Angela Davis - Women and the Fight Against Racism

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Angela Davis, black activist and teacher, speaking at the Sabathani Community Center in Minneapolis, and by the Minnesota Coalition for Battered Women. Davis’s address was titled "Women and the Fight Against Racism.” She talks about women, race, and poverty and the effects of the Reagan administration policies on female heads of households.

Angela Davis has been a controversial figure in this country since she emerged into the national limelight in the late 1960s for promoting communism at the University of California. Davis has been active in the Black Panther party, has been the Communist party's vice-presidential candidate in the past two elections, and continues to teach at San Francisco State.

Read the Text Transcription of the Audio.

(00:00:01) Well, first of all, I'd like to extend my thanks to the Minnesota Coalition for battered women for having invited me to address this very timely conference. The Thematic emphasis on the connections between the women's movement and the fight for equality and liberation of African-Americans Latinos, Asian Pacific people and Native Americans is especially appropriate today considering the influence the rising influence of racist propaganda, and the Ferocious attacks on civil rights over the last several (00:00:51) decades. (00:00:55) Historically the organized struggle for women's rights of the 19th and early 20th century focused. So myopically on issues affecting economically well-to-do white women. That racially or Crest women as well as working-class women as a whole felt thoroughly alienated from that movement. As a consequence of the powerful ideological influence of racism black women's contributions to the fight for women's equality made by and large outside of the borders of the organized women's rights movement were hardly hardly acknowledged by white women then and of actually just recently begun to be uncovered by feminist Scholars today. During the second wave of the women's movement during the late 1960s and early 1970s. uncannily similar problems re-emerged It is only recently that the concern for a strong multiracial women's movement sharply focusing on the rights of working-class women has begun to be expressed. When I accepted the invitation to speak at this conference, it was last summer, I believe and along with many other people in this country. I was diligently and enthusiastically working to guarantee the defeat of Ronald Reagan at that time. It seemed that there was a very good possibility of reaching enough voters with the message that the re-election of Reagan would unleash more devastating assaults on people of color on women on the working class as a (00:03:20) whole. (00:03:24) Enough people with that message so that we would indeed be able to evict him from the White House. And I have to admit up to the very last minute. I hoped even against hope. That numbers of white working people would recognize that if they voted for me for Reagan. They would be acting in opposition to their own self interests. The miracle of course did not occur 65% of the white voting population sided with the Reagan (00:04:07) forces. (00:04:10) Too many people across this country the unthinkable has occurred. Despair and depression have overcome them. But I would like to suggest before I go any further that however dismal the State of Affairs might appear in this country today. We have not yet, but absolutely defeated. If we do despair defeat will be guaranteed. If ever we needed to believe in our ability as workers as women as people of color to organize to unite and to fight back. We need to believe in that ability now and if ever we needed to build a multiracial women's movement strongly emphasizing the special problems of women workers. We need to build that movement (00:05:23) now. We need to muster up (00:05:28) all of the courage of which we are capable all of our knowledge our experience organizing capabilities. We need to stand up to the reaganite forces and demonstrate to them that over the next four years. We will be fighting harder than we've ever fought (00:05:49) before. (00:05:59) What is at stake is not only our hard-won one gains of the last several decades, but indeed the very fate of the planet on which we live. Well, we should be rightly appalled that so many people in this country voted for a man who represents the Ascension of the most racist the most sexist the most Anti working-class the most bellicose forces in the society. We should also recognize that the 1984 elections did not result in a consistent Trend toward conservatism among workers. As a matter of fact many of the very same people who voted for Reagan voted in Democratic Congress person some even Progressive Democratic Congress (00:06:56) persons. (00:06:59) As a matter of fact that was no sharp turn to the right in Congress many Progressive initiatives believe it or not passed in areas where Reagan received a majority of the vote down in Los Angeles fifty four point five percent of the people in LA county went with Reagan, but the very same voters passed the jobs with peace initiative by 60% Across the country and often and areas where Reagan one nuclear free zones were instituted measures were passed instituting nuclear free (00:07:45) zones. (00:07:49) Despite the fact that Reagan has interpreted his Landslide Victory as a mandate for conservatism the large Reagan vote does not indicate that people in this country want to see a drastic turn to the right. It indicates