Gordon Solie & the Equal Rights Amendment
By the early 1970s, Gordon Solie was revered as a regional icon for his expertise at the microphone in the world of professional wrestling. At the same time, Gordon continued to broadcast for WYOU Radio, a Tampa country music station.
In 1974, Gordon was honored by the Florida Bar Association during a banquet at Disney World for his award-winning, WYOU Radio editorial which chastised the Florida Senate for not passing the Equal Rights Amendment. It went like this:
“The Florida Senate has just refused to pass the Equal Rights Amendment (E.R.A.) in a rather emotion packed session. Thirty-three states have already passed the E.R.A. and only five more states are needed to add the amendment to the United States Constitution. Florida apparently chooses not to be among the front runners in correcting an old, old injustice for women in the United States. Apparently the basic reason for not passing the amendment was that if women are given equal rights, they would then become subject to military combat. This proposal, when first heard, perhaps to some would bear some merit. But in retrospect one has to realize that this is an emotional attempt at outdated southern chivalry. If one wishes to pursue this line of thinking….then ask any Gold Star mother if she would have changed places with her son in Germany…France….Korea or Viet Nam.
Women through the ages have proven that they can….if necessary…fight, and fight well! They have entered the field of combat for other countries and for the United States as nurses and administrators. If indeed, we regard women as our final sanctuary, and then let us realize they must be strong and must be equal in all respects. The reasons are so very obvious as to why we should pass the E.R.A. that an argument with such poor logic that they may have to serve in the military combat, borders on ridiculous. Better that the United States woman should be as well prepared as the Israeli woman, as an example, in the event of a national emergency. At least they would have a fighting chance if trained. The Legislature has allowed emotionalism and not logic to rule in this case….WYOU urges the Legislature to bring the measure to the floor again and present the women of the United States their inherent right of equality.”
More information about the life and career of Gordon Solie is available at www.soliesports.com