ERA rides again!


8 comments posted
Discuss on DKos

There's also a poll on what you think its prospects are:

media girl's picture
Posted by media girl on 4 March 2005 - 6:45pm
The enthusiasm there is underwhelming

Who says women are equal partners in progressive politics?

media girl's picture
Posted by media girl on 4 March 2005 - 7:23pm
A state at a time for ERA

Over on DKos, I mentioned I remembered the world before Roe v. Wade and when any kind of abortion was illegal in the United States. A friend who was a few years older than me had gone to Sweden for a safe and legal abortion. Another friend flew to Japan.

Then, one by one the states started to change the law. If memory serves, about 30 to 40-percent of the states had legalized abortion by the time of Roe v. Wade.

Maybe it will be easier to win this on state by state - that is a state-wide ERA, or even a county-wide or city-wide ERA.

At bottom the question is, "are women equal? And if not, why not? How not?" This debate is not taking place. Men, such as President Summers at Harvard, are presenting scientific "facts" and as a lofty educator is telling us "what's wrong with you women." Women are mental inferiors. Recall the Nazis said Jews were inferior and had "science" on their side, too. The argument was used against blacks, but they did not take it sitting down - unless it was sitting at the front of the bus, or as part of a sit-in.

Maybe the blue states will adopt laws of equality for women. It will be a VERY hard fight, but it's how suffrage was won as well.

Sufferage was not just nationally, at first, but at the state level. Each state that at least gets the ERA into the hopper starts the process and the dialog. With more and more women (an yes some are Uncle Toms) in the legislature, women may put men's feet to the fire in a way we only could dream of 30 years ago.

Worth a try.

Matsu's picture
Posted by Matsu on 4 March 2005 - 8:25pm
What I fear that it will take another Dark Ages before anyone wakes up to this.

media girl's picture
Posted by media girl on 4 March 2005 - 8:54pm
Take heart

We are in the seats of power and when Summers put his foot in his mouth, he was called on it. That would not have happened in the 1970's during the second wave.

There is a critical mass that is available that was not there before, Uncle Toms notwithstanding.

Again, acting at the local level may be the place where grass roots exercises power and moves this up the food chain.

Matsu's picture
Posted by Matsu on 4 March 2005 - 8:58pm
We ARE the Free Press in American now.

53% of the population, women. All we have to do is get behind this Mother and PUSH!

Morgaine-ism© #8

"A Woman's Sexual and Reproductive Autonomy is Sacred and Absolute."

Morgaine Swann's picture
Posted by Morgaine Swann on 5 March 2005 - 12:04am
But why are we inferior?

I think that people actually believe women are inferior, or at least so different from men that there should be another set of laws for women which flies in the face of the idea that all (hu)men(s) are created equal.

If Jefferson's notion was wrong, then that needs to be brought out. President Summers at Harvard was lauded for standing up to the quaint Jeffersonian notion.

Time for a debate and we may fins some women do not believe they are equal. If they did, the ERA would have sailed through long ago.


I recall visiting another couple - a man and woman and her husband was going on and on that some people wanted an extension to ratify the ERA. He said, "they had their chance," and compared it to a sporting even where a team (football may have been the analogy) where one "side," - get a load of the language! - wanted to extend the "game" to a fifth quarter because one team had lost.

My ex and I argued that "human rights is not a game." Would we have said the same about slavery - that Dred Scott settled the matter and the sore loser North was wanting to go to a fifth quarter when the South so clearly won?

All that is interesting, but the stunning part was that his wife, who was the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) for a major corporation was agreeing with his argument. Of course, within 18 months, they were divorced after a five year marriage, but she was buying in, at least on the surface, to his powerplay game of dominance.

We may be 53-percent, but we still may be under some man's thumb where our only chance to show independence is in the privacy of the voting booth. Open organization or attending a rally is impossible. The man sneers, "after all, their just a bunch of man-hating dykes." I know a lot of women who will not cross their husbands on that one.

The question remains, do WE believe we are inferior, and if so, how are we inferior and finally, does that overturn ideas of the Founding Fathers.

I mean, Summers really threw a spanner in the works on that one.

I can see the headlines now: "Harvard President says principles of the Declaration of Independence should be called into question." All are not created equal - just look at who runs the world!

Matsu's picture
Posted by Matsu on 5 March 2005 - 5:47am
They've never been told anything different

This is the essence of why I write. Women haven't been given anything else to believe unless they've searched it out on their own. The information is there, but it's obscured, vilified, or out of print.

I believe that the human race is female. Males are an aberration that serve one purpose - to provide variety to the gene pool. (See The Redundant Male written by two male scientists for background on this.) That deviation from the original gender may, in fact, be dying out. (See Adam's Curse by Bryan Sykes for more on this). I believe that the nature of human reproduction was parthenogenesis, and that this is the origin of our obsession with immaculate conceptions, as well as the origin of Old Testament laws demanding that an unmarried woman be stoned if she becomes pregnant while unmarried.

If, as Sykes postulates, male infertility increases, it will still be possible to produce human females without cloning. Scientists have known since 1979 that two human ova, either from one woman, or from two different women, can be combined to form a zygote what will develop normally into a female human when implanted in a womb. Male cells, in contrast, can not be reproduced without an X. The only reason they aren't offering to do this for Lesbian couples that I can discern is that they don't want women to realize that men are expendable.

Most of the people who read this, of either gender, will have a knee jerk reaction against what I am saying. That's your patriarchal conditioning flying in the face of scientific evidence that contradicts the reality you're trained to believe in. This is the basis for the oppression of women. This is what necessitates keeping us down financially, with violence, with hatred. If there were no threat, you wouldn't be conditioned to have such a negative response.

Look at what happens in every field where women are given anything approaching equal access. We excel. Let me use basketball as an example. Women are just beginning to manifest the benefits of Title IX. Yet when they have competitions for shooting baskets, the women beat the men. Women out-perform men on endurance tasks. I'll refer you to Arnold Schwarzenegger's book on weight Training for Women for background on this. Even that old sexist admits that the only advantage men have physically is upper body strength and short bursts of intense energy.

Woman's center of power is in her lower body, and the fact that we bear children has given us great strength and endurance. Our higher fat to lean muscle ratio makes us better swimmers, as well as the most likely to survive hardship or famine. Women's fashions, from burkas to manolos, are ways of hobbling women and making us more vulnerable to attack, and less able to protect ourselves. Reports have said that many more women died in the Tsunami than had to because they wore long saris and/or put the safety of their husbands and children before their own.

Our more active corpus callosum means that the feminine brain is more capable of recovery following a stroke. It better enables us to better access our intuition, and makes us better suited to be astronauts. I can go on for days, but you get the idea.

We are not inferior, and it is our job to get the word out to as many of us as possible that we've been lied to. Intimidation surrounds us in the form of husbands, lovers, fathers, priests and bosses, This very culture is designed to keep us afraid and docile. Don't believe it. Even if you aren't financially independent; even if you aren't safe, know in your own mind that we are more than equal. The more they threaten, the more they intimidate, the more they discriminate, the more they ridicule - that force is in measure to how much better they instinctively know you are. If we were truly inferior, there would be no need to keep us down.

Morgaine-ism© #8

"A Woman's Sexual and Reproductive Autonomy is Sacred and Absolute."

Morgaine Swann's picture
Posted by Morgaine Swann on 5 March 2005 - 6:04pm