- What a mess last night at the Prince William County Board meeting, with regard to the resolution introduced by Supervisor Frank Principi in support of ratifying the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA).
First, see below for examples of the types of (crazy, hysterical) arguments against the ERA made by speaker after speaker – probably 75%-80% of the speakers last night were against the ERA – including former Del. “Sideshow Bob” Marshall (R-Theocracy) and others of his ilk. A few of the basic – and false and/or misleading and/or laughable – arguments made against the ERA were: 1) that it’s not necessary; 2) that it’s too late and that the ERA died decades ago; 3) that it will lead to a parade of horrors, including the “killing of babies” (aka, legal abortion, women’s right to choose how to control their own reproductive health decisions), same-sex bathrooms, boys being forced to wrestle girls, boys and girls sharing prison cells and locker rooms, the eradication of any legal/cultural/societal differences between men and women, transgenderism run amok, “Antifa” run amok, blah blah blah.
Fortunately, there WERE some articulate, well-informed speakers in SUPPORT of the ERA, such as Occoquan District Democratic candidate Kenny Boddye (see below), as well as Prince William School Board Vice Chair Lillie Jessie and Prince William County Board Democratic candidate Andrea Bailey. The question, though, is why there weren’t a LOT more pro-ERA speakers there last night, particularly given the fact that Prince William County is an increasingly diverse, “blue” county, at least for state and federal elections? Was anyone organizing for this? If not, why not? Where were Democratic elected officials from Prince William County last night? As Mike Beaty, who was there last night, wrote on Facebook, “Like the discrimination issues at the school board, we are out numbered by a church that did a drop off. We must do better and our representatives need to be HERE. ERA should be on ballot, for the county so the Minority don’t rule.”
Finally, here’s Supervisor Frank Principi (D) speaking in support of his resolution, which fails due to lack of a second. Which, of course, raises the basic question: why on earth would you bring a resolution, prompting hours of debate, when you don’t even have a SECOND, let alone the votes to get it passed? Baffling. Instead, we got to listen to Republican County Board member after Republican County Board member spew b.s. about the ERA (note: Democratic County Board Chair candidate Ann Wheeler commented on Facebook, “I can’t believe [Republican Supervisor Maureen Caddigan] had the audacity to promote the idea that the ‘Ratify The ERA’ issue is tied to reproductive rights. I am still appalled that Frank [Principi] couldn’t even get a second to consider the resolution. We need a change and it’s coming in 2019. I, for one, have had enough (a long time ago.)”)
In sum, last night’s “Citizens Time” and defeat of a pro-ERA resolution at the Prince William County Board of Supervisors meeting was a pathetic showing, and a perfect example of how NOT to operate when you’re trying to get something progressive accomplished. It also, of course, demonstrates the need for the Board of this deep-blue county (at least during federal and statewide elections) to represent the political beliefs and diversity of the county, which it most certainly does NOT at the present time. In November 2019, we need to make sure we flip this Board blue, big time.