Timothy Sloane

Adolfo Camarillo High School | Camarillo, CA | 10th

Inspirational Family Member
Emma Kroening

 I looked over the shelves, gazing in admiration of my mother and my father, who were so brave to leave their home in Sweden in hopes of something greater. My mother looked beautiful, the ideal woman I had always aspired to be. They said life would be better here. They said America would be better for me. But what about America is better? I always loathed my life in Sweden. Once I came here, I envied my previous life. No struggles, less misogyny, and more respect from men and women. Without respect and rights, I was living a nightmare. I was well known in my community, but being known does not automatically lead to being respected. I was always told to make do with what I had, and that all I could do was try to make the best out of every situation. The thing was, though, my situation was the opposite of what I wanted. In Sweden, women did not have a voice. My father told me “we” would have a say once we got to America, but I now believe he was referring solely to himself. My mother told me this would be better for us, but those must have been my father’s words. Nonetheless, I felt okay about my voyage across the great Atlantic to this new land. It may be miserable, but that was the same for my life in Sweden. Sweden seemed like it would never change, but I saw hope in America. Little did I know it, but women would soon be granted the right to vote. I was the first woman from my family to ever vote in America. After marriage, I had a daughter, and she took the last name of my husband, Mickey Knapp. What a beautiful name. I think she is going to have some lovely great-grandchildren long down the road in a world unknowing of one Emma Kroening.

Historical Figure I Admire
Emily Wilding Davison

 Emily Wilding Davison was an English suffragette born in London, England, late in the year of 1872. After her childhood, she grew up to be a teacher in primary school. English primary school is the equivalent to elementary school, as the age of children is low on average. Davison left her teaching career to join the women’s rights movement, becoming a well-known suffragette for her actions against misogyny. Davison took to action when what she saw was unjust, ranging from indecent portrayal of women to cases as large as domestic violence. Her protests were public, rather than being a silenced voice with a burning desire to speak out. The phrase “actions speak louder than words” sums up the suffragette and suffragist movements perfectly, a group of women defending their constitutional rights to have a say in the mess of a democracy America was in at the time after just having banned slavery beforehand. Due to the fact that only men could vote and have a say, there was not an accurate representation of all people groups, just as the senate being represented by the population of colonies was unfair, as colonies like Virginia had a much larger population than colonies like Maryland. In this case, Virginia was to Maryland as men were to women. Ultimately, the senate would be compiled by two members from each individual state, so that each state had as much say in bills and laws as another. This idea carried over to the case of misogyny, as women desired equivalent power to that of men.

Davison made her opposition to government extremely public, in the same way colored groups would later publicly defy the regulations set in stone by the American government. This public defiance would lead Davison to a horse-racing track during a race. Davison ended up being trampled by a horse, suffering a skull fracture and tremendous amounts of brain damage in the process of contact with the bewildered beast. Several days later, these injuries resulted in Davison’s death, as the damage suffered by the brain was too great to be overcome.

What the Project Means to Me

Throughout this project, I have been able to analyze my family’s past, discover the struggles of countless women who came before me, and look inside myself to differentiate fairness from the lack of justice. Without rights, women were powerless to the stature of men and a government without feminine representation. Since then, women have been granted rights equal to those of men, and male and female have been represented as they should have been all along. When this task was introduced to me, I initially saw it as a chore, but I now think of it as an opportunity I am glad I was given. I was able to explore how a group of people revolved around a single idea, fighting with passion to achieve their goal. While some women were in fear and living in silence, some took their stand and were the front for women’s rights. The movement made me think of the movement by Martin Luther King Jr. and the others who were unfairly discriminated against by people who thought themselves supreme. The flaw fought against by these groups of people is that they are thought to be unequal, but there is no better or worse group of people, all are the same. With the movements carried out by suffragists and suffragettes, women were granted their long awaited rights. They might not have been considered equal by all, but the important thing was that the law stated them as equal, it always would from that point on.

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