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Question 1, Equal Rights Amendment, erases and silences biological women (Photo: Twitter)

OPINION: Ballot Question 1, The ERA That ERAses Women

Kelly: ‘It will completely revolutionize constitutional law and help us jumpstart the movement for the federal ERA’

By Megan Barth, November 7, 2022 2:36 pm

According to Ms. Magazine, “Advocates are fighting to make Nevada the 27th state by passing the most comprehensive ERA in the country. If passed, the Nevada ERA would be the first time that an equal rights amendment explicitly protects people on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression.”

“That’s revolutionary in the United States,” says Kate Kelly, the Nevada organizer for Vote Equality, a nationwide grassroots organization that promotes equal rights for all. Kelly notes that no enacted ERA in the U.S. explicitly covers sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression.

In 2019, the Nevada legislature became the first female-majority state legislature in the nation with women holding 52 percent of the seats. That year, [Pat] Spearman joined with the female Majority Leader Senator Nicole Cannizzaro to sponsor the legislation to put the Nevada ERA on the ballot. Two years later, in 2021, women won a whopping 60 percent of seats in the legislature and passed the second reading of the ERA measure.

“It makes a huge difference to have feminist women in office. And it makes a huge difference to have a feminist Majority Leader in your legislature,” said Kelly.

“I think this is the most important thing on any ballot in November in the entire country, because it’s a permanent amendment. It will completely revolutionize constitutional law and help us jumpstart the movement for the federal ERA,” said Kelly.

Students of Professor Autoosa Kojoori at the College of Southern Nevada have volunteered in droves after she gave them extra credit to work on the ballot initiative. “They have written hundreds of handwritten postcards and marched with us. They’re doing a huge amount of work,” said Kelly.

What does Question 1 mean for Nevadans?

Ballot Question 1 would expand the number of protected classes included in the federal Equal Rights Amendment from one to 10. Whereas the federal proposal included protections based on sex alone, Question One proposes to insert the following clause into Section 1 of the Nevada constitution:

“Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by this State or any of its political subdivisions on account of race, color, creed, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, disability, ancestry or national origin.”

Organizations arguing in favor of Question 1 included the American Civil Liberties Union of Nevada, the Progressive Leadership Alliance of Nevada, the Nevada Women’s Lobby, and the Sierra Club, A large and diverse coalition of groups called Nevadans for Equal Rights, which includes Nevada NOW, Planned Parenthood, Silver State Equality, Battle Born Progress, and others, support the amendment.

Organizations opposing Question One include the Alliance Defending FreedomNevada Families for Freedom, and the Pro-Life League of Nevada.

In a statement to The Globe, Janine Hanson, Chairman of Stop Question 1 ERA, said:

“Question 1 will be devastating to Nevada’s women and girls. Biological men and boys will be allowed to complete against them in sports and take their scholarships. Their privacy and safety will be at risk in bathrooms, showers and locker rooms. If radical Question 1 passes and becomes a part of Nevadan’s constitution, if we don’t like the consequences, it will be almost impossible to change.

Just like under the New Mexico State ERA, it will mean taxpayers will be forced to pay for abortions. Children will be able to receive puberty blockers and sex change surgery without parental knowledge or consent.

Question 1 puts our consent laws in jeopardy putting children at risk of predators. Our religious liberty will be threatened especially if we believe in traditional marriage.  Question One passed the Nevada Legislature with almost no public testimony as the Legislature was closed during Covid. Protect women, girls and parental rights. Vote NO on Question 1.”

With that said, I find it odd that tens of millions of dollars this campaign season has been spent on abortion ads, attack ads, and ads supporting Question 3, but I have yet to see one television ad or mailer about Question 1 from the organizations that lobbied for it or a campaign sign or slogan from the bi-partisan politicians who voted for it. With all the pearl-clutching over equal rights, I would expect much more from the feminists, trans-activists, and “woke” Left surrounding a historic amendment during a heated midterm election.

Yet, there wasn’t much fanfare when the first and only female-majority Nevada legislature passed this amendment. In fact, the legislation was finally passed in 2021 during the pandemic, which prohibited or limited public comment or dissent due to pandemic restrictions. I am told by several activists who opposed this amendment that connections to the Zoom conference suffered numerous technological difficulties making it difficult for those to express their opposition.

Female Majority Nevada Legislature, 2019 (Photo: Nevada Legislature)

Maybe the deafening silence from feminists and the self-proclaimed champions of equal rights is because Question 1 does not answer how women and girls will have their rights protected if this “equal rights” amendment passes.

Gender identity and expression is a newly-crafted constitutional right for those who are afflicted with gender dysphoria. According to the Mayo Clinic, a diagnosis for gender dysphoria is included in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), a manual published by the American Psychiatric Association.

Moreover, gender identity and gender expression has now become a political issue for a majority of parents who have publicly denounced the efforts of the LBTQIA+++ lobby to influence their child’s education or the controversial infiltration of biological men into female locker rooms and a “woke” pass to participate in women’s sports.

“Queering the ERA” (Photo: @Kate_Kelly_ESQ)

When every Democratic legislator, and a handful of Republicans, passed the amendment, critics were dismissed, silenced, intimidated or bullied. One critic who is hard to dismiss is University of Reno softball player, Tyra Clary. She expressed her concerns about the passage of Question 1 to her fellow Calvary Church congregants:


During this fight for “equal rights”, I have sat in on school board meetings, watched Supreme Court nominee testimony, and skimmed news headlines highlighting the blatant disregard and disrespect for the privacy and biological identity of unique human beings–women.

What is a woman, you might ask? Now, only a biologist can seemingly answer that question. One should not expect that simple question to be answered by a Supreme Court Justice, a TikTok influencer, or a child in the Clark County public school system.

Students in the failing school system are now instructed to use “persons” instead of gender-specific language. Students are taught that gender is a construct or an expression. Often this expression is reduced to a caricature marked by excessive make-up, short skirts, a string of pearls or high heels. Biological females have been simply reduced to drag queens. Rosie the Riveter has been replaced by Dylan Mulvaney.

Trans activist and social media star Dylan Mulvaney (pictured on the right). Photo: (DylanMulvaney.com)

Mulvaney is a 25 year-old man, who less than a year ago, decided to be a woman and is cashing in on his many costumes and social media platforms. He has since made close to a million dollars from promotions and sponsorships and even snagged an interview with President Biden on his “Day 222 of being a girl.” In their interview, President Biden confirmed that states should and must provide “gender-affirming” healthcare and biological men should be allowed to use women’s bathrooms.

It was recently uncovered and reported that the state of Pennsylvania has spent $16.7 million in taxpayer money on sex-change surgeries and other gender transition services for children since 2015. If Question 1 passes, Nevadans can expect their tax dollars to be used, without parental consent, for the same services on children and biological girls will be denied their right to privacy and safety in a gender-specific bathroom.

As a former college athlete, I did not have to worry about a biological male in a tennis skirt as a competitor or a teammate. Tennis champion Serena Williams even admitted that men were faster and stronger on the court than women. Now, women’s sports and locker rooms have been infiltrated by men. If a biological woman dares to speak out against this intrusion in the defense of biological women, we are labeled “transphobic.” It is quite easy to attack the messenger when one can’t scientifically defend the message.

If Question 1 passes, the amendment to the constitution cannot be changed or legislatively challenged for five years. If Question 1 passes, the feminists who once marched a women’s rights will have now succeeded in eliminating women’s rights. Feminists who once sang “A woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle” are now riding with men on pink, blue and white transgender training wheels and running over women and girls in their never-ending quest for equality.

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Megan Barth
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