (for example, hunting), and for a woman – to sit at home with children. Therefore, women were regarded inferior and not deserving many human rights. Even at the times of Founding Fathers, such a notion as sexism existed since it is manifested in different aspects.
During the period of 1776-1780, eleven states adopted constitutional laws. They were assigned to the new provisions (the principle of popular government, the social contract, republicanism, etc.) that later contributed to the creation of the U.S. Constitution. The positive role was played by the Bill of Rights and the principles of popular sovereignty, elected state officials, etc. However, at the same time, the Voting Rights were introduced with undemocratic qualifications suspending the blacks, women and youth from elections, and granting privileges to propertied strata.
Consequently, the Constitution and the Statute of Human Rights in 1787 did not guarantee women legal equality with men. In order to achieve relative equality before the law, another 200 years were spent. The most noticeable changes began in the 60’s. An extremely important role in this process was played by the feminist movement. Now there are hundreds of women’s organizations, many of which are international organizations of women in the United States.
One of the oldest organizations – National Women’s Federation of businessmen and professionals – was founded in 1919 and formally endorsed the Equal Rights Amendment in 1937. This organization was the leader in the fight for women’s rights; it is associated with the most important milestones in the history of the women’s movement in the United States in our time, from the Act on Civil Rights and the Equal Pay Act to equally provided opportunities. Currently, the main purpose of the organization is to ensure fair treatment for working women, equal opportunities in education, better care of the children from the state, economic self-sufficiency of women and their full participation in the professional activity.
In conclusion, such physical and psychological division of two sexes was based on practical and physical differences between them (a man is stronger so he should participate in different activities while only a woman can give birth so she should stay at home and raise children). These differences still refer now to those who are sexist. They argue that to stop this separation of roles is unnatural, even if now the physical differences do not play such an important role as it was before. Other sexists justify their views in biology, but even more directly: they believe that women are inherently less rational, less logical than men and therefore deserve a lower position. As a result, it is evident that even developed countries, such as the USA, fail to eradicate sexism which existed for hundreds of years in its consciousness. Starting from Founding Fathers, women were limited, and they suffered from inferior treatment.