To the Editor:
The majority of Americans believe the U.S. Constitution should include equal rights for men and women. Most believe that it already does. However, the Constitution does not prohibit discrimination against women.
The Constitution’s protections and guarantees were not meant to apply to women. That’s why the suffragettes fought for the 19th Amendment. Shortly after that victory, the fight for an Equal Rights Amendment to the Constitution began, and it continues to this day.
The Equal Rights Amendment would add to the Constitution the requirement that: “Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex.”
The ERA is an un-ratified amendment to the U.S. Constitution that passed in Congress in 1972. After its approval, the ERA was sent to the states to ratify, needing 38 states for ratification. The vote fell short; only 35 states ratified this amendment.
Meanwhile, the courts continue to deny women justice for pay discrimination, pregnancy discrimination and gender-based violence.
The documentary “Equal Means Equal” examines how women are treated in the United States today. Examining real-life stories and precedent-setting legal cases, the film uncovers how outdated and discriminatory attitudes influence a wide range of issues, pointing to the urgency of ratifying the Equal Rights Amendment.
The Franciscan Peace Center will host a free screening of “Equal Means Equal” on March 15 at 6:30 p.m. The event will take place at The Canticle, home of the Sisters of St. Francis, 841 13th Ave. N. in Clinton. For more information, visit www.Clinton Franciscans.com or call (563) 242-7611.
Laura Anderson, Marketing Director
Franciscan Peace Center, Clinton