Document 4: Iowa ERA Coalition, "When You Know the Facts About the Iowa Equal Rights Amendment, There Is Only One Choice," 1980. Folder: Advertising Proposals -- 1980, Box 6, Iowa ERA Coalition Collection, Iowa Women's Archives, University of Iowa Libraries, Iowa City, Iowa.

Introduction

       The following document is an incomplete draft of a brochure, produced and distributed by the Iowa ERA Coalition in 1980, which illustrates several of the Coalition's objectives. Like other Iowa ERA Coalition literature, this document reiterates the campaign's claims for what the ERA will and will not accomplish. Additionally, this brochure includes advice about the voting process, and a form inviting the public to donate to the Coalition's ERA campaign. The final page of the brochure lists groups supporting and opposing the ERA.  Included among the supporters were, the American Lutheran Church, the United Church of Christ, the Democratic Party of Iowa, the Republican Party of Iowa, the N.A.A.C.P., the Iowa Bar Association, and the Iowa AFL-CIO Auxiliaries. The Communist Party, the Ku Klux Klan, the Iowa Association of Evangelicals, the National Right-to-Life Committee, and the Eagle Forum were listed among the groups opposed to the ERA. 

       WHEN YOU KNOW
THE FACTS ABOUT THE
IOWA EQUAL RIGHTS AMENDMENT,
THERE IS ONLY ONE CHOICE...

 

THE TOP QUESTION ON NOVEMBER 4 WILL BE:

“TO ENSURE THAT THE STATE SHALL NOT DENY OR RESTRICT THE
EQUALITY OF RIGHTS UNDER THE LAW ON THE BASIS OF GENDER.”

SHALL THE ABOVE AMENDMENT BE ADOPTED?

YOU WILL DECIDE.

 

THE IOWA EQUAL RIGHTS AMENDMENT

       A YES VOTE IS A VOTE TO MAKE IOWA A STATE OF EQUALITY
       A NO VOTE IS A VOTE AGAINST EQUALITY FOR ALL

THE FACTS MAKE THAT CLEAR...

Here are the facts...

The Iowa Equal Rights Amendment

All men and women are, by nature, free and equal and have certain inalienable rights -- among which are those of enjoying and defending life and liberty, acquiring, possessing and protecting property, and pursuing and obtaining safety and happiness. Neither the state nor any of its political subdivisions shall, on the basis of gender, deny or restrict the equality of rights under the law. (Proposed amendment to Section 1, Article 1, Constitution of the State of Iowa. New language in black.)

  
IT WILL STRENGTHEN LAWS THAT GUARANTEE EQUAL PAY FOR EQUAL WORK, EQUAL CREDIT FOR MEN AND WOMEN, EQUAL OPPORTUNITY IN EDUCATION.

IT WILL GIVE YOU A PERMANENT GUARANTEE OF EQUALITY.

The Iowa Equal Rights Amendment means that equality of rights for men and women under the law will be protected as a basic right of all Iowans, just like freedom of speech and religion. It is a guarantee for you and your children and their children.

IT WILL ELIMINATE THE DISCRIMINATORY LAWS THAT STILL EXIST.

The Civil Rights Act of Iowa allows discrimination on the basis of sex in insurance, retirement benefits, and pensions.  The Iowa Equal Rights Amendment will change that.

IT WILL PROTECT NON-DISCRIMINATORY LAWS FROM BEING CHANGED.

In 1979, a bill was introduced into the Iowa Legislature to allow discrimination on the basis of sex in vacations, sick leave, disability, medical benefits and other area.  Attempts have also been made to repeal the Iowa inheritance tax law, which allows a woman to claim part of the property as hers when her husband dies.  The Iowa Equal Rights Amendment would mean that these laws could never be changed.

 

 

IT WILL STRENGTHEN LAWS WHICH RECOGNIZE THE ECONOMIC VALUE OF WORK DONE BY WOMEN IN THEIR HOMES.

Iowa laws already recognize that the work a woman does in the home is worth a lot.  In inheritance settlements, dissolution of marriage, and child support questions, the courts take this work into account. The Iowa Equal Rights Amendment will make sure this continues.

IT WILL BE A CLEAR STANDARD TO LIMIT GOVERNMENT INTERFERENCE IN YOU LIFE.

The Iowa Equal Rights Amendment will prevent the government from telling you what you can and cannot do – just because you are a man or a woman.  It will let you and your family make decisions about how you want to live your lives.

IT IS A STATE’S RIGHTS ISSUE.

The Iowa Equal Rights Amendment will only change state laws. It is our way of saying that we Iowans want our state to be a state of equality.  It will only affect areas covered by state and local governments. Federal laws like the draft and social security will not be covered by the Iowa Equal Rights Amendment.

