A hard fought Civil Rights victory was finally realized Friday, June 26, 2015 when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled all fifty states must issue licenses for and recognize marriages between same-sex couples. This landmark decision is a culmination of blood, sweat and tears from decades of litigation and unwavering activism from LGBQT Americans and their allies who believe the ability to marry the one you love is a fundamental civil right that should be protected under the law in America.
"This decision affirms what millions of Americans already believe in their hearts. When all Americans are treated as equal, we are all more free." President Barack Obama’s response to US Supreme Court Marriage Equality ruling, June 26, 2015The ruling was momentous and long overdue. We congratulate our LGBQT siblings and share in this joyous, historic triumph.
But this victory begs the question: What about Equality for U.S. Women?
Although most people do not know it, LGBQT rights is not the final plank of the Civil Rights Movement. The disgraceful truth? There is a large void left unfinished on the road to justice in America. Until we complete it, the equality of fifty-one percent of America - women -are not protected in the Constitution.
It's 2015, how can this be? Easy! Over 70% of Americans mistakenly believe that the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) was ratified back in the 1970's.
Reality is, although ERA did pass out of both chambers of Congress in 1972 after being introduced in every Congressional session for nearly 50 years, it has been stalled 3 states short of the 38 required to ratify a Constitutional Amendment since June 30, 1982. The nearly century old amendment authored by Dr. Alice Paul and Crystal Eastman and first unveiled on July 21, 1923-- the 75th anniversary of the first Women's Rights Convention held in Seneca Falls, New York--would make discrimination on the basis of sex illegal under US National law. Unfortunately, a thirty-three year obstruction, the result of an arbitrary deadline imposed by Congress in the Amendment's preamble, has successfully put the brakes on American Women's full Constitutional protection.
Fortunately, Senator Ben Cardin (MD-D) and Mark Kirk's (IL-R) bipartisan bill--SJ Res 15--to eliminate the ratification deadline, allowing time to acquire 3 more states, is gaining support in the Senate and the bill's identical companion in the House--Congresswoman Jackie Speier's (D-CA) HJ Res 51--is gaining momentum.
"I believe there should never be a deadline when it comes to ensuring the equal rights of any American." Senator Ben CardinSince the United States' conception, women's rights have not only been habitually kicked down the road, but intentionally obstructed and often maliciously shoved back and trampled upon by a few, powerful elite who stand to gain by keeping women down. In keeping with the spirit of the Supreme Court decision, we are confident those celebrating will not only agree 92 years is long enough for U.S. women to wait for Constitutional equality, but will step up to make it happen.
Now Is Our Time!
Call To Action!Link to original article from DailyKos
See where your elected officials stand on this historic legislation by clicking on People Demanding Action's interactive map and do your part to insure American women are granted the justice we've earned and deserve by joining ERA Action's Grassroots Facebook events:
Where Does Your Legislator Stand on the ERA?
Senator Cardin ERA Call to Action
Congresswoman Jackie Speier ERA Call to Action