Phyllis Schlafly, whose grass-roots campaigns against Communism, abortion and the Equal Rights Amendment galvanized conservatives for almost two generations and helped reshape American politics, died on Monday. She was 92.
Her death was confirmed by the Eagle Forum, the conservative organization she founded in 1975.
In her time, Mrs. Schlafly was one of the most polarizing figures in American public life, a self-described housewife who displayed a moral ferocity reminiscent of the ax-wielding prohibitionist Carry Nation. Richard Viguerie, who masterminded the use of direct mail to finance right-wing causes, called her “the first lady of the conservative movement.”
On the left, Betty Friedan, the feminist leader and author, compared her to a religious heretic, telling her in a debate that she should burn at the stake for opposing the Equal Rights Amendment. Ms. Friedan called Mrs. Schlafly an “Aunt Tom.”
I hope that in death she finds the peace she so querulously denied her fellow genderists as well as LGBTQI Americans throughout her life.
(Oh, and I’m going on vacation! See you next week….)