World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Phyllis Schlafly

Article Id: WHEBN0000322375
Reproduction Date:

Title: Phyllis Schlafly  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Conservatism in the United States, Andrew Schlafly, Dames of Malta, Paleoconservatism, Barry Goldwater
Collection: 1924 Births, 20Th-Century American Writers, 20Th-Century Women Writers, 21St-Century American Writers, 21St-Century Women Writers, American Activists, American Anti-Communists, American Anti–illegal Immigration Activists, American Columnists, American People of Scottish Descent, American Roman Catholics, American Talk Radio Hosts, American Women in Politics, American Women Writers, Commentators, Conservatism in the United States, Critics of Feminism, Dames of Malta, Eagle Forum, Female Critics of Feminism, History of Women's Rights in the United States, Illinois Republicans, Living People, New Right (United States), People from Alton, Illinois, People from St. Louis, Missouri, Radcliffe College Alumni, Washington University in St. Louis Alumni, Washington University School of Law Alumni, Women Columnists
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Phyllis Schlafly

Phyllis Schlafly
Phyllis Schlafly in 2011
Born Phyllis McAlpin Stewart
(1924-08-15) August 15, 1924
St. Louis, Missouri, U.S.[1]
Occupation Political activist
Religion Roman Catholicism
Spouse(s) John Fred Schlafly, Jr. (deceased)
Children John, Bruce, Roger, Liza, Andrew, Anne

Phyllis Stewart Schlafly (; born Phyllis McAlpin Stewart, August 15, 1924) is an American conservative activist, author, and speaker and founder of the Eagle Forum. She is known for her staunch social and political conservatism, her opposition to modern feminism, and her successful campaign against the ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Her 1964 book A Choice, Not an Echo was issued in millions of copies as an attack on Republican Governor Nelson Rockefeller and the Eastern Republican Establishment. She co-authored books on national defense and was highly critical of arms-control agreements with the Soviet Union.[2] Schlafly founded the Eagle Forum in the 1970s and the Eagle Forum Education & Legal Defense Fund, St. Louis. As of 2013, she remained the president of both organizations and maintained a presence on the lecture circuit. Since 1967, she has published a newsletter, the Phyllis Schlafly Report.


  • Family 1
  • Early life 2
  • Activism and political efforts 3
    • Opposition to an Equal Rights Amendment 3.1
    • Broadcast media 3.2
  • Viewpoints 4
    • Equal Rights Amendment 4.1
    • Women's issues 4.2
    • United Nations and international relations 4.3
    • Judicial system 4.4
    • Presidential elections 4.5
    • Same-sex marriage 4.6
    • Immigration proposals 4.7
  • Honorary degree and protests 5
  • Published works 6
  • See also 7
  • References 8
  • Sources 9
  • Further reading 10
  • External links 11


Schlafly's great-grandfather Stewart, a Presbyterian, emigrated from Scotland to New York in 1851 and moved westward through Canada before settling in Michigan.[3] Her grandfather, Andrew F. Stewart, was a master mechanic with the Chesapeake & Ohio Railway.[4] Schlafly's father, John Bruce Stewart, was a machinist and salesman of industrial equipment, principally for Westinghouse. He became unemployed in 1932 during the Great Depression and could not find permanent work until World War II.[5] He was granted a patent in 1944 for a rotary engine.[6]

Schlafly's mother, Odile,[7] was the daughter of attorney Ernest C. Dodge. She attended college and graduate school. Before her marriage, she worked as a teacher at a private girls' school in St. Louis.[8] During the Depression Schlafly's mother went back to work as a librarian and a school teacher to support her family.

On October 20, 1949, when she was 25 years old, Phyllis married attorney John Fred Schlafly, Jr.; he died in 1993. He came from a well-to-do St. Louis family. His grandfather, August, emigrated in 1854 from Switzerland. In the late 1870s, the three brothers founded the firm of Schlafly Bros., which dealt in groceries, Queensware (dishes made by Wedgwood), hardware, and agricultural implements.[9] These Schlafly brothers later sold that business and concentrated on banking and other businesses that made them wealthy.[10] They were both active Catholics. Phyllis and her husband linked Catholicism to Americanism and often exhorted Catholics to join the anti-Communist crusade.[11]

