In the year of Betty Ford's centennial we celebrate her work for women's rights while she was First Lady. In 1972, Betty Ford began traveling from state to state promoting the ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment. In a 1970s speech on the ERA, Ford explained her position:
"The Equal Rights Amendment, when ratified, will not be an instant solution to women's problems. It will not alter the fabric of the constitution or force women away from their families. It will help knock down those restrictions that have locked women in to the old stereotypes of behavior and opportunity. It will help open up more options for women. But it is only a beginning. The debate over ERA has become too emotional because of the fears of some -- both men and women -- about the changes already taking place in America."
and move forward to the 50 minute/48 second mark of a 2013 interview
with Richard Norton Smith, presidential historian.