There was a phrase back in the 1960s, that women’s rights activists (called women’s lib) burned their bras. As far as I can tell, no bras were actually put to the torch (what a ridiculous waste of fabric!). But the phrase stuck around.
I am deeply troubled by the current women’s movement. I’m troubled by the need for it and I’m troubled by the number of women who don’t see the need for it.
Yesterday I read this article by Sharon Weeks about the history of women’s rights in the US. You should take a moment and read the article. You should take another moment and share the article. But in case you’re late for class, the bottom line on women’s rights is there aren’t any.
Back when I was a tot, there was constitutional amendment being ratified. It was the Equal Rights Amendment and was to be the 27th Amendment to the Constitution (full text below). Terrifying, right?
- Section 1. Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex.
- Section 2. The Congress shall have the power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article.
- Section 3. This amendment shall take effect two years after the date of ratification.
Remember our discussion the other day about the 20th Amendment? The Amendment was passed by Congress on March 2, 1932 and ratified on January 23, 1933. If you get out all your fingers and toes, you’ll notice that this whole process took less than a year. The 18th Amendment (the one that banned liquor sales) was ratified in just over a year. You would have thought that one would have taken longer…
The ERA was passed by Congress in 1972 and sent to the states for ratification. There was a 7 year time limit for getting it ratified which was then extended to 10 years. If you’ll get out all your fingers and toes, you’ll figure out that 10 years is much longer than less than a year.
If you look at the current Amendments to the Constitution of the United States, you’ll see that the Equal Rights Amendment is not among them, despite having been introduced in every Congress since the deadline. Every. Single. One.
We’ve made some progress. There is no question about that. But if you look at the statistics, women still make less than men. Women are promoted less than men.
Many women are against the idea of equality. I think it’s because they confuse the right to be treated equality with the requirement to be the same.
It’s 2017 and I’m very troubled that we are still fighting some of the same battles that were being fought in 1970 and 1917. What kind of a world are we going to hand to our sisters and our daughters and our nieces? And our brothers and sons and nephews for that matter.
P.S. Yes, you still have to hold the door and take out the garbage. That’s called common courtesy and house rules.