Mrs. America and the Equal Rights Amendment

If you have not watched “Mrs. America” on Hulu, I recommend that you do so.  It’s the story of Phyllis Schlafly (Cate Blanchett) who founded the Eagle Forum and led the charge to stop the ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.  While the nine-part series is based on actual events, it takes some liberties.  So don’t take it as Gospel truth, but it’s an interesting perspective on the culture wars over equal rights for women. 

The ERA was passed by Congress in 1972.  You know what else happened that year?  Title IX came into law.  Two laws designed to level the playing field between men and women adopted by Congress in the same year.  The ERA, however, was a proposed amendment to the Constitution, and so it required ratification by 38 states.  “Mrs. America” tells the story of how Mrs. Schlafly and her supporters blocked that ratification process.     

Title IX was a simpler matter:  a 37-word law requiring that educational institutions that receive federal financial assistance not discriminate on the basis of sex.   It was overwhelmingly passed by Congress and did not need ratification by the states.  This week in the Daily Dawg we have focused on Title IX and its new regulations that go into effect on August 14th. We’ll be Zooming with the Dawg at 10:00 this morning to talk more about this along with Sarah Orman, a senior attorney with the Texas Association School Boards.  Between me and Sarah you will be getting the perspective of two generations, both genders, father and daughter. Hope to see your face on a small square on my computer.