Patricia Arquette Brings Gun Violence Message To Academy Awards

Patricia Arquette has launched a petition that urges U.S. Congress to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA), first introduced in 1923 by suffragist Alice Paul, according to Yahoo News.

The ERA deals with gender pay inequality, discrimination, and diversity issues. Patricia Arquette has been involved in those issues to a great extent lately. At last year's Academy Awards ceremony, the 47-year-old actress' acceptance speech about gender inequality issues triggered a positive response, especially from women, all across the country.

But now Patricia Arquette has taken the issue to the next level, calling on U.S. Congress to vote in favor of ratifying the ERA. In an interview with Yahoo News, Arquette insisted that the ERA doesn't mean that women should get special privileges in favor of men.

"All it says is all people are equal in the United States regardless of their sex. And who can argue with that?"

Patricia Arquette launched a petition on along with Equal Rights Advocates on Thursday. The ERA, which came into the spotlight in the 1970s despite the fact that it was introduced back in 1923, states that equality of rights under the law cannot be denied by the U.S. or by any other state on account of sex.

The ERA passed the House and the Senate and was actively endorsed by three U.S. Presidents: Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, and Jimmy Carter. The ERA, which is actively promoted by Patricia Arquette, was ratified by only 35 states, which means three more states must ratify it in order for it to become federal law.

However, Patricia Arquette is focused not only on sex-based inequality issues in the United States. According to Entertainment Weekly, Patricia Arquette, Steve Carell, Bryan Cranston, and other high-profile celebrities planned to promote a campaign against gun violence in the country at this year's Academy Awards ceremony, which took place at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, California, on Sunday, February 28 at 5:30 p.m. PST.

Patricia Arquette and other famous celebrities concerned about gun violence in the U.S. will be wearing a special extra piece of jewelry – bracelets decorated with a simple black and gold design. The "unique, hand-crafted" bracelets are said to "commemorate Americans killed or injured by gun violence," according to an official press release by the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence.

A year after her powerful acceptance speech at the Oscars, Patricia Arquette admitted that she had told her family that "I might not get jobs after the speech," according to Vanity Fair.

She added, "But they were like, 'Let's do this thing.'"

Patricia Arquette took part in Vanity Fair's Social Club, in the course of which she revealed that her speech was a sort of conclusion of the role of Olivia Evans she played in Boyhood. She won a number of awards for that role, including an Academy Award, a BAFTA Award, Critics' Choice Award, a Golden Globe Award, an Independent Spirit Award, and a SAG Award.

Patricia Arquette's character in the movie was a single mother-of-two struggling to build her own career while having to pay the bills all by herself. And according to Arquette herself, she knows many women are going through the same thing.

"Having seen what my character went through with my own mom, and not having equal power or equal money and being a single mom myself at 20, I knew so many women were going through the same thing."

Patricia Arquette participated at Vanity Fair's Social Club to promote her new documentary Equal Means Equal, which was made in collaboration with the ERA Education Project and its campaign that calls for equal rights for women across the U.S.

[Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images]