From Housewives to Protesters: Mormons for the ERA: Conclusion
Mormons for the ERA played an important role in the ERA campaign in Utah. They protested in sacred spaces by chaining themselves to LDS temples, church buildings, and by not sustaining church leaders in General Conference. They utilized LDS hymns, rituals, and language for protests and, by doing so, claimed elements of their culture, brought attention to gender discrimination in the church, and entered the male sphere. MERA protesters suffered a range of consequences for their protest. Some were released from church callings, denied temple recommends or were excommunicated. Others faced social consequences and no longer felt like they belonged in the LDS community. MERA was ultimately unsuccessful in achieving ERA ratification in Utah and the United States. While MERA did not bring about changes within the LDS Church that gave women increased power and equality, the group did provide an important example of how some Mormon women protest and speak up for their rights. Their story can help future protesters in their efforts to bring about change.