On Wednesday, pro-life students will be in Richmond, Virginia to speak out against the Equal Rights Amendment. You can find the details and information below.
Richmond, Virginia Lobby Day & News Conference on January 8.
SFLA’s Stephanie Stone to speak at 10 a.m. at the “Don’t Erase Women” Kick Off
Location: Pocahontas Building
900 East Main Street, Richmond, VA 23219
WASHINGTON D.C. (01-06-2020) – Students for Life of America and Students for Life Action President Kristan Hawkins, along with national pro-life and pro-family leaders including signers from the March for Life, LiveAction, Family Research Council, And then there were None, and Eagle Forum to name a few, sent a joint letter to members of the U.S. Congress and state legislators in Virginia this week in opposition to efforts to change the rules for passage of the Equal Rights Amendment and to force it through the Virginia legislature. The letter is being sent in advance of state-based votes expected in January and anticipating Congress taking up the effort in the new year.
The letter notes: “Let us be clear, laws protecting women’s interests will be undercut by the radical language of the ERA that strips away from women their unique place in the law. Not only will real protections be overwritten by this heavy-handed measure, the most profound change will be creating a constitutional foothold for abortion and introduction of vague language on ‘sex’ that may harm women’s unique interests.” (The full letter is below.)
Students for Life of America actively opposed the measure when Virginia last took it up, but in light of the change in the legislature, the ERA is expected to come up quickly. SFLA is also working in South Carolina and Utah, where lawmakers are considering the measure.
As Hawkins noted in a recent op-ed at the Washington Times: “In 1972, Congress passed the ERA as a constitutional amendment, setting a deadline of ratification by March 1979 from three-fourths of the states (38). However, only 35 states voted in favor by that deadline, and since then five states voted to rescind their ratification. Rather than admitting defeat, Congress extended the deadline to June 1982. While some argue that extension wasn’t legal, it became a moot point as the measure failed again … The issue of abortion animates this debate as many believe the future of Roe v. Wade is in doubt given the shaky legal foundation on which rests. Roe legally allows abortion through all nine months, for any reason and at and sometimes with taxpayer funding. Should Roe v. Wade be overturned, the issue of abortion would be returned to the states, where people could have a voice and a vote on policy that today is decided by a handful of judges. Unless there is a new foothold in the Constitution through the ERA.”
“When Roe falls, the issue of abortion will return to the states where voters finally with have a voice and a vote on life-related policy,” said Hawkins. “The Pro-Life Generation will actively oppose the ERA as it really is a Trojan Horse for abortion, an attempt to create a Constitutional foothold to replace Roe.”
To learn more about SFLA’s opposition to the Everything Related to Abortion act, visit https://www.exposeera.org
For media interviews, e-mail Kristi at [email protected]
Students for Life of America is the nation’s largest, pro-life, youth organization. Headquartered in Fredericksburg, VA, SFLA serves more than 1200 groups on college, universities and high school campuses in all 50 states.
Protect Women: Reject ERA
The Everything Related to Abortion Act.
Dear Members of the U.S. Congress and Virginia Legislature,
In the name of ensuring women have equal opportunity, a worthy goal, the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) is once-again advancing in the U.S. House of Representatives and the Virginia Legislature, promoted by those with hidden, extremist agendas. Let us be clear, laws protecting women’s interests will be undercut by the radical language of the ERA that strips away from women their unique place in the law. Not only will real protections be overwritten by this heavy-handed measure, the most profound change will be creating a constitutional foothold for abortion and introduction of vague language on “sex” that may harm women’s unique interests.
A vote in favor of ratifying the ERA or for manipulating the decade’s old deadline would amount to a victory for the abortion industry. We have and will continue to support policies designed to meet women’s actual needs, but today, we call for a NO vote on the ERA, to protect women’s status protected by laws already in place.
The ERA specifically states that a person’s sex cannot be considered in making a legal preference. With that in mind, consider the many protections designed to assist women that would be impacted and harmed including the Equal Pay Act of 1963; the Civil Rights Act of 1964; the Equal Employment Opportunity Act of 1972; the Federal Minimum Wage Act of 1974, and the Pregnancy Nondiscrimination Act of 1964. In fact, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg wrote in Sex Bias in the U.S. Code that the ERA will impact 800 federal laws. The financial impact on women is incalculable, and ERA will do nothing to focus attention on sexual crimes against women.
