Tuesday, July 12, 2016

It is a Privilege and Not a Right: Two Famous Quotes From our Past

Excerpts from Argument Against Women's 
Suffrage, 1911 by J. B. Sandford, Chairman
of Democratic Caucus :

     Suffrage is not a right.  It is a privilege that may or may not be granted.  Politics is no place for a woman consequently the privilege should not be granted to her.....

     Woman suffrage has been proved a failure in states that have tried it.  It is wrong. California should profit from the mistakes of other states. Not one reform has equal suffrage effected.  On the contrary, statistics go to show that in most equal suffrage states, Colorado particularly, that divorces have greatly increased since the adoption of the equal suffrage amendment, showing that it has been a home destroyer.  Crime has also increased due to lack of the mothers in the home.

William Lyon MacKenzie King - Prime Minister of Canada
Canada's Post-World War Jewish Immigration Policy:

     "It is not a fundamental human right of any alien to enter Canada. It is a privilege."

     This emphasis and preoccupation with distinguishing the concepts of rights and privileges has shown itself to be the cornerstone of the justification for bigotry and exclusion based on irrelevant criteria including gender, race and religion.  The famous quote by a senior Canadian immigration official in 1995 commenting on the number of Jews that should be allowed into Canada - "None is too many" is the embodiment of this flawed reasoning.

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