Schlafly and her husband moved to Alton, Illinois, and had six children: John, Bruce, Roger, Liza, Andrew and Anne.[12] In 1992, their eldest son, John, was outed as gay by Queer Week magazine.[13][14] Schlafly acknowledged that John is gay, but stated that he embraces his mother's views.[13][15]

Schlafly is the aunt of conservative anti-feminist author Suzanne Venker; together they wrote The Flipside of Feminism: What Conservative Women Know—and Men Can't Say.[16]

Early life

Schlafly was christened Phyllis McAlpin Stewart and brought up as a Roman Catholic in St. Louis, Missouri, where she was born. During the Depression, Schlafly's father went into long-term unemployment, and her mother entered the labor market. Mrs. Stewart was able to keep the family afloat and maintained Phyllis in a Catholic girls' school.[17]

Schlafly started college early and worked as a model for a time. She earned her A.B. Phi Beta Kappa from Washington University, in St. Louis in 1944. She received a master of arts degree in Government from Radcliffe College in Cambridge, Massachusetts, in 1945. In her 1966 book, Strike From Space (1965), Schlafly notes that she worked as "a ballistics gunner and technician at the largest ammunition plant in the world" during World War II. She earned a J.D. from Washington University Law School in St. Louis in 1978.[5]

Activism and political efforts

Among Schlafly's early experiences in politics was working in the successful 1946 campaign of U.S. Representative Claude I. Bakewell.

In 1946, Schlafly became a researcher for the American Enterprise Institute and worked in the successful United States House of Representatives’ campaign of Claude I. Bakewell.[18]

In 1952, Schlafly ran for Congress as a Republican in the majority Democratic 24th congressional district of Illinois but lost to Democrat Charles Melvin Price.[19] Schlafly's campaign was low-budget and promoted heavily through the local print media, and local entrepreneurs John M. and Spencer Olin as well as Texas oil billionaire H. L. Hunt donated to her campaign.[20] She also attended her first Republican National Convention that year and continued to attend each following convention.[13] As part of the Illinois delegation of the 1952 Republican convention, Schlafly endorsed Robert A. Taft to be the party nominee for the presidential election.[21] At the 1960 Republican National Convention, Schlafly helped lead a revolt of "moral conservatives" against Richard Nixon's stance (as the New York Times puts it) "against segregation and discrimination."[22]

She came to national attention when millions of copies of her self-published book, A Choice, Not an Echo, were distributed in support of Goldwater's 1964 presidential campaign, especially in the hotly fought California GOP primary.[23] In it, Schlafly denounced the Rockefeller Republicans in the Northeast, accusing them of corruption and globalism. Critics called the book a conspiracy theory about "secret kingmakers" controlling the Republican Party.[24]

In 1967, Schlafly lost a bid for the presidency of the National Federation of Republican Women against the more moderate candidate Gladys O'Donnell of California. Outgoing NFRW president and future United States Treasurer Dorothy Elston of Delaware worked against Schlafly in the campaign.[25][26]

Schlafly joined the George E. Shipley.

Opposition to an Equal Rights Amendment

Symbol used on signs and buttons of ERA opponents

Schlafly became an outspoken opponent of the Selective Service registration.[27]

In 1972, when Schlafly began her efforts against the Equal Rights Amendment, it had already been ratified by 28 of the necessary 38 states. She organized a campaign to oppose further ratification. Five more states ratified ERA after Schlafly began her opposition campaign; however, five states rescinded their ratifications. The last state to ratify was

  • Official website
  • Eagle Forum official website
  • Works by or about Phyllis Schlafly in libraries (WorldCat catalog)
  • Phyllis Schlafly Collection (1972–1982) in the Western Historical Manuscript Collection, University of Missouri-St. Louis
  • Appearances on C-SPAN (1988–present)
    • interview with Schlafly, January 5, 2003In Depth
  • Domestic violence law abuses rights of men, Phyllis Schlafly, May 12, 2006
  • Feminism vs. Conservatism: The Great Debate, Phyllis Schlafly speech at Mount Holyoke College, April 26, 2007
  • Phyllis Schlafly Video produced by Makers: Women Who Make America

External links

  • Farber, David. The Rise and Fall of Modern American Conservatism: A Short History (2010) pp. 119–58
  • Hallow, Ralph Z. "Conservatives' first lady sparked pro-family effort." The Washington Times: October 7, 2005.