This is not the Equal Rights Amendment, but rather the Everything Related to Abortion Act, as this measure will in fact do what Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton do not — create an actual place in our Constitution on which to hang the interest of the abortion industry.
Abortion advocates including those at NARAL, the ACLU, and Planned Parenthood, have argued in state courts that state-ERA laws require abortion on demand with taxpayer funding. In the states of New Mexico and Connecticut, courts have agreed that abortion should be covered by taxpayers based on their reading of state ERA language similar to what has been proposed. At EqualRightsAmendment.org a Who’s Who of abortion industry voices are all in unison about their desire for this to pass.
And recently, a NARAL e-mail to supporters said that the organization wanted the ERA ratified because it would enshrine a right to abortion in the Constitution. In an e-mail sent in March 2019, their chief lobbyist wrote, “In order to protect our reproductive freedom today it’s essential we pass the newly re-introduced bill to ratify the ERA. With its ratification, the ERA would reinforce the constitutional right to abortion by clarifying that the sexes have equal rights, which would require judges to strike down anti-abortion laws because they violate both the constitutional right to privacy and sexual equality.”
The abortion lobby consistently pushes a narrative that camouflages the many dangers of abortion. But pregnancy is not a disease cured by abortion, requiring that preborn life be ended in the name of female equality.
The abortion industry, from day one, has used the courts to force an agenda that compassionate voters do not embrace. And even as legislators are asked to waste a valuable time on the ERA, this matter will have to go to the courts as the deadline for ratifying ERA passed decades ago, twice, and as five states have since voted to rescind their ratification of the ERA.
Rather than empowering women, the far-reaching ERA empowers courts, Congress, and regulatory agencies among others to decide that a pet political project of theirs should have status and power of the law. Ironically, the arguments used for ERA in the 1970s are moot today as laws requiring equal pay, forbidding discrimination by sex or barring entry into schools, the workplace or public life have long since been enacted.
The issue today is not the absence of laws protecting women; the issue is a radical agenda of empowering abortionists with new, constitutional cover to replace the crumbling legal foundation of Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton. When Roe and Doe are reversed, the issue of abortion would return to the states where voters could have a voice and a vote on abortion policy … unless a new legal hook for abortion can be created through the ERA.
We believe that missing all the deadlines and failing to follow the lawful constructs of the political process are reason enough close the chapter on the ERA.
The Everything Related to Abortion Act should remain an historical footnote in the story of efforts to advance women’s true needs in this country. Should the ERA advance, a framework of laws and programs helping women would be at risk; a new “right” to abortion would be inserted in the Constitution, and confusing language will result in policies and mandates none of us can foresee today. We the undersigned urge you to vote NO on ERA and YES to matters that truly help empower women to realize their dreams and fulfill their potential, women born and preborn, who have moved past the troubling agenda being pushed on the legislature today.
President of Students for Life of America
Anne Schlafly Cori
Chairman, Eagle Forum
CEO, And Then There Were None
President, Concerned Women for America
President, March for Life
President and Founder of Live Action
Cathy Ruse, JD
Senior Legal Fellow, Family Research Council
Director of Life, Culture and Women’s Advocacy
President & CEO, 40 Days for Life
President, Family Foundation of Virginia
Executive Director, Democrats For Life of America
Bethany and Ryan Bomberger
Founders, The Radiance Foundation
Executive Director, Right to Life of Greater Cincinnati
Allan Parker Jr
President, The Justice Foundation
Walter B. Hoye II
Children First Foundation
President, Crossroads Pro-Life
Global Advisor, Operation Outcry
Founder, Missouri Blacks for Life
President, National Black Pro-Life Union
Deacon Georgette Forney
President, Anglicans for Life
Co-Founder, Silent No More Awareness Campaign
Executive Director, Human Life Alliance
John Paul Moran
Founder & CEO, Grand Opportunity USA “GOUSA”