some confusion. Yes. Many people were lured into a trap. The majority of white people were lured into a trap which caused them to vote in diametrical opposition to their real (00:08:25) interest the (00:08:31) fact that black people voted in such overwhelming numbers against the Reagan Administration 90% of the black population said (00:08:41) no to Reagan. Should (00:08:50) indicate that as a group black people are the least confused about the direction this country should be going (00:08:56) in. (00:09:03) We've always had that 10% Fringe element. Anyway, even back during the days of slavery. And of course we have to remember that the Rainbow Coalition the Jesse Jackson campaign in the Rainbow Coalition played a very important role in clarifying the issues that we should be raising jobs affirmative action equal pay for women equal pay for jobs of comparable work a reduction of the military budget affirmative action a nuclear freeze the movement which crystallized around Jesse Jackson's candidacy also understood the strategy, which is most likely to lead us in a progressive Direction. A functional Alliance uniting the struggle of Afro Americans and other racially or plastic people with a labor movement with the campaign's of the women's movement the peace movement. The disabled movement the gay and lesbian movement the seniors movement the youth movement. Coalition politics should be the order of the day. (00:10:29) And black (00:10:30) people Latinos Asian Pacific people and Native Americans should be expected to play leading roles Within These coalition's (00:10:43) we should not assume that (00:10:45) black people are only capable of giving leadership to white people on issues regarding our own particular quest for equality. (00:10:58) Oh that Chicanos (00:10:59) Puerto Ricans Native Americans and Asian Pacific. People are only qualified to speak out on behalf of their people. It is urgently important that sectors of the women's movement which are predominantly white and middle class understand this. All too often historically as well as in the present era white leaders of the women's movement have assumed that when black women raise their voices about the triple oppression. We suffer our message is not relevant to (00:11:35) them. (00:11:38) They have labored under the false assumption that women's issues can be separated from the issues that have been in delineating by the black movement and the labor movement their theories and their practice of frequently implied that the most authentic challenge to sexism is one which is purified of elements relating to racism and class oppression as if there were such a phenomenon as abstract Womanhood experiencing abstract sexism fighting in an abstract historical context. (00:12:23) Of course, of course (00:12:25) that state of abstraction usually turns out to be white middle-class women suffering under and reacting to the sexist attitudes and behavior of white middle-class men and calling for equality with a white middle-class male counterparts leaving the existing socio-economic system (00:12:47) intact it is (00:12:55) possible. (00:12:58) It is (00:12:58) possible. That women who are white. And associated with the capitalist or middle classes can strive to make advances for themselves which will result in no progress at all for their racially oppressed and working-class sisters, perhaps we all recognize that Reagan's comment in response to the nomination of Geraldine Ferraro as a democratic vice presidential candidate to the effect. That is what Reagan said. The first woman president of this country would not be a Democrat, but rather a Republican Perhaps we recognize that this is a remark not to be welcomed by feminists and those who wish to see women move toward full equality. After all Reagan did a point the first woman to serve on the United States Supreme Court Sandra Day O'Connor and aside from taking generally conservative positions on the court. She has taken distinctly antique woman positions such as in her research in the recent abortion decision. How many white feminists however have been perceptive enough to understand the underlying racism of many Ferraro backers. First of all, it should be acknowledged. That the mass movement that was galvanized by Jesse Jackson. Played an essential role in opening the doors for the first major presidential ticket in the history of this country to include a woman (00:15:03) during the (00:15:03) Democratic treat primaries campaign. The only man in the (00:15:09) running (00:15:12) Who took a Resolute position on having a woman running mate was Jesse Jackson? Why was he virtually ignored by the National Organization for Women and the national women's political caucus? He was not even invited to speak before their conventions as was Mondale who at that time had not even intimated that he was receptive to the idea of a woman running mate. After Monday all decided that he would indeed consider women for that position. Why did neither organization suggests that he interviewed a black woman as well as the several white women who were suggested after all black women have a long and glorious history of political leadership in this country (00:16:07) Shirley Chisholm. Shirley (00:16:11) Chisholm is a matter of fact was the first became the first woman to announce her candidacy for the Democratic party's presidential nomination. After Geraldine Ferraro was selected as the Vice Presidential nominee buttons began to appear at the Democratic Convention bearing the slogan. Jesse opened the door for raro walked through. But