Susan B. Anthony Museum Rejects Trump's Pardon In Epic Twitter Thread

by Leah Groth
Anna Moneymaker-Pool/Library of Congress/Getty

The National Susan B. Anthony Museum and House has opted to pass on Trump’s pardon of the feminist icon

Susan B. Anthony has been dead for 114 years, so when President Donald Trump decided to pardon her for her 1872 conviction of voting illegally (before women had the right to vote), she couldn’t exactly make a statement. However, the museum dedicated to the feminist and women’s suffrage leader has opted to respond on her behalf, and their answer is a big, fat, no thanks.

On Tuesday, the 100th anniversary of the passing of the 19th Amendment granting women the right to vote, Trump released a statement that he had opted to pardon Anthony from her “wrongful and unjust conviction.” He explained that the act “removes a conviction for exercising a fundamental American right and one that we as citizens will lawfully employ this November. In light of these facts and in recognition of her historic work to improve the justice of our Constitution, the President has concluded that Susan B. Anthony is worthy of this posthumous pardon.”

On Wednesday the National Susan B. Anthony Museum and House in Rochester, New York, politely declined on Twitter.

“On news of a presidential pardon for Susan B. Anthony on August 18, 2020: Objection! Mr. President, Susan B. Anthony must decline your offer of a pardon today!” read the first of many tweets from the museum.

“Anthony wrote in her diary in 1873 that her trial for voting was, “‘The greatest outrage History ever witnessed.’ She was not allowed to speak as a witness in her own defense, because she was a woman. Judge Hunt dismissed the jury and pronounced her guilty.”

The museum explained that she was “outraged to be denied a trial by jury” and thought paying a fine would validate the unfair trial. “To pardon Susan B. Anthony does the same,” they explained.

Most importantly, they offered a variety of ways to honor Anthony, much more impactful than a pardon of her “crime” that was committed nearly 150 years ago.

“If one wants to honor Susan B. Anthony today, a clear stance against any form of voter suppression would be welcome,” they explained. “Support for the Equal Rights Amendment would be well received,” the next tweet read continued. “Advocacy for human rights for all would be splendid.”

They also pointed out that Anthony fought for more than just the woman’s right to vote.

“Anthony was also a strong proponent of sex education, fair labor practices, excellent public education, equal pay for equal work, and elimination of all forms of discrimination,” the museum added.

“As the National Historic Landmark and Museum that has been interpreting her life and work for seventy-five years from her home and headquarters, we would be delighted to share more,” they concluded the thread.

Aside from the museum, many others expressed on social media that they were less than impressed with Trump’s gesture.

Trump’s gesture comes just months before the November election and in the midst of the debate over mail-in voting and his claims of potential fraud. He has repeatedly insisted that the way he will lose the election to Joe Biden is if the vote is rigged.