The U.S. Constitution still does not protect equal rights for women.
The Equal Rights Amendment has a long and difficult history. The opposition of the 1980's focused on its capacity for destroying the American family. Today, opponents worry protecting these rights will limit allowable restrictions on abortion. Abby Gardner’s article in Glamour (June 2018) traces that history, making the case “The ERA is back in the news—This is Why You Should be Paying Attention
The energy of the Me Too and Times Up movements with a record number of women running for and holding office has worked to put the ERA back in motion again. It looked like the required 38 state ratifications might finally come through when Illinois ratified the amendment last summer. 37 states done, 1 to go.
In January of this year, the Virginia House of Delegates squashed
an effort to become the 38th state ratification. At that time, Constitutional scholar Garrett Epps wrote about the many paths to ratification
. Don’t be fooled into thinking the Equal Rights Amendment gets any easier after the 38th state comes through. This somehow makes the funny story about the 27th Amendment relevant to today too.
The deep and dangerous roots of anti-Semitism have crept into modern politics and we may not be faring any better this time.
The news cycles about Congresswoman Ilhan Omar, her politics and her tweets have run fast from one incident to another. It’s easy to conclude that there must be something there without having much of an idea about what that something might be. This uncertainty has yielded easy criticism of the congresswoman for making rookie mistakes.
Rebecca Vilkomerson offers a persuasive op-ed in Newsweek, “I’m Jewish and I find the hypocrisy of Republican Islamophobes hounding Ilhan Omar breathtaking
.” She wades into the difficult politics of U.S. support for Israel and the many layers of who and what gets called out for anti-Semitism.
She explains why it’s important to understand this moment in our politics:
"It has never been more important to be able to distinguish between the critique—even the harshest critique—of a state’s policies (Israel,) and discrimination against a people (Jews.) Israel does not represent all Jews. Not all Jews support Israel. Speaking out for Palestinian human rights and their yearning for freedom is in no way related to anti-Semitism, though the Israeli government does its best to obscure that."
Making its own argument, New Republic says it all in its opening sentence
, “History has been curling back lately in the most uncomfortable ways.” To be careful with that history and today's politics, you have to take the time to read Omar in her own words
The President has the power to create emergencies (not just declare them) and there are places safe from partisan polarization.
Ok. Cooked this one up simply to relay two excellent pieces of work by women doing the deep dive into the research. Elizabeth Goiten has written the most comprehensive answer to the question of what President Trump can do with emergency powers
. Follow links in the article to see the 123 statutory provisions that take effect with a declaration. 😮
While that piece might drive you to drink, this one might bring hope. Amanda Ripley looked at the data to find the least politically prejudiced place in America
. Then she packed her bags and fled D.C. She tells you all about the nice people of Watertown, N.Y. (and links to a list of county rankings by levels of "political comity" so you can look yours up). It may not be the right move for everyone.