among Ferraro's feminist Bacchus, how many are understood the extent to which the daring and militancy of the Jesse Jackson campaign established the basis for the nomination of Ferraro? For more than a century racist ideology has formed smokescreens clouding the vision of progressive people preventing them from understanding the central role of the Black Liberation movement and furthering the Democratic rights and Liberties of the white majority. This Dynamic has been especially operative and relationship to white women in this country. While black women certainly welcomed the nomination of Geraldine Ferraro and understood the momentous and historic nature of this development. They did not uncritically assume that Ferrara represented the interests of all women. white women perhaps middle-class white women certainly but not necessarily racially oppressed women. In fact black women who were present at the Democratic Convention publicly criticized the extent to which they had been rendered invisible at the convention. At a convention which was praised by its recognition of the need to push women forward. At that convention black women moved to organize the national black women's political caucus. How many white feminists found themselves so Swept Away by the Euphoria produced by the first time nomination of a woman to the position of Vice Presidential nominee that they failed to recognize that black women and the racially oppressed sisters were being excluded from this development as we have been locked out of the women's movement so many times in the past as a result of the influence of racist ideology. If it was necessary for Sojourner Truth to exclaim in 1851 ain't I a woman black women in 1984 a still compelled to expose the invisibility to which they have been relegated (00:19:32) within large sectors of the women's movement in both (00:19:37) theory and (00:19:38) practice. (00:19:42) It's interesting that in all of the talk about the first. Woman Vice Presidential nominee the tradition in Progressive politics in this country was not acknowledged. As a matter of fact, I was nominated to be the vice presidential candidate of the common Communist Party long before Geraldine Ferraro (00:20:13) as a matter of fact, not only in (00:20:15) 1984 but in 1980 as well and in 1968 of black woman by the name of Charlene Mitchell was the Communist party's presidential candidate and in 1952 a black woman in Los Angeles was the Vice Presidential nominee during the Wallace campaign. You see racism. Creates that smokescreen which prevents people from understanding the realities (00:20:51) and this country. (00:20:54) But this is 1984. It is a time of MX missiles of threatened invasions of Central America. It is a time when the threat of fascism presents unprecedented dangers. As a matter of fact of the Republican convention fascist organizations organizations that espouse fascist ideas emerged openly. organizations like the National Committee for a trade Union free (00:21:35) environment (00:21:38) Coors beer the Hoover Institute These are the organizations and corporations behind Ronald (00:21:50) Reagan. (00:21:55) The women's movement cannot afford to make the same errors it made during the last century or even during the last (00:22:06) decade. (00:22:11) Mistakes particularly those which can be attributed to racism must be immediately examined and measures must be taken to correct them. and all of the pre-election discussion of the gender gap Was the potential impact of race and class really taken into consideration? There was talk about a potential 10 to 15 percent differential between women and men with respect to the Reagan vote. But actually there was only a four percent difference in the way women voted. 57 present of women voted for Reagan as opposed to 61 percent of men It was assumed by many that women would vote in larger numbers against Reagan because of the impact of the Reagan Administration on women's economic situation. a June 1983 CBS New York Times poll revealed that only 39 percent of women as opposed to 60% of men approved of Reagan's handling of the economy This 21% gender gap was interpreted to be a reflection of a process that has come to be called the feminization of poverty. It has been pointed out. Of course that two out of every three poor adults are women that one out of every five children is poor the women had half of all poor families and over half of the children and female-centered households are poor and one-fifth of all older women are poor. However, of course 68 percent of black Latino and Native American Indian children and female-centered households are poor and among black senior women. The poverty rate is 45% among black women over 65 living alone. The poverty rate is 82% while it is certainly true that there has been an increase in the rate of poverty among women in general. It should not be assumed that all women have been equally affected by this process. As a matter of fact the focus on what has come to be called the Nouveau poor among women. That is the same middle-class white women who fall into poverty as a result of divorce. Has distorted the real situation of poverty among women. It is a typical racist pattern that a phenomenon is not recognized as a legitimate issue until it begins to affect white people poverty is not a valid issue until it begins to affect white middle-class women, but of course since the days of slavery black people have known the reality of poverty and Native American women, Chicana Puerto Rican women have also experienced the realities of