Further reading

  • Critchlow, Donald T. Phyllis Schlafly and Grassroots Conservatism: A Woman's Crusade Princeton University Press, 2005. 422 pp. ISBN 0-691-07002-4.
  • Ehrenreich, Barbara. 1983. The Hearts of Men: American Dreams and the Flight from Commitment New York: Anchor Books, an attack from the left
  • Felsenthal, Carol. The sweetheart of the silent majority: the biography of Phyllis Schlafly (Doubleday, 1981). ISBN 0-89526-873-6.


  1. ^ "Phyllis Schlafly". UXL Newsmakers ( 2005. Retrieved August 9, 2008. 
  2. ^ Chip Berlet and Matthew N. Lyons. 2000. Right–Wing Populism in America: Too Close for Comfort. New York: Guilford Press, p. 202.
  3. ^ profile of Andrew F. Stewart, in Men of West Virginia, Biographical Publishing Co., Chicago: 1903. pp. 157–158.
  4. ^ 1902–03 City Directory, Huntington, WV and 1910 Federal Census (Virginia), Alleghany County, Clifton Forge, ED126, Sheet 9A and note 1.
  5. ^ a b c Critchlow, Donald. "Founding Mother-Phyllis Schlafly and Grassroots Conservatism: A Woman's Crusade." Princeton University Press. pp. 422
  6. ^ Carol Felsenthal, The sweetheart of the silent majority: the biography of Phyllis Schlafly (Doubleday, 1981).
  7. ^
  8. ^ 1919 Gould’s St. Louis City Directory
  9. ^ The 1881 History of Marion & Clinton Counties, Illinois
  10. ^ Felsenthal biography
  11. ^ Critchlow 2005, pp. 42-43.
  12. ^ Critchlow 2005, pp. 31–33.
  13. ^ a b c Abraham, Yvonne (September 2, 2004). "At 80, Schlafly is still a conservative force – The Boston Globe". The Boston Globe. Archived from the original on May 22, 2009. 
  14. ^ The gay vice squad – QW's outing article about homosexuality of John Schlafly, son of pro-life advocate Phyllis Schlafly – Editorial
  15. ^ Blumenfeld, Laura (September 19, 1992). "'"Schlafly's Son, Out of the Closet; Homosexual Backs Mother's Views, Attacks `Screechy Gay Activists.  
  16. ^ Daum, Meghan (March 31, 2011). "Phyllis Schlafly: back on the attack". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved November 27, 2012. 
  17. ^ Ehrenreich, pp. 152–153
  18. ^ Critchlow, pp. 25–29.
  19. ^ Critchlow 2005, pp. 47–59.
  20. ^ Critchlow 2005, p. 55.
  21. ^ Critchlow 2005, p. 46.
  22. ^ Warner, Judith. She Changed America, New York Times, January 29, 2006.
  23. ^ Donald T. Critchlow, Phyllis Schlafly and Grassroots Conservatism (Princeton University Press, 2005), p 109
  24. ^ Berlet and Lyons. 2000. Right–Wing Populism in America, pp. 180, 202.
  25. ^ a b "Nation: Anti-ERA Evangelist Wins Again". Time. July 3, 1978. Archived from the original on January 21, 2011. 
  26. ^ Critchlow, Phyllis Schlafly and Grassroots Conservatism (2005), p. 138-159.
  27. ^  
  28. ^ a b Eilperin, Juliet. "New Drive Afoot to Pass Equal Rights Amendment". The Washington Post. Retrieved May 22, 2010. 
  29. ^ History
  30. ^ Homemakers Equal Rights Association (HERA) Records, 1971–1984, n.d. Women & Leadership Archives, Loyola University Chicago
  31. ^ Jane J. Mansbridge, Why we lost the ERA (University of Chicago Press, 1986) p 110.
  32. ^ Joan Williams (1999). Unbending Gender: Why Family and Work Conflict and What To Do About It. Oxford UP. p. 147. 
  33. ^ Judith Glazer-Raymo (2001). Shattering the Myths: Women in Academe. Johns Hopkins UP. p. 19. 
  34. ^ Gloria Steinem: If Bush Wins in 2004, "Abortion Will Be Criminalized" – A BuzzFlash Interview
  35. ^ Pia de Solenni on Phyllis Schlafly & Feminist Fantasies on National Review Online
  36. ^ "Phyllis Schlafly bio". Eagle Forum. Retrieved February 4, 2012. 
