Open Letter To MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell, Rachel Maddow And Ed Schultz

— by Kimberley Johnsonaarom1

The three of you are the big MSNBC liberal spokespeople. You have powerful positions. You are admired and influential.

Ever since the Republican Party started going medieval on women’s rights, I have seen it covered in the media and on MSNBC. Outrage is expressed when it works for the segment but all in all, it’s not been properly reported on. Why? Because not enough women know about the War On Women and no real solution is provided. There is something that will make a huge difference and though it’s not an absolute solution, it would make an enormous and positive difference in women’s issues. The Equal Rights Amendment. It needs to be broken down in the simplest terms and sadly, I see no one person with major influence taking the problem to everyday women and breaking it down. If this were to happen, we would see swifter change.

Approximately 70% of women in this country don’t even know the ERA never passed. Someone who is influential in the mainstream media needs to address this.

Recently, a White House petition received the required signatures for the ERA to be ratified. This means the President must address it. I have not heard him do so. Rachel Maddow was Twitterbombed with tweets begging her to spread the word. Nothing.

Why would a Rhodes Scholar, who happens to be a lesbian and a champion for women, ignore the ERA? If I were Rachel Maddow, I would be on TV with a bullhorn demanding action NOW. But Maddow doesn’t address it and a Google search resulted in only one story by Maddow in 2011.  The same search showed zero results for Lawrence O’Donnell and Ed Schultz. No one is addressing the ERA now.

Why?

Feminism still carries a negative connotation. The women who don’t shave their legs and run naked through the streets in protest come to mind. Those women who take on the name ‘slut’ because they are SICK TO DEATH of not being equal and wanting choice and available, affordable birth control, are not wrapped up in a shiny, pretty media packages. Feminists are too often portrayed as angry and don’t make for appealing journalism unless there is a bill or legislation attached—and the guests on these shows talking about women’s rights are professional pundits, not everyday women who are working on passing the ERA. The idea of equality in the Constitution is largely ignored. Perhaps this is why we get angry.

Women dropped the ball in1972. We failed to get the ERA ratified, thanks in part to the lies anti-feminist Phyllis Schlafly told in her successful campaign to stop the ERA. We did see progress in the following decades but we forgot about our mission and got lazy. 2011 changed all of that and our rights are under attack. Thousands, maybe even millions of women realize that it’s now time take the necessary action and are currently working  to make it happen.

The ERA also brings to mind the protests. Eww, yucky women’s protests that no one in the media EVER wants to cover. Women dress up like vaginas and make demands! That’s not very ladylike or classy and does not fall into the purview of how women ‘should’ act. Women should be graceful and know their place—right? Even liberals are guilty of expecting this behavior. We are also guilty of arguing amongst ourselves about the how of it, and the action falls by the wayside.

We rarely hear about the struggles women have gone through so that women today have the right to vote, the ability to be financially independent, go to college and earn degrees. Women didn’t used have these rights, and in order to achieve these rights we were forced to ‘get ugly.’

Alice Paul dedicated her life so that women have the right to vote, along with Lucy Burns, Susan B. Anthony and many other feminists. If we take a clue from herstory, we see that being ignored didn’t stop these women. Angry mobs didn’t stop them. Being falsely accused and arrested didn’t stop them. Being forced to wear a straightjacket, strapped down and force-fed raw eggs until vomiting blood didn’t stop them and neither did violence, solitary confinement and public ridicule.

The lesson here is that you can continue to ignore the bigger picture when it pertains to women’s rights, but women are not going to stop. I hope that no woman has to ever endure the atrocities inflicted upon our foremothers, but I believe that we will do whatever it takes, even at the risk of being ‘angry.’ The media can help things move along. The question is, will you?

Equal rights takes nothing away from anyone. It only adds to the freedom everyone should have. Someone on television needs to explain why the 14th Amendment isn’t enough. It needs to be explained that black suffrage and women’s suffrage were the 15th and 19th Amendments, and the 14th does not guarantee equality under the law.

Unitewomen.org. Feminist Majority. ERA Action Commitees.  Me. All of us would be willing and grateful to appear on your show to enlighten viewers on action they can take right now. These groups are working very hard and need exposure to hasten progress. We promise to keep our clothes on and we won’t say vagina. I’ll even shave my legs.

