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Equal Rights

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, . . .”

Thus begins the Declaration of Independence. The Founding Fathers were almost all white men of property and standing. There were no women directly involved, not all but most were white, several were immigrants. Nor record exists of gender preference. Many were Christian and most acknowledged that religion as being of significance. However, some key persons were deists and likely atheists. They recognized the necessity of separation of church and state.

In 1972 the Equal Rights Amendment was presented to the states for consideration. I witnessed the struggle over this issue up close as a Legislative Intern with the Kentucky Legislative Research Commission. Kentucky became the 35th and last state to ratify the amendment. It failed.

Sadly, it is needed now more than ever. You can’t succeed as a team unless everyone is a full member, accorded the privileges and responsibilities equal to all other members. It is that simple.

Despite stating it clearly, “all men” not just the ones we approve of we’ve never achieved anything close to equal rights for everyone. That must change.

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