Fuel Our Critical Reporting on the Equal Rights Amendment

Thanks to 2019 victories by feminist candidates in the Virginia state legislative elections, this past November we flipped the state’s House and Senate from red to blue. With these victories, the Virginia General Assembly has just voted to become the 38th and final state needed to ratify the ERA.

48 years after the Equal Rights Amendment was passed by Congress and sent to the states for ratification, we are right now on the verge of adding the ERA to the U.S. Constitution! But the drive to finally add the ERA to the U.S. Constitution is far from over.

We must prepare to fight as never before—the final fight to finish the job. That’s why we’re writing to ask you to become a Ms. Partner.

Even after we won ratification in Virginia, we’re in for an additional fight from the right-wing. That’s why our request is so urgent. Your contribution will enable us to plan and budget for the historic, final campaign to win the ERA.

Our Partners are a select, dedicated group of Ms. readers and activists who commit to making a special gift to drive our work and our special coverage of the ongoing fight for the ERA.

In 1972, Congress added an arbitrary ratification timeline of 1979 to the preamble of the ERA, later changing it to 1982—but they did not add a timeline to the actual text of the Amendment that 38 states have already voted to ratify. This means, according to some of the most respected constitutional law scholars in the country, that the timeline is not binding.

Now that Virginia has ratified, the fight will move to Congress—and the courts to ensure that the arbitrary timeline that was set by anti-ERA forces in Congress does not become an excuse to block the amendment.

As a reader of Ms., you already know that we provide a critically needed, respected and trustworthy feminist source for news, analysis, research and strategies. Now, as we prepare for the final drive for the ERA—a drive that occurs during what arguably will be the most important election of our lifetimes—we are determined to ensure Ms. remains strong and independent.

In the 2020 elections, feminists have the power not only to determine the future of the ERA, but also determine the next President, decide the makeup of the Congress, select state legislators and shape the national agenda. With your help, we can boost our already significant roster of election experts, analysts and pollsters to provide critical analysis and reporting.

Our coverage of women’s and men’s views on issues in the 2020 elections will go beyond simple reporting on the numbers. We’ll provide important context and research-based evidence to both explain the gender gap and magnify the power of feminist and social justice issues at the polls.

Ms. intends to ensure that feminists’ views on the ERA and on the problems facing the country and the nation’s political leadership are not side-lined. We can only meet these and other challenges that lie ahead in 2020 with your partnership.

Ms. Partners help us continue to challenge the status quo, start new trends, change laws and promote feminist ideas. We now need Ms. more than ever—and, more than ever, Ms. needs you as a Partner. Our Partners make it possible for Ms. to keep our readers informed, both in print and online.

When you become a Ms. Partner, we’ll commemorate your devotion to equality by listing your name in a special section of our special 48th Anniversary Edition this fall.

Every day, we offer fresh perspectives on national and global politics, culture, media, health, law and life—and with the support of dedicated partners like you, Ms. can remain fiercely independent and on the frontlines. Ms. is sustained by our readers and supporters—not by advertisers. And because Ms. doesn’t take commercial ads, you never have to worry that we will shy away from telling it like it is.

Ms. is more than a magazine—it’s a key part of the women’s movement and a trusted information source. Your Ms. Partner donation is tax-deductible and ensures Ms. can continue to meet the challenges of these times.

With you as our Partner, we will never go back. And we will never give up.

About and

Eleanor Smeal is president of the Feminist Majority Foundation and publisher of Ms. She appears frequently on television and radio, testifies before Congress on a wide variety of women’s issues and speaks to diverse audiences nationwide on a broad range of feminist topics. For over two decades, she has played a leading role in both national and state campaigns to win women’s rights legislation and in a number of landmark state and federal court cases for women’s rights.
Katherine Spillar is the executive editor of Ms., where she oversees editorial content and the Ms. in the Classroom program.