Fighting For The Vote Is Not “Wheedling”

This weekend, I got to watch Iron Jawed Angels. It’s a documentary about the violent period of time just before American women finally got the right to vote.

It highlighted parts of history that never got acknowledged in schools. These women faced attacks, wrongful arrest, the loss of their children and family strife. The movie also touched on racism within the feminist movement. It was interesting and very well done.

My problem is with the movie description. It said the group of suffragettes got together to “wheedle” the government into giving women the right to vote. I’m not sure if this will work if you’re not logged on to Netflix, but here’s a link to the movie.

Wheedle? Seriously? The fight for the right to vote is reduced to wheedling in Netflix’s eyes?

This was one of the suffragettes being arrested for picketing in front of the White House.
That’s not wheedling.
These women were charged with “blocking traffic” and sentenced to a workhouse. When they continued their protest with a hunger strike, they were forcibly given feeding tubes through their mouths and noses.
This is not wheedling.
via The US National Archives flickr account


These women were fighters, and they were doing it nonviolently, but they still suffered very physical suffering at the hands of people who didn’t agree with them. There was also immense emotional and psychological stress, but they refused to give up.

There was debate, but wheedling wasn’t what the younger generation featured in this movie did.

It was such a blatant reminder of all the work we still have to do that it took away from the victorious ending.

I mean, if a big company like Netflix is willing to publish that sort of phrasing on their official web page and DVD sleeves, what does that say about how women are still viewed and treated today?

I’m currently trying to figure out who to contact about it, because that’s just not right.

Leave a Reply