Page 2-Tuesday, July 11, 1978-The Michigan Daily
Locals converge in D.C. for ERA rally
By ELIZABETH SLOWIK
Nearly 150 Ann Arbor feminists con-
verged in Washington D.C. Sunday with
an estimated 100,000 women's rights
sympathizers from across the nation to
join the National Equal Rights Amen-
dment (ERA) march for a day of mar-
ching, speeches, unification, and sun-
"It was absolutely fantastic," said
Eva McNiece, member of the National
Organization for Women's (NOW) local
chapter. "The output of women was
something I never expected to see."
ERA SUPPORTERS marched 24
abreast in 96-degree heat from the
Washington Monument down Con-
stitution Ave. to the lawn of the Capitol
in a parade that lasted several hours.
The WashtenawNOW chapter, led by a
10-foot wide banner that said
"Washtenaw County Michigan -ERA
- Yes," was one of the first groups to
lead off the parade. Once on the lawn,
speakers, including Gloria Steinem,
Betty Friedan, Bella Abzug, Marlo
Thomas, Jean Stapleton, and various
members of Congress, called for exten-
sion of the ERA deadline and
"Until you've heard the roar of that
many people, you can't believe it," said
The speeches culminated with
comedian Dick Gregory's proclamation
that he will not eat until the ERA is
"IT WAS crowded, exciting," said
Ava Brown, another local feminist. "A
great deal of positive spirit was on
"It was really enthusiastic," said
Madge Patterson. "I think we're going
to get the extension."
Kate Roney, another local feminist,
estimated the number of men at 5,000 to
10,000. She said 325 organizations were
Tuesday.July 11, 1978
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represented, including religious, law,
and university organizations.
Brown said minorities were not well
represented at the rally.
THE WASHTENAW NOW chapter
organized a committee two months ago
to recruit marchers. The committee
tacked up posters, planned radio
broadcasts, and sent information to in-
The 39 spaces on the Ann Arbor
group's chartered bus were quickly
booked, so other marchers picked up
buses in Detroit and Toledo, to get to
Washington. Some marchers organized
Some ERA supporters remained in
Washington yesterday to lobby for an
extension of the ERA deadline. The
ERA needs ratification by three more
states by March, 1979, to become part of
the Constitution, and supporters are
trying to extend the ratification period.
Supporters were to meet with
legislators, including Rep. Carl Pursell
"People are always saying the
movement is dead, reached its peak.
Just the fact that they could pull in this
many people shows there's a lot of sup-
port," said Roney. "The issue is not
"It's not a one-shot deal," said Pat-
terson. "We'll do anything that can be
done to see that it succeeds."
Off0iej als say
WASHINGTON (AP) - Officials in
Congress say prospects are dim for a
seven-year extension of the proposed
Equal Rights Amendment (ERA),
despite a weekend rally at the Capitol
by tens of thousands of ERA backers.
Legislation to give states until 1986 to
approve the proposed amendment is
stuck in the House Judiciary Commit-
tee, where it is well short of the support
A COMPANION bill is in a Senate
judiciary subcommittee, where its fate
See OFFICIALS, Page 14
IN AursIOn T Olocal parucpants, marcners for ute ERA in washington Sun-
day included such notables as Bella Abzug, Gloria Steinem, Dick Gregory and
Betty Friedan. The march drew crowds estimated from 50,000 to 100,000 to urge
Congress to extend the time for ratification of the amendment.
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