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Letter: LWV continues to encourage participation in government

I am sure there are many of us who are really getting tired of hearing about all the problems of the world, our country, our state, of our community. Just too much, and anyway, what can one person do?

Really, what can one person do? Well, over a century ago, many women felt that many of the problems of their day could be solved if women got the right to participate in government. The right to vote being the key to righting some blatant wrongs that were evident in the society of their day. It might seem strange to you, young people, that women were not really citizens and the men who were in power fought tooth and nail to keep it that way.

But finally after about 80 years of determined struggle, an amendment was passed in 1919, essentially giving full citizen rights to the women. The suffragists also realized that they needed to be educated to use these rights, and thus the League of Women Voters was created with the belief that the key to democracy is a government in which we all participate. Over the years the issues have changed, but our mission to encourage the informed and active participation in government has not changed.

So what does the League of Women Voters do?

We sponsor debates and forums on local, regional and national issues, register voters, provide nonpartisan voter's guides, and as a group study current issues and lobby for legislation we have consensus on. The League of Women Voters believes in good government and the education of voters who will hold leaders responsible for enacting good and fair laws.

Our membership is open to both men and women. There is a place for you if you believe in our purpose and have the urge to do something about issues you care about. If you're new in town, check us out. Our meetings are always open to the public.

Florence Pendergrast

Membership chairwoman of the Willmar Area LWV