impoverishment and numbers that are far greater proportionally than their white sisters. the assault of the Reagan Administration on the working class in this country had an especially painful effect on women of color. If any women know what it is to try to eke out a living in a society that is designed to function in accordance with the prophet Drive of the rich then it is African American women and their (00:26:29) sisters of color. (00:26:32) We must not permit the notion of the feminization of poverty to prevent us from recognizing the extent of which black people as a group have suffered horrendous economic setbacks as a consequence of the racist domestic policies of the Reagan Administration. This government's budget and tax policies have brought about a decline in income and in the standard of living for the average black family in every income stratum. In 1983 nearly 36 percent of all black people live in poverty the highest percentage since the Census Bureau began collecting data on glad poverty. From 1980 to 1983 and additional 1.3 million black people fell into the ranks of the officially poor (00:27:37) while white (00:27:38) unemployment is now lower than at the beginning of the Reagan term according to official statistics black unemployment is now higher it is now 16 percent as compared to 14.4% when Reagan took office in 1981. The racist Gap and unemployment is widen all around between black and white men between black and white women between black and (00:28:12) white teenagers. (00:28:17) I've referred to the invisibility imposed on black women, especially with in official Circles of the democratic party and among many quite feminists who consider themselves liberal. We should recognize that poor black women have not been excluded from attention among the ideologist associated with the Reagan Administration. as a matter of fact the Moynihan approach to the two black women is manifested by the 1965 report called The Negro family case for National Action has begun to insinuate itself back into official government philosophy. George Gilder one of the foremost philosophers of reaganism Argues in his book, which is called wealth and poverty that black women are in effect responsible for much of the poverty in the black community. He goes on to challenge the idea that black women are victims of double discrimination. There is little evidence. He States and I quote the black women suffer any discrimination at all. Let alone in double doses resurrecting the myth of the black matriarchy. He proclaims that black women are ahead of black men intellectually and occupationally moreover. He says they receive welfare benefits. Which allow them access to money which black men do not (00:30:10) have (00:30:14) listened to the following passage from guilders book. Nothing is so destructive to mail values. Such as male confidence and Authority which determine sexual potency and respect from the wife and children. As the growing imperius recognition that when all is said and done his wife and children can do better without him. The man has the gradually sinking feeling that his role as provider the definitive male activity. We second from the Primal days of the (00:31:03) hunt through (00:31:06) the Industrial Revolution and into modern life has been largely seized from him. He has been cuckolded by the compassionate state. In the welfare culture money becomes something not earned by men through hard work but a right conferred on women by the (00:31:29) state. (00:31:32) Protests and complained replaced diligence and disciplined as the sources of pee. Boys grow up seeking support from women while they find manhood in the Macho Circles of the street and the bar or in the irresponsible fathering of random progeny. This is one of the foremost philosophers of the Reagan Administration. Gilda argues that men who live with welfare mothers move from one to another and a both the quote beneficiaries and victims unquote of the welfare system. He says that hundreds of thousands of black men. Don't marry and don't work because they're able to live off the benefits received by black women. And I quote further afdc offers a guaranteed income to any child raising couple in America that is willing to break up. Or to any teenage girl over 16 who is willing to Bear an illegitimate (00:32:41) child. (00:32:44) Of course if welfare benefits were as abundant as racist theorists, like Gilda make them out to be women would not be having such a hard time trying to provide no judgment and shelter for the children. The average afdc benefit is not enough even to keep a mother and her children over the poverty level much less to support a man (00:33:19) yet the myths (00:33:21) persist thanks to Gilda and others that welfare mothers capitalize on taxpayers hard-earned money and spend it on Cadillacs and fur coats. Reagan has been known as a matter of fact of fabricate stories about welfare fraud Reagan has a habit of lying all the (00:33:44) time. (00:33:51) I've got really frightens me about him is it? Much of the time he may not even be realizing that he's (00:33:58) lying. (00:34:02) There's a woman in Chicago. I'm quoting Reagan directly. There's a woman in Chicago. She has 80 names 30 addresses 12 social security cards. She's got Medicaid is getting food stamps and she's collecting welfare under each of her name's her tax-free cash income is over 150,000 dollars what Reagan was actually referring to was a case of Welfare fraud in which the Chicago woman used for aliases and got away with about $8,000. Even with this so called