Archive for April, 2012
What began as a comment to Anna Belle’s inspiring blog that highlighted the spirit of our foremothers became a relevant blog post.
Anna Belle writes, “We could stand to take some lessons from these ladies and begin to organize for action that actually helps us realize some of our current goals. How can women cultivate such disciplined actions in the pursuit of equal pay, equal justice, and equal representation? Let’s talk about that in comments!”
OK, I would add what I view as the most important ingredient that was not yet mentioned and that is UNITY. Women’s unity and racial unity were ultimately responsible for the successes you mentioned and the Arab Spring and Occupy movements. No one person could do it all and yet there had to be a leader with a plan that the masses could embrace and execute. I see this as the shortcoming of the Occupiers because they didn’t yet deliver a plan folks could get their hands around and help move forward. However, all hope is not lost in their endeavor.
Today, I encounter women in Washington, DC, clamoring for credit for past accomplishments – in Congress, in books and blogs and within our national women’s organizations. They step over one another, neglect to acknowledge their mistakes (along with their accomplishments), so that women may learn from the past and they quietly ostracize outsiders who threaten the power structure of the Old Gals Network. Oh yes, there is a network among women too. Small and dysfunctional but with a tremendous growth potential for doing good.
A key challenge for activists is information overload 24/7 that leads to a lack of focus and understanding that there is anything relevant for women beyond male approval. We have no knowledge of what the tools are to achieve equality. Mainstream media does not produce an informed electorate on the root causes of women’s injustice. The world according to the male-dominated media is violent and hate-filled towards women. We see it everyday.
So putting our bodies on the line today with the backdrop of pornography, the sex trade, sexist advertisements, TV programs and video games is a deadly prospect. Most women are fearful and why shouldn’t they be? The mentality in modern day America is sick, sadistic and misogynistic. And women have little power to confront it or stop it. The law is against us.
The President doesn’t protect us. Congress doesn’t protect us. Religions don’t protect us. Military doesn’t protect us. Law enforcement doesn’t protect us. Judges don’t protect us. Other women don’t protect us. Men do not protect us. Women don’t protect themselves.
Women’s bodies have become the battleground in a civil war between men and women, conservatives and progressives, capitalism and socialism, oligarchy and democracy.
Women LOST the battle. But not the WAR. Let’s admit it. Because if we admit it – we can discuss it openly. We may cry about it. We can learn from one another. We can learn to listen to one another better. To lick our wounds, so that they can finally start to heal. Healing will strengthen our resolve. Our resolve to get back up on the horse of Justice requires women to trust one another. Imagine that…. To trust All Women. Powerful.
Dividing women by color is divisive. Divide and conquer. We are women first and foremost. Our experiences are not all that dissimilar – shades of gray – but not worlds apart. All colors, shapes, persuasions, ages, classes, ethnicities make up this beautiful earth of women.
The new movement begins with zero tolerance for accepting ourselves as inferior human beings to men. Period. We must expect respect for ourselves and our sisters everywhere. We cannot let up or give up until we have our equality in writing from our government to be recognized forevermore. Without a signed contract, women have no guarantee. We have seen how precarious our rights are today. Verbal agreements don’t hold up in a court of law. Protective laws can be overturned overnight. Constitutional amendments are nearly impossible to overturn.
Look everywhere in society. Signed contracts are the only recourse for seeking justice when the terms of the agreement are not met. ERA says no more favoritism or discrimination on the basis of sex. All male and female human beings are equal in the eyes of the law. There is nothing more fundamentally democratic than that.
Abandon the tradition of the pedestal, Ladies. Men aren’t looking up at you unless it’s up your dress. Quit being Spectators of the feminist movement because Equality is not a spectator sport. And Justice will not be offered to us eventually if we’re patient and good little girls. It hasn’t come in 236 years since 1776 and before that 2,000 years since Eve was blamed for the Fall of Man.