  37. ^ Rosalind Rosenberg (2008). Divided Lives: American Women in the Twentieth Century. p. 225. 
  38. ^
  39. ^ Lisa Levenstein, "'Don't Agonize, Organize!': The Displaced Homemakers Campaign and the Contested Goals of Postwar Feminism." 'Journal of American History (2014) 100#4: 1114-1138. online
  40. ^ Deborah L. Rhode (2009). Justice and Gender: Sex Discrimination and the Law. Harvard UP. pp. 66–67. 
  41. ^ Rosalind Rosenberg (2008). Divided Lives: American Women in the Twentieth Century. pp. 225–26. 
  42. ^ "Anti-ERA Evangelist Wins Again". Time. July 3, 1978. Archived from the original on January 21, 2011. 
  43. ^ Leonard, J.T. (March 29, 2007). "Schlafly cranks up agitation at Bates". Sun Journal. Retrieved December 28, 2010. (subscription required (help)). 
  44. ^ Bellafante, Ginia (March 30, 2006). "A Feminine Mystique All Her Own".  
  45. ^ "Anniversary: Roe v. Wade". The Washington Post. January 18, 2002. Archived from the original on June 10, 2011. 
  46. ^ Donald T. Critchlow, Phyllis Schlafly and Grassroots Conservatism, 2005, pp. 298–299
  47. ^ Donald T. Critchlow, Phyllis Schlafly and Grassroots Conservatism, 2005, p. 298
  48. ^ Bennett, Drake (November 25, 2007). "The amero conspiracy". The Boston Globe. Retrieved February 20, 2009. 
  49. ^ Phyllis Schlafly, "Communist Master Plan for 1961", Cardinal Mindszenty Newsletter, February 15, 1961
  50. ^  
  51. ^ "Schlafly: Obama Would Be Foolish to Leave Supreme Court Without a Veteran – WASHINGTON, April 9 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/". Retrieved June 2, 2013. 
  52. ^ Leith, Sam (January 17–18, 2009). "Obama's Oratory". Financial Times. Archived from the original on January 8, 2010. 
  53. ^ "Phyllis Schlafly Speaks Out, 5-15-08". YouTube. Retrieved June 2, 2013. 
  54. ^ Jacobs, Jennifer (December 4, 2011). "Conservative activist Phyllis Schlafly endorses Michele Bachmann". The Des Moines Register. Retrieved December 6, 2011. 
  55. ^ Pema Levy 8:43 PM EST, Friday February 3, 2012 (February 3, 2012). "Phyllis Schlafly Will Vote For Santorum | TPM LiveWire". Retrieved June 2, 2013. 
  56. ^ Schlafly, Phyllis (November 2009). "Feminists Psychoanalyze Themselves Again". The Phyllis Schlafly Report.  
  57. ^ Schlafly, Phyllis (September 1986). "A Short History of E.R.A". The Phyllis Schlafly Report.  
  58. ^ Sachs, Andrea (April 7, 2009). "Phyllis Schlafly at 84".  
  59. ^ Phyllis Schlafly Tells Republicans To Ignore Hispanic Voters, Focus On White People (VIDEO), Meredith Bennett-Smith, Huffington Post, May 30, 2013
  60. ^ Phyllis Schlafly's White Voter Mirage, Jordan Fabian, ABC News/Univision, May 29, 2013
  61. ^ a b "Wash-U chancellor apologizes for controversy, but Schlafly will still get honorary degree". Associated Press. May 15, 2008. Archived from the original on May 19, 2008. 
  62. ^ "Phyllis Schlafly Hon. Degree Sparks Wash U Spat, Law Prof Protest".  
  63. ^ "Students, faculty protest Schlafly honor".  
  64. ^ Brian Leiter's Law School Reports: Wash U Alumni Create Website to Oppose Award of Honorary Degree to Schafly
  65. ^ "Statement on Phyllis Schlafly's honorary degree". Retrieved May 14, 2008. 
  66. ^ a b "Schlafly Honor Protested". May 17, 2008. Retrieved June 2, 2013. 
  67. ^ "Students, faculty protest Schlafly honor".  
  68. ^ "Gang of Eight Increases Unemployment by Phyllis Schlafly on – A Syndicate of Talent". Retrieved June 2, 2013. 
  69. ^ Schlafly, Phyllis (August 26, 2006). "What is Left? What is Right? Does it Matter?".  