The choice is clear     
IT WILL NOT ALLOW HOMOSEXUALS TO MARRY OR ADOPT CHILDREN.

In the state of Washington, which has a state Equal Rights Amendment, the Supreme Court ruled in 1974 that the ERA did not make their marriage statute, which says that marriage is between a man and a woman, invalid..  The Iowa Equal Rights Amendment bars discrimination on the basis of biological sex, not sexual preference.

IT WILL NOT CAUSE WOMEN TO BE DRAFTED.

The State of Iowa does not draft people.  The Iowa Equal Rights Amendment only affects state laws.  The draft and registration are laws of the U.S. Congress, not Iowa.

IT WILL NOT AFFECT ABORTION LAWS IN ANY WAY.

Abortion laws are based on the U.S. Supreme Court decision on abortion.  The Iowa Equal Rights Amendment won’t affect that.  Nor will it require state funding of abortions.  That is based on economic grounds, not the gender of the person involved.

 

IT WILL NOT FORCE WOMEN TO WORK OUTSIDE THE HOME IF THEY DON’T WANT TO.

This is a personal decision, not a legal decision.  It will still be up to each person what role he or she wants to take in society.

IT WILL NOT MAKE RESTROOMS, PRISONS, AND PUBLIC FACILITIES COED.

The state will still retain the right to require separate toilets, prisons, and sleeping quarters for men and women.  This right is protected under the privacy doctrine of the U.S. Constitution.

IT WILL NOT MAKE HUSBANDS REFUSE TO SUPPORT THEIR WIVES.

Under Iowa law since 1857, husbands and wives are already equally responsible for the support of the family.  The woman’s work in the home is regarded as her support of the family.  Besides, husbands don’t support their families because of laws – they do it because of love.  The Iowa Equal Rights Amendment won’t change that.

HERE IS HOW YOU VOTE ON THE IOWA EQUAL RIGHTS AMENDMENT ON NOVEMBER 4,

The amendment will appear on the top right hand corner of your voting booth.
This is the actual ballot wording.

(see attached)

 

 

 

THESE ARE THE SUPPORTERS OF EQUALITY    THESE ARE THE OPPONENTS OF EQUALITY

American Association of University
Women, Iowa Division

(see attached)

 

(see attached)

 

THE DECISION IS YOURS. WILL IOWA BE A STATE OF EQUALITY?
VOTE YES NOVEMBER 4, 1980

IOWA ERA COALITION, 315 E. 5th Street, Des Moines, Iowa 50309 -- 515-244-0012

I want to help make Iowa a state of Equality.

Enclosed is a contribution of $___________________________

I would like to contribute my time.
Please call me at (phone number)

NAME ____________________________ COUNTY _______________

ADDRESS ____________________ CITY___________ ZIP __________

THESE ARE SUPPORTERS OF EQUALITY

American Association of University Women - Iowa Division
American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees - Council 61
American Lutheran Church, Iowa District
Church Women United in Iowa
Common Cause of Iowa
Communication Workers of America
Democratic Party of Iowa
Des Moines Presbytery of the United Presbyterian Church in the U.S.A.
Iowa AFL-CIO Auxiliaries Iowa Bar Association
Iowa Conference of the United Methodist Church
Iowa Children's and Family Services
Iowa Conference of Teamsters
Iowa Consumer League
Iowa Federation of Business and Professional Women
Iowa Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO
Iowa Higher Education Association
Iowa Home Economics Association
Iowa Inter-Church Consortium for Governmental Concerns
Iowa Libertarian Party
Iowa Library Association
Iowa Nurses Association
Iows National Organization for Women
Iowa State Education Association
Iowas State Education Association, Women's Caucus
Iowa United Auto Workers
Iowa Women's Political Caucus
Junior League of Cedar Rapids, Des Moines and Waterloo
Justice for Women in the Church
N.A.A.C.P. Lutheran Church Women, Iowa Synod
National Association of Bank Women
National Association of Social Workers, Iowa Chapter
Polk County Women's Attorneys
Republican Party of Iowa
United Church of Christ
Women's Programs at Drake University
University Committee on Women, Iowa State University
YWCA of Ames, Iowa State University, Blackhawk County, Greater Des Moines

THESE ARE THE OPPONENTS OF EQUALITY

Communist Party
Eagle Forum
ERA Question Committee
Iowa Association of Evangelicals -
Iowa Conservative Union
Iowans for Family Life -
Iowans for Life
Iowans for Moral Education
Iowans for Responsible Legislation
Iowa Women Against the ERA
John Birch Society
Ku Klux Klan
Liberty Lobby
National Pro-Family Coalition -
National Right-to-Life Committee
National Stop-ERA
North East Iowa Coalition to Stop ERA

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