Founded to oppose feminism, Concerned Women for America (CWA) claims to be “the nation’s largest public policy women’s organization.” Its mission is to “bring Biblical principles into all levels of public policy.”
CWA was formed in 1979 by Tim LaHaye and his wife, Beverly. At the time, the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) was gaining steam, and conservative activists sought a vehicle to oppose it that would – at least on the surface – be run by women. (Today, three out of five of the organization’s highest-paid positions are held by men.)
Rather than close shop after the ERA failed to pass, CWA moved on to other issues. In the 1980s, its leaders frequently attacked public schools for allegedly promoting “secular humanism.” The group also added opposition to abortion and gay rights to its plate. Today, its Web site lists “six core issues”: opposition to same-sex marriage, opposition to legal abortion, promoting vouchers and other forms of tax aid to religious schools, opposition to pornography, “religious liberty” issues and national sovereignty. (This latter category includes opposition to the United Nations and demands for a crackdown on illegal immigration.)
Tim LaHaye became famous in the 1990s after he coauthored several apocalyptic potboilers about the end of the world called the Left Behind series. The LaHayes live in semi-retirement and no longer run CWA on a daily basis. The group’s Web site lists Beverly LaHaye, 79, as “founder and chairman” of the group, and its current president is Wendy Wright.
Tim LaHaye Quote: “Although the left is determined to turn America into an amoral, socialist state similar to China or Cuba, it is not inevitable. We still have time to turn back the tide to traditional moral and spiritual values and to restore genuine individual freedom. But we must understand how the humanists have gained such mind control that 10 to 15 million of them can literally overpower a nation of more than 270 million people.” (Mind Siege: The Battle for Truth in the New Millennium – with David Noebel)