See also

  • A Choice Not an Echo: Updated and Expanded 50th Anniversary Edition (Regnery Publishing, 2014) ISBN 978-1621573159
  • Who Killed the American Family? (WND Books, 2014) ISBN 978-1938067525
  • No Higher Power: Obama's War on Religious Freedom (Regnery Publishing, 2012) ISBN 978-1621570127
  • The Flipside of Feminism: What Conservative Women Know -- and Men Can't Say (WorldNetDaily, 2011) ISBN 978-1935071273
  • Judicial Tyranny: The New Kings of America? – contributing author (Amerisearch, 2005) ISBN 0-9753455-6-7
  • The Supremacists: The Tyranny of Judges And How to Stop It (Spence Publishing Company, 2004) ISBN 1-890626-55-4
  • Feminist Fantasies, foreword by Ann Coulter (Spence Publishing Company, 2003) ISBN 1-890626-46-5
  • Turbo Reader (Pere Marquette Press, 2001) ISBN 0-934640-16-5
  • First Reader (Pere Marquette Press, 1994) ISBN 0-934640-24-6
  • Pornography's Victims (Crossway Books, 1987) ISBN 0-89107-423-6
  • Child Abuse in the Classroom (Crossway Books, 1984) ISBN 0-89107-365-5
  • Equal Pay for UNequal Work (Eagle Forum, 1984) ISBN 99950-3-143-4
  • The End of an Era (Regnery Publishing, 1982) ISBN 0-89526-659-8
  • The Power of the Christian Woman (Standard Pub, 1981) ISBN B0006E4X12
  • The Power of the Positive Woman (Crown Pub, 1977) ISBN 0-87000-373-9
  • Ambush at Vladivostok, with Chester Ward (Pere Marquette Press, 1976) ISBN 0-934640-00-9
  • Kissinger on the Couch (Arlington House Publishers, 1974) ISBN 0-87000-216-3
  • Mindszenty the Man (with Josef Vecsey) (Cardinal Mindszenty Foundation, 1972) ISBN B00005WGD6
  • The Betrayers (Pere Marquette Press, 1968) ISBN B0006CY0CQ
  • Safe Not Sorry (Pere Marquette Press, 1967) ISBN 0-934640-06-8
  • Strike from Space: A Megadeath Mystery (Pere Marquette Press, 1965) ISBN 80-7507-634-6
  • Grave Diggers (with Chester Ward) (Pere Marquette Press, 1964) ISBN 0-934640-03-3
  • A Choice Not an Echo (Pere Marquette Press, 1964) ISBN 0-686-11486-8

Schlafly's published works include:

Schlafly is the author of 23 books on subjects ranging from child care to phonics education. She writes a syndicated weekly newspaper column for Creators Syndicate.[68][69]

Published works

At the May 16, 2008, commencement ceremony, Schlafly was awarded a Doctor of Humane Letters degree. A protest to rescind Schlafly's honorary degree received support from faculty and students. During the ceremony, hundreds of the 14,000 attendees, including one third of the graduating students and some faculty, silently stood and turned their backs to Schlafly in protest.[66] In the days leading up to the commencement there were several protests regarding her degree award; Schlafly described these protesters as "a bunch of losers."[61] In addition, she stated after the ceremony that the protesters were "juvenile" and that, "I'm not sure they're mature enough to graduate."[66] As planned, Schlafly did not give any speech during the commencement ceremony, nor did any of the other honorees except for commencement speaker Chris Matthews.[67]

In bestowing this degree, the University is not endorsing Mrs. Schlafly's views or opinions; rather, it is recognizing an alumna of the University whose life and work have had a broad impact on American life and have sparked widespread debate and controversies that in many cases have helped people better formulate and articulate their own views about the values they hold.[65]

