Debate: Was the Women's Liberation Movement Radical?.
During the 1960's and 1970's many groups in the United States found themselves protesting for their rights. The Constitution and Bill of Rights had been written nearly two hundred years before, yet some people still felt their rights were not being protected in the greatest democratic country in the world. These protesting groups included African Americans, Hispanics, Native Americans, homosexuals, and women. To figure out if the women's liberation movement was a radical one, we should first look at the definition of radical. The American Heritage dictionary defines radical as "Advocating fundamental or revolutionary changes." According to this definition the women's liberation movement was indeed a radical one.
The women's movement was primarily pushed by young educated women who found it difficult to go to a life as housewife after attending college. One of the ways they promoted these revolutionary ideas through their involvement in equal rights groups. Perhaps one of the most influential political groups that is still working today is the National Organization for Women ( NOW). This group was started, "to take action to bring women into full participation in the mainstream of American society now, exercising all the privileges and responsibilities thereof in truly equal partnership with men." This group along with many other women not associated with the NOW organization called for and won many revolutionary political and social battles. Some of these accomplishments included Title IX of the Higher Education Act and the Supreme Court decision in the Roe v. Wade battle which ruled, "that women had the right to choose abortion in the early stages of pregnancy." This is still a highly controversial ruling to this day. .
The largest battle that women had to face was equality in the workplace. Jobs were classified as "women's" or "men's," women received the lower pay jobs, and unemployment rates among women were much higher than men.