Progress begins with leveling the playing field – America’s social contract. Women’s equality must be written in stone – not sand. During this 2012 election year – Demand that your elected officials support (HJ Res. 47 in the House and SJ Res. 39 in the Senate urging Congress to Remove the Deadline for Ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment. Hello! There are only 3 states left to go! Women already achieved 2/3 Congress + 35 states between 1972 – 1977. But Congress put a time limit on ERA and it expired on June 30, 1982. Women didn’t abandon the cause because it was no longer needed. They were told to start over! Time had run out. Since when do human rights expire in a democracy that purports to be the Leader of the Free World?
Who are the Officials who lack the courage to consider a concrete and immediate remedy to end the War on Women? Those who give you lip-service to get your vote this November but refuse to support ERA’s 3-state strategy. Currently, it is the majority of the 112th Congress, Ladies, if you check out the 10 members of the ERA Power Team in the Senate and the 32 members of the ERA Power Team in the House. Why don’t we have a single Republican on this bill? ERA’s author, Dr. Alice Paul, was a Republican with dual doctoral degrees in Economics and Civil Law. She was an expert who knew the remedy for elevating the status of women nearly century ago if only both Parties and the President would have listened.
ERA is not a partisan political agenda. These are the real heroes and heroines for Women in November! The rest who don’t cosponsor the ERA 3-state bill do not deserve your money, time or vote. It’s FISH or CUT BAIT to the female electorate. The status quo has got to go! Don’t compromise womanhood by settling for elected officials who are C-O-W-A-R-D-S! They either support all paths to achieve the ERA or they are against women. Period.
Any member of Congress can cosponsor our ERA joint resolutions in the House and Senate if s/he hears from enough constituents that it matters! A simple phone call will take one minute of your time. Can you afford that in exchange for equality for women? Then ask 10 more friends across the country to do the same. Here’s your 1 minute activist moment:
Click on the state to find your House member and two senators here.
U.S. House of Representatives:
Call the Capitol Hill Switchboard toll-free at 1-877-762-8762. Ask to speak with your member’s office. Leave a voice mail or message for the person in charge of Judiciary issues (Equal Rights Amendment). Your message is: “Hello, my name is _________ and I am calling from ________(town/city, state). I urge my Representative to cosponsor House Joint Resolution 47 for the ERA because the path to equality and justice for females in America must not have a deadline.”
Call the Capitol Hill Switchboard toll-free at 1-877-762-8762. Ask to leave a voice mail or message for the person in charge of Judiciary issues (Equal Rights Amendment). Your message is: “Hello, my name is _________ and I am calling from ________(town/city, state). I urge my senator to cosponsor Senate Joint Resolution 39 because the path to equality and justice for females in America must not have a deadline.”
ERA is the signature guarantee by the U.S. government to establish the principle that, “All men and women are created equal and therefore are entitled to their inalienable rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”
ERA is the beginning – a major milestone in women’s history begun centuries ago by our foremothers – toward rebuilding a more humane, free and prosperous America.
The ERA is women’s silver bullet and is ours for the taking.
United 4 Equality, LLC (U4E) began 4 years ago to pave the way to ERA’s immediate victory. Our all-volunteer coalition from across the U.S. has achieved incredible success by spearheading two bills in Congress – HJ Res. 47 in the House and SJ Res. 39 in the Senate. With no money, no power, no influence and no recognition. But with Stamina, Fearlessness and Action.
It is up to women to unite around this concrete solution for ourselves and for our loved ones. It is time for feminist bloggers in a united voice (never uttered by MSM) to offer a single, tangible solution – the ERA 2015 campaign – versus scads of commentary about the problems women face. It is time for activists to unite around a fundamental right denied to women and arrive at the ERA finish line by 2015 to take our place at the table. Beside the men.
This is the fundamental way to build a better America. Women must lead the way and refuse to take No for an answer. NO We won’t start Over for ERA. YES, we will succeed in three more states by 2015. This is our battle cry. This is a turning point in America’s future. Don’t ignore its significance. Stop saying we can’t.
Trust Yourself. Visualize ERA’s Victory. Act now.
If you believe in United 4 Equality for the ERA, join us, volunteer, and contribute to our grassroots campaign. There hasn’t been progress in 30 years for ERA before United 4 Equality! You have nothing to lose and we need your help. Together, ERA will spread like wildfire…