On May 1, 2008, the Board of Trustees of Washington University in St. Louis announced that Schlafly would be presented an honorary degree at the school's 2008 commencement ceremony. This was immediately met with objection by some students and faculty at the university who accused her of being anti-feminist and criticized her work on defeating the equal rights amendment.[61] Fourteen university law professors wrote in a complaint letter that Schlafly's career demonstrated "anti-intellectualism in pursuit of a political agenda."[62] While the Board of Trustees' honorary degree committee approved the honorees unanimously, five student members of the committee wrote to complain that they had to vote on the five honorees as a slate, in the final stage of the voting and feel the selection of Schlafly was a mistake.[63][64] In the days leading up to the commencement ceremony, Washington University Chancellor Mark S. Wrighton explained the university’s Board of Trustees' decision to award Schlafly’s degree with the following statement:

Honorary degree and protests

Schlafly believes the Republican Party should reject immigration reform proposals, and told Focus Today that it is a "great myth" that the GOP needs to reach out to Latinos in the United States. "The people the Republicans should reach out to are the white votes, the white voters who didn’t vote in the last election. The propagandists are leading us down the wrong path," she said. "There’s not any evidence at all that these Hispanics coming in from Mexico will vote Republican."[59][60]

Immigration proposals

Schlafly opposes same-sex marriage and civil unions: "[a]ttacks on the definition of marriage as the union of one man and one woman come from the gay lobby seeking social recognition of their lifestyle."[56] Linking the Equal Rights Amendment to LGBT rights and same-sex marriage played a role in Schlafly's opposition to the ERA.[57][58]

Same-sex marriage

On February 3 Schlafly announced that she would be voting for Rick Santorum in the 2012 Missouri Republican primary.[55]

Schlafly endorsed Michele Bachmann in December 2011 for the Iowa primary of the 2012 Republican presidential primaries, citing Bachmann's work against "ObamaCare" and deficit spending and her (Bachmann's) support of "traditional values."[54]

Schlafly did not endorse a candidate for the 2008 Republican presidential nomination, but she has spoken out against Mike Huckabee, who, she says, as governor left the Republican Party in Arkansas "in shambles". At the Eagle Forum, she has hosted U.S. Representative Tom Tancredo of Colorado, known for his opposition to illegal immigration. Before his election she criticized Barack Obama as "an elitist who worked with words".[52] During the election, she endorsed John McCain in an interview by saying: "Well, I'm a Republican, I'm supporting McCain". When asked about criticism of John McCain from Rush Limbaugh, she said: "Well, there are problems, we are trying to teach him".[53]

Presidential elections

Schlafly has been an outspoken critic of what she terms "activist judges", particularly on the Supreme Court. In 2005, Schlafly made headlines at a conference for the Judeo-Christian Council for Constitutional Restoration by suggesting that "Congress ought to talk about impeachment" of Justice Anthony Kennedy, citing as specific grounds Justice Kennedy's deciding vote to abolish the death penalty for minors.[50] In April 2010, shortly after John Paul Stevens announced his retirement as an associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, Schlafly called for the appointment of a military veteran to the Court, since Stevens had been a veteran and, with his retirement, the court was "at risk of being left without a single military veteran."[51]

Judicial system

In 1961, Schlafly wrote that "[arms control] will not stop Red aggression any more than disarming our local police will stop murder, theft, and rape."[49]

In late 2006, Schlafly collaborated with Jerome Corsi and Howard Phillips to create a website in opposition to the idea of a "North American Union", under which the United States, Mexico, and Canada would share a currency and be integrated in a structure similar to the European Union.[48]

Prior to the 1994 Congressional elections, Schlafly condemned [47]

In college in 1945, Schlafly applauded the establishment of the United Nations. Over the years, however, she has disdained the UN. On the 50th anniversary of the United Nations in 1995, Schlafly referred to it as "a cause for mourning, not celebration. It is a monument to foolish hopes, embarrassing compromises, betrayal of our servicemen, and a steady stream of insults to our nation. It is a Trojan Horse that carries the enemy into our midst and lures Americans to ride under alien insignia to fight and die in faraway lands." She opposed President Bill Clinton's decision in 1996 to send 20,000 American troops to Bosnia. Schlafly noted that Balkan nations have fought one another for 500 years and that the U.S. military should not be "policemen" of world trouble spots.[46]

United Nations and international relations

In 2007, while working to defeat a new version of the Equal Rights Amendment, she warned it would force courts to approve same-sex marriages and deny Social Security benefits for housewives and widows.[28]

She called Roe v. Wade "the worst decision in the history of the U.S. Supreme Court" and said that it "is responsible for the killing of millions of unborn babies".[45]

