I have three words I want to say: “It is time.”
By those three words, I am referring to passage of the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA).
To improve chances of its passage, I have introduced a resolution — which has bipartisan support — that would remove the deadline for state ratification of the ERA.
I believe there should never be a deadline when it comes to ensuring the equal rights of any American.
When the ERA passed Congress in 1972, it was required that the measure be ratified by three-forths of the states (38) within seven years.
That deadline was later extended by three years to 1982. Now, more than 20 years later, 35 states have ratified the amendment — three short of the required 38.
Congress has the authority to give the states another chance, and it is time that we do just that. I have introduced a joint resolution, which would remove the deadline for states’ ratification of the amendment. The U.S. Constitution contains no time limit for ratification of constitutional amendments.
In fact, the 27th Amendment to the Constitution prohibiting immediate congressional pay raises was ratified 203 years after its introduction.
Today, nearly half of the states have a version of the ERA written into their state constitutions. Maryland’s Constitution includes the passage: Equality of rights under the law shall not be abridged or denied because of sex.”
While I am pleased that so many states have made equal rights part of their constitution, it is time that the ERA be ratified to provide courts with clearer guidance in deciding discrimination cases.
I am very troubled by a statement made by Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia who said in a 2011 interview that the Constitution does not prohibit discrimination on the basis of sex. It is time that we make sure there can be no doubt or misunderstanding by the courts or any other body that discrimination based on sex will not be tolerated.
There is strong support for my ERA resolution, which has been endorsed by a wide variety of groups, including United 4 Equality, the National Council of Women’s Organizations, the National Organization for Women, the American Association of University Women, Federally Employed Women and the U.S. Women’s Chamber of Commerce.
I also am extremely pleased that the Senate co-sponsors of the resolution include: Senators Mark Kirk (R-IL), Barbara A. Mikulski (D-MD), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Tom Harkin (D-IA), Bernie Sanders (I-ME), Carl Levin (D-MI) Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Martin Henrich (D-NM), Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Kirsten E. Gillibrand (D-NY), Richard Durbin (D-IL), Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ), Christopher Murphy (D-CT), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Mary Landrieu (D-LA), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), and Mark Begich (D-AK). The resolution also has been introduced in the U.S. House by Congressman Rob Andrews (D-NJ).
Women have made tremendous advances in our nation, but America still has not realized its promise of equal protection under the law for men and women.
It is time we improve the chances of ERA passage by removing the deadline for state ratification of the amendment.
Cardin, a Democrat, is Maryland’s junior U.S. Senator.
I have three words I want to say: “It is time.”
Neighborhoods with strong identity and pride can be a big boost for any city. So it is good to see a Cumberland group working to improve areas all throughout the city.
Sick leave bill would benefit Marylanders
The Cumberland Times-News Feb. 27 article, “Chamber of Commerce opposes bills for required paid sick leave” (Page 1A) presented a one-sided account of a measure that could improve the lives and communities of more than 700,000 Marylanders.
Something on this list just might help you to save a soul
Every day, 18 veterans commit suicide. Every week, thousands of American children commit economic suicide by quitting school.
Money wasted on roundabout could have been spent in city
When the idea of a roundabout on the Route 220 off Interstate 68, that was the biggest mistake the state had made.
Who doesn’t love a mystery, especially when it involves gold.
Theories are springing up around a $10 million trove of gold coins found on their land by a Northern California couple who wisely have chosen to remain anonymous.
It came as a rather sad surprise to read recently that, regardless of how remorseful a dog appears to be when scolded, it has no idea why it is being admonished and probably doesn’t care (“Behaviorists: Dogs feel no shame despite the look,” March 1 Times-News, Page 4A).
There must be better ways to promote cycling
It is a very rare event for me to agree with any politician irrespective of their party. And here I find myself agreeing with Delegate Kevin Kelly (“Plan to establish bike lanes is both absurd and dangerous,” Feb. 27 Times-News).
Roundabout could have been the scene of a fatal accident
I am writing this letter because I am concerned with the safety of this fiasco Maryland calls a roundabout. I call it a death trap waiting to happen. (“Runaway SHA truck injures driver,” Feb. 26 Times-News, Page 3B)
Thanks to the doctors for the inspiration and care they give
National Doctors’ Day is held every year on March 30 in the United States to celebrate the contribution of physicians who serve our country by caring for its citizens. This year, March 30 falls on a Sunday.
The Motor Vehicle Administration is encouraging Marylanders to take advantage of its online services.
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