fraud. She was still below the income that (00:34:50) one needs to lead a comfortable life in this country. (00:35:03) the brunt of the responsibility nowadays for poverty in the black community is often placed on the shoulders of unmarried teenage girls who bear children As James McGee points out in the 1984 state of Black America Urban League report. It is almost as if these observers proposed that black families headed by females are subject to some inexhaustible law of nature that dictates that the heads of such families will be poor and their children disadvantaged and that this law does not apply to other blacks and other females. Teenage black girls do not create poverty by having children. (00:35:56) Quite the (00:35:56) contrary they have babies at such an young age precisely because they are poor that is to say because they don't have the opportunity to acquire an education because meaningful jobs are not available to them because creative forms of recreation or not accessible to them. They have children at such a young age because safe effective forms of contraception designed not for population control, but rather to allow women when to have children according to their own individual needs are not available to (00:36:35) them. (00:36:43) Well, some forty-two percent of black families today are headed by women. We should not assume that all single black mothers receiving welfare benefits are receiving welfare benefits as Yoda and others would have us believe in 1982 out of five black single mothers were working and nearly a third of these worked on jobs subsidized by the federal government certainly Reagan's cutbacks and jobs programs, especially the Ceta program has had a devastating effect on the employment of black single (00:37:27) mothers. (00:37:34) According to the study that was done in connection with the analysis of Dreams McGee to which I just referred many of the single mothers in the black community were not working because of health problems and because of the absence of child care facilities. As a matter of fact women who have no education who have no skills. Most often cannot find jobs which pay enough to cover the cost of the job. In about 43 percent of the single mothers high blood pressure was a health problem. And in about 13 percent diabetes prevented them from (00:38:22) working. (00:38:26) I'm moving on. During the early phases of the Contemporary women's (00:38:34) movement. (00:38:36) Women's Liberation is issues were often so narrowly construed. That white women by and large did not understand the importance of Defending black women from the ideological and quite concrete assaults emanating from the circles of government. White women involved at that point primarily in the consciousness-raising process did not grasp the relationship between the struggles being conducted during the late 60s by the welfare rights movement. And the overall battle for women's liberation. Neither did they see that the challenge to the ideological definition of black women as emasculating matriarchs as a struggle which should have involved all women who identified with the fight for women's (00:39:41) emancipation. (00:39:44) We can now no longer afford to assume. That races influences were forever divided the women's movement. And that white women will be eternally unable to grasp the nature of the bonds linking them to their sisters of color. White women can no longer afford to justify the failure to struggle jointly with their sisters of color by offering such feeble excuses as well. We invited them to our meaning, but they just don't appear to be (00:40:22) interested. (00:40:27) During the late 60s and early 70s. It was often said by white women that black Chicana Puerto Rican Native American Indian women were not interested in feminist issues because they were more backward in their consciousness of sexism. Then were the white women who were so intensely involved in consciousness-raising. Hopefully, they now recognize that the way in which they themselves had formulated women's issues reflected their own particular class and racial (00:41:08) backgrounds. women of color and (00:41:14) indeed white working-class women suffer under the way of sexism in different (00:41:20) ways (00:41:23) women's issues should be formulated in such a way as to reflect the experiences and needs of women of color white working-class women as well as white middle-class women For white middle-class women economic issues may not seem as Central as they are for women whose children may become erect probably malnourished if they are not able to find a job or if they don't receive the welfare subsidies or the food stamps, which the Reagan Administration is already. So drastically cut and is attempting to further reduce. The struggle for jobs the fight against plant shutdowns the fight against union busting. These are women's struggles. Indeed. We must learn to take leadership from women and particularly women of color who are actively involved in the labor movement. Women's groups not directly associated with the labor movement should seek to Aid and support those women who for example are involved in strike activity consider the Chicana a Native American Indian women who were presently on strike along with their brother miners against Phelps Dodge in Morenci, Arizona. Alberto jarvez who heads the women Miners and miners wives organization is presently facing criminal charges as a result of being arrested by the police while walking the picket line and protecting to prevent scabs from crossing the picket line. She