In a March 30, 2006, interview, Schlafly attributed improvement in women's lives during the last decades of the 20th century to labor-saving devices such as the indoor clothes dryer and paper diapers.[44]

In March 2007, Schlafly said in a speech at Bates College, "By getting married, the woman has consented to sex, and I don't think you can call it rape."[43]

Schlafly told Time magazine in 1978, "I have cancelled speeches whenever my husband thought that I had been away from home too much."[42]

Women's issues

According to historian Lisa Levenstein, who works largely in fields pertaining to women's history,[38] the feminist movement in the late 1970s briefly attempted a program to help older divorced and widowed women. Many widows were ineligible for Social Security benefits, few divorcees actually received any alimony, and after a career as a housewife, few had skills to enter the labor force. The program, however, encountered sharp criticism from young activists who gave priority to poor minority women rather than the middle class. By 1980, NOW downplayed the program as it focused almost exclusively on the ERA. Schlafly moved into the vacuum. She denounced the feminists for abandoning older middle-class widows and divorcees in need, and warned that ERA would equalize the laws for the benefit of man, stripping protections that older women urgently needed.[39] She said the ERA was designed for the benefit of young career women and warned that if men and women had to be treated identically it would threaten the security of middle-aged housewives with no current job skills. The ERA would repeal protections such as alimony and eliminate the tendency for mothers to obtain custody over their children in divorce cases.[40] Her argument that protective laws would be lost resonated with working-class women.[41]

Schlafly focused opposition to the ERA on traditional gender roles, such as only men should do the fighting in wartime. She pointed out that the amendment would eliminate the men-only draft requirement and guarantee the possibility that women would be subject to conscription and be required to have military combat roles in future wars. Defense of traditional gender roles prove to be a useful tactic. In Illinois her activists used traditional symbols of the American housewife. They took homemade bread, jams, and apple pies to the state legislators, with the slogans, "Preserve us from a congressional jam; Vote against the ERA sham" and "I am for Mom and apple pie."[37]

Equal Rights Amendment


In broadcast media, Schlafly provided commentaries on Chicago news radio station WBBM from 1973 to 1975, the CBS Morning News from 1974 to 1975, and then on CNN from 1980 to 1983. Then in 1983, Schlafly began creating syndicated daily 3-minute commentaries for radio In 1989, Schlafly began hosting a weekly radio talk show, Eagle Forum Live.[36]

Broadcast media

Critics of Schlafly see her advocacy against equal rights and her role as a working professional as a contradiction. Gloria Steinem and author Pia de Solenni, among others, have noted what they consider irony in Schlafly's role as an advocate for the full-time mother and wife, while being herself a lawyer, editor of a monthly newsletter, regular speaker at anti-liberal rallies, and political activist.[25][34][35] In her review of Schlafly's Feminist Fantasies, de Solenni writes that "Schlafly's discussion reveals a paradox. She was able to have it all: family and career. And she did it by fighting those who said they were trying to get it all for her.…Happiness resulted from being a wife and mother and working with her husband to reach their goals," not in helping other women and families reach their own.

As moderates, we thought we represented the forces of reason and goodwill but failed to take seriously the power of the family values argument and the single-mindedness of Schlafly and her followers. The ERA's defeat seriously damaged the women's movement, destroying its momentum and its potential to foment social change....Eventually, this resulted in feminist dissatisfaction with the Republican Party, giving the Democrats a new source of strength that when combined with overwhelming minority support, helped elect Bill Clinton to the presidency in 1992 and again in 1996.[33]

Joan Williams argues, "ERA was defeated when Schlafly turned it into a war among women over gender roles."[32] Historian Judith Glazer-Raymo argues:

Many people who followed the struggle over the ERA believed—rightly in my view—that the Amendment would have been ratified by 1975 or 1976 had it not been for Phyllis Schlafly's early and effective effort to organize potential opponents.[31]

The Equal Rights Amendment was narrowly defeated, having only achieved ratification in 35 of the 38 states needed (30, subtracting the five that rescinded ratification).[5] Experts agree that Schlafly was a key player. Political scientist Jane J. Mansbridge in her history of the ERA concludes:

[30] was formed.Homemakers' Equal Rights Association To counter Schlafly's Stop ERA campaign, the [29]

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Hawaii eBook Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.