Conservatives are mourning the loss of a legend, as news breaks that “Sweetheart of the Silent Majority” Phyllis Schlafly has died.
Via CBS St. Louis:
Multiple sources are confirming to KMOX news that Phyllis Schlafly, has died.
Schlafly founded the Eagle Forum in 1972, a pro-family conservative group focusing heavily on social issues — it has about 80,000 members and, as of this week, Schlafly was still president.
“Phyllis Schlafly spent an astounding 70 years in public service of her fellow Americans,” said the Eagle Forum in a statement. “Her focus from her earliest days until her final ones was protecting the family, which she understood as the building block of life. She recognized America as the greatest political embodiment of those values. From military superiority and defense to immigration and trade; from unborn life to the nuclear family and parenthood, Phyllis Schlafly was a courageous and articulate voice for common sense and traditional values.”
Schlafly’s organization has been split this presidential election — Schlafly supported Donald Trump, though many board members disagreed. She maintained her leadership of the organization.
Schlafly was 92.
Breitbart tells us Schlafly passed away surrounded by family in her home in Ladue, Missouri, just 10 minutes from where she was born in St. Louis on August 15, 1924. Breitbart pays tribute to the “Sweetheart of the Silent Majority,” noting, her death marks a palpable loss for the conservative movement which, just last month, celebrated the grassroots heroine’s 92nd birthday.
An accomplished lawyer, activist, author, and mother of six, Phyllis Schlafly has been described as the embodiment of the ideal American woman.
As Sen. Jeff Sessions wrote in a statement submitted for the Congressional Record, “dynamic, smart, beautiful, and articulate,” Schlafly has “fearlessly” and “tirelessly… championed the American family and American values.”
In 1963, the publisher of the St. Louis Globe-Democrat put it this way: “Phyllis Schlafly stands for everything that has made America great and for those things which will keep it that way.”
Never one to see her femininity as antithetical to her career goals, Schlafly was awarded Illinois’ Mother of the Year only a few years before being named one of the 100 Most Important Women of the 20th Century by the Ladies’ Home Journal.
Revered for her steadfast judgement, Schlafly was a guiding light to many conservatives, who looked to her to determine the political battles of the day. Most recently, the “godmother of the conservative movement” led the charge against the Gang of Eight amnesty plan and President Obama’s Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement.
Unafraid to go toe-to-toe with some of the most powerful men in the nation, Schlafly was known for engaging in fights of principle all while projecting her irresistible charm, grace and wit.
Schlafly understood feminism not as an effort to erase or wipe away the unique, distinguishing features of women, but rather to embrace and encourage all of the special and wondrous things about womanhood. Whereas modern feminism teaches that a little girl is not so different from a little boy and that society should recognize no real difference between the two, Schlafly celebrated motherhood and femininity, and perceived the differences amongst the sexes as something to be extolled rather than repressed.
A vocal proponent for empowering all Americans, Schlafly fought tirelessly against the social institutions that teach the “absolutely false” narrative that “women are victims of the patriarchy and [that] it’s up to new laws in the Constitution to remedy this second-class citizenship of women.”
“American women are the most fortunate class of people who ever lived on the face of the earth,” Schlafly proclaimed in 2012. “We can do anything we want to do.”
Schlafly’s life was truly a testament to what she preached. A child of Great Depression, she paid her way through college by putting in 48-hour work weeks as a gunner testing ammunition at the largest ammunition plant in the world, the St. Louis Ordnance Plant. Schlafly tested .30 and .50 caliber ammunition for accuracy, penetration, velocity, and aircraft function before the government would accept the ammunition for the war effort during World War II. Despite the rigors of a full-time job working the midnight to 8am shift at the ordnance plant, Schlafly still managed to finish her schooling in just three years, graduating from Washington University in St. Louis Phi Beta Kappa.
She then went on to get her master’s degree in Government from Harvard University in 1945, and her J.D. from Washington University Law School in 1978.
Schlafly was active in politics for more than one-quarter of all American history.
She began volunteering for the Republican Party in 1945 when she worked as a campaign manager for Claude Bakewell, a successful Republican candidate for Congress. Schlafly attended every single Republican National Convention since 1952 and has been at the center of nearly every major political battle since then.
Schlafly has said that this election represents America’s last chance, explaining that if Trump does not win and mass immigration is not stopped, “we’re not going to be America anymore.”
Above all, Schlafly was an American woman and patriot of a bygone era. A Daughter of the American Revolution, Schlafly did not hide her fierce love of country, its history, and its citizens. She never cowered from a fight to defend her nation — no matter whom she had to take on in the process. As the then 91-year old Schlafly passionately told Breitbart last year, “I’m for America [slams hand on desk for emphasis] and America first [slams hand on desk again].”
In a 2009 address, Schlafly spoke directly to young audience members about what she viewed as her legacy. “What you learn from my life is, first of all, that anybody can be a leader. You can be a leader. I wasn’t born that way — I developed it, I worked at it. And also that the grassroots can organize, and take on all the powers that be and defeat them. That is the lesson.”
“Remember, those that wait upon the Lord will rise up with wings like eagles and they will run and not be weary. And don’t you ever be weary,” Schlafly told her captive audience, “Because the battle goes on, year after year, and we need all of you young people to join us in the battle.
A great example of patriotism, grass roots conservatism, leadership and true feminism.
Read the full tribute to Schlafly at Breitbart.
Such staunch proponents and examples of American and conservative values are rare today, but we will do our best to build on her great legacy. Rest in peace, Mrs. Schlafly.
[Note: This article was written by Michelle Jesse, Associate Editor]