The Equal Rights Amendment Finally Arrives
by Roy Speckhardt
Executive Director, American Humanist Association
Today's political climate makes it abundantly clear that American women need to have their rights and freedoms permanently protected through an amendment to the U.S. Constitution. New laws and regulations being pushed by the Religious Right are an open violation of every woman's basic dignity by forcing them into a position where they can be legally mistreated.
Several bills were recently introduced by religious political extremists in Congress to restrict women's access to necessary health services, such as the one introduced by Senator Roy Blunt which would have exempted employers from providing contraceptive care to their employees for religious reasons. While Sen. Blunt was unsuccessful, additional legislation would defund reproductive health services and elevate the rights of a fetus over that of a woman. And in Wisconsin several bills were just passed that repealed the state's 2009 Equal Pay Enforcement Act and degraded health services for women. Members of the Religious Right have cheered at these and other measures which are predicated on an assumption that women are inferior.
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