The ERA - Bartholomew Booth Engl 1302.04 9/22/11 The ERA...

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Bartholomew Booth Engl 1302.04 9/22/11 The ERA “Equality of rights under law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on the account of sex.” For thousands of years, in most societies, the woman has often had fewer opportunities in life than men. It has been great debate in respect to the woman’s role in relationships, the household, the workplace, and in politics. Numerous religions and philosophical theories suggest that the female is subordinate unto its male counterpart. Throughout history there has been advocacy towards the empowerment of women. For instance the infamous Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) is significant in the struggle of female equality. On March 22, 1972 the proposed Twenty-Seventh Amendment was passed by congress. To become the Twenty Seventh Amendment of the United States the amendment has to be ratified by 38 states within a seven year period. Although a nationally distributed majority initially favored ratification, popular support for the ERA was unstable and, indeed, decline over time (Bolce, Maio, Muzzio). Twenty- two states ratified ERA in 1972 and eleven more by 1974. As support for the amendment grew, so did opposition: while two more states ratified, five states voted to rescind their ratification. The original deadline of March 1979 had passed; though Congress granted an extension period, no states ratified the ERA during this time. For more than three decades the ERA has been unsuccessful; here we explore reasons and whether or not the amendment should pass. In The Equal Rights Amendment as Status Politics Wilbur J. Scott suggests that the conflicting orientations towards the ERA come from perceptions that broader personal values, and those concerning gender and parental roles are in undesirable competition with alternative values in society. The presence of intense feelings both among those who support the issue and
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Bartholomew Booth Engl 1302.04 9/22/11 those who oppose it is shown to stem from a basic clash of values (Scott 499). Such conflict he calls “status politics”. This perspective gives the following explanation for the controversy:
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This document was uploaded on 10/28/2011 for the course ENGL 1302 at Sam Houston State University.

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The ERA - Bartholomew Booth Engl 1302.04 9/22/11 The ERA...

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