Will you talk about this? Or will you continue to ignore it?


Re-published with permission —Original post found at Liberals Unite

Kimberley A. Johnson – A.K.A. The Anti Coulter is the author of The Virgin Diaries and an activist for women’s rights. Like her on Facebook, Twitter or friend her on FB HERE. Check out her campaign to raise money for her next book on Women’s Rights and The Importance Of Voting.

Historic Breakthrough for the ERA

It’s okay to contact Senator Heller.  If we don’t communicate with him he’ll not know he represents everyone…even those with a different perspective.

ERA 2012

From Veteran Feminists of America
URGENT! Historic Breakthrough for the ERA! Story is below … 
but if you know all this, scroll down to
YOUR HELP IS NEEDED

On March 22, 2012, nine Senate Democrats proposed that states be given another chance to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment. This is the 40th Anniversary of the Senate’s passage of the ERA and the first time the Senate has ever considered an ERA bill other than the "Start-over."

Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD.) and eight other Democrats proposed a joint resolution that would remove the 1972 deadline for getting 38 states to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA). By 1982, the ERA had been ratified by 35 states, three short of the 38 needed to become an amendment. Cardin said, that Congress "should give the states another chance," and said passage of a joint resolution by both the House and Senate extended the deadline once before, in the late 1970s.

Cardin noted that last year, Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia said that "certainly the Constitution does not require discrimination on the basis of sex. The only issue is whether it prohibits it. It doesn’t."

Cardin also stated that the 27th Amendment to the Constitution, which prohibits congressional pay raises from taking effect immediately, was ratified in 1992 – 203 years after first being proposed in 1789 by James Madison.

In 1992, following passage of the 27th Amendment, the ERA Summit, a national coalition working to jump-start a new ratification effort, sought a legal analysis as to whether the ERA’s time limit could be removed. The conclusion of this study: "Why the Equal Rights Amendment Remains Viable and Legally Before the States" pointed out that there was: No time limit in the Constitution, the time limit has already been changed once from 1979 to 1982 and, the ERA’s time limit is in the proposing clause not the Amendment.
Therefore, it was entirely up to Congress whether or not to remove the deadline

Following this analysis, in 1993, ERA activists were successful in getting a Resolution in the US House that would authorize Congress to recognize and accept the ratification by three more states. This bill, known as the "Three-state Strategy" was introduced into every Congress through 2008. During this time, efforts were made by ERA supporters to obtain a companion bill in the US Senate but they were never successful.

In 2009, Carolyn Cook, DC Coordinator for ERA Campaign Network, authored a bill that would remove ERA’s ratification deadline in support of the Three-State Strategy. Jean Landweber, WI Coordinator for ERA Campaign Network, convinced Representative Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) to sponsor the House bill HJ Res 47. It was introduced on the 100th Anniversary of International Women’s Day. March 8, 2011.

Since then, Carolyn Cook worked tirelessly to get a companion bill introduced in the Senate.

SJ Res. 39 was introduced by Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD) on March 22, 2012 to mark the 40th Anniversary of when both Houses of Congress first approved ERA and sent it out to the states. SJ 39 Res. is the companion bill to HJR 47.

SJR 39 Co-sponsors:
Co-sponsors of Cardin’s resolution to eliminate the ERA deadline are: Senators. Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Dick Durbin (D-IL.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Tom Harkin (D-IA), Mary Landrieu (D-LA), Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ), Robert Menendez (D-NJ) and, Barbara Mikulski (MD).

** Your help is needed

In order to have a hearing, more co-sponsors are needed.

Please call your Senator Toll free (1-877-762-8762). Ask him or her to become a co-sponsor of HJR 39.

Points you can make when calling…

  1. Thirty-five states have already ratified  Thus, asking them to "Start-over" takes us all back 40 years as if the ERA had never happened
  2. The fact that Senator  Durbin, Chairman of the Senate Judiciary where an ERA hearing will be held, signed-on from the beginning should be sufficient justification for your Senator to become a co-sponsor.
  3. With the War on Women going on, it is unacceptable for our Senators not to help us get a hearing for this approach to ratifying the ERA.
  4. Women and girls deserve the ERA after more than 200 years of fighting.
  5. The ERA is a matter of simple justice long overdue.

Visit the ERA Campaign Network Website: http://www.eracampaign.net/