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HomeIllinois NewsHow the left is trying to resurrect the unnecessary Equal Rights Amendment

How the left is trying to resurrect the unnecessary Equal Rights Amendment




The long-dead Equal Rights Amendment is making a comeback. Inez Stepman writes:

The amendment’s language sounds unobjectionable enough: “Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex.” But precisely because of its broad language, the amendment could open the gateway to all manner of constitutional claims most Americans reject.

American women are living the freest, most prosperous lives in human history. The Constitution protects their right to speak, worship, vote, bear arms and more. The female jobless rate is at a historic low, and women own the majority of wealth in the country, along with earning the lion’s share of higher degrees.

Women are perfectly capable of flexing political power: They make up the majority of voters in nearly every election. Sex discrimination is already forbidden under both federal and state laws, as well as by the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment. The ERA won’t add to those protections, but could be used to impose sex-sameness.

Men and women are different physically, psychologically and emotionally. And while often those differences aren’t relevant, sometimes they matter a great deal, including in situations where women’s safety can be placed at risk if they are treated exactly like men.

Proponents deny that it would have radical effects. But the broadness of its language and the addition of the amendment to existing antidiscrimination laws could be used by radicals to force women to be drafted into combat, disallow separate-sex bathrooms or even pull government funding from ­women’s shelters. In New Mexico and Connecticut, state-level ERAs have been interpreted as requiring government funding for abortion.

[Inez Stepman, “How the left is trying to resurrect the unnecessary Equal Rights Amendment,” New York Post, January 2]


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