needs support from women all over this country. If a strong women's presence in the struggle Against Racism is to develop there must be support for the defense of affirmative action, which is facing serious attacks. Women of all color should remember that it was the Black Liberation movement which formulated the strategy of affirmative action in order to further the struggle Against Racism and that this strategy was subsequently taken up by the women's movement as a means of beginning to tear down the structure of sexist discrimination affirmative action on the job affirmative action on the campus and all areas of life must be resolutely defended and further expand it. women of color especially need an extensive accessible childcare (00:44:25) system There should be federally (00:44:32) funded non-racist non-sexist childcare for all who need (00:44:39) it at the same (00:44:46) time. It is essential to conduct an ongoing battle against racism in the public school system. (00:44:59) It is (00:44:59) important to conduct to conduct a struggle for bilingual education (00:45:05) in the public school system. (00:45:14) White women should not express solidarity with and lend support to women of color simply because they are the most oppressed women in the society. Certainly, this is the case. But if white women do not understand that they are also fighting for themselves and struggling to guarantee victories for women of color. They may easily fall into the ideological traps of racism even as they attempt to challenge racist (00:45:48) institutions. If they are under the (00:45:55) impression that they must assist their poor black sisters to rise out of their impoverished State as if black women need a great white (00:46:08) sister to pull them out. They have fallen prey to (00:46:14) racism. And white women who work in the battered women's movement must be especially aware of conveying such racist overtones. They may be unaware of them, but believe me women of color will immediately (00:46:31) pick up online. (00:46:36) In order to understand how middle class women benefit from advances made by the working-class sisters and sisters of color. let us construct a hypothetical pyramid and divide the structure among women in accordance with their race and social class at the very top we will have women of the bourgeoisie and then of the middle classes and under them will be white working-class women and at the very bottom will be racially oppressed women who in the vast majority come from working class backgrounds now of those at the very top struggle for and win victories only for themselves They necessarily leave all of the other women behind them. consider Sandra Day O'Connor or Jean Kirkpatrick But on the other hand, if those at the very bottom of the pyramid struggle and when victories for themselves, they necessarily push the whole structure of words. It is not possible for women of color to win gains without bringing about progress for all (00:47:59) women. Working-class (00:48:11) women and women of color confronts excess oppression in a way that reflects the real and complex objective interconnections between Class exploitation races oppression and male (00:48:25) Supremacy. (00:48:27) Whereas a white middle-class woman's experience of sexism incorporates a relatively isolated form of this oppression, working-class women's experiences necessarily Place sexism in the context of class exploitation and black women's experiences further incorporate the dimension of racism. Consider one of the most visible issues associated with the women's movement today and its relationship to the Fight Against Racism. The Reagan government has called upon women to surrender the right to control their bodies. Whereas they opposed the Constitutional Amendment that would guarantee women equal rights. They are pushing for a constitutional ban on (00:49:18) abortions. (00:49:20) Terrorist tactics have been overtly encourage last year. There was some 147 incidents of violence or harassment by anti-abortionist and this year over nine abortion clinics have been bombed in 1982 in the state of Illinois is a group called the army of God kidnap the owner of an abortion clinic along with his wife. And held them hostage for eight days threatening to kill them if Reagan did not announce an in to Legal abortions. Obviously the abortion issue has been used by the Reagan Administration to Fan the Flames of the ultra, right? But let us talk for a moment about the defense's erected by the abortion rights movement against these attacks. Let us ask first why they've been so few women of color in the rings of the abortion rights movement. More than during the first phase and the late 60s and early 70s, but still few. Perhaps we may find the answer if we ask a related question. Why with all the Raging controversy surrounding women's right to abortion has an equally burning question that of women's rights to be free of sterilization abuse been virtually (00:50:49) ignored. (00:50:55) As a result of the 1977 Hyde Amendment which withdrew funding for abortions the likelihood that poor women will be forced to submit themselves to sterilization surgery, even though they might wish to remain capable of bearing children in the future has greatly increased. Although there is presently no federal funding for abortions. And in many states, no State funding over 90% of the cost of sterilization surgery is covered by the federal government. And the state covers the remaining 10% of course, there'll ization abuse occurs in many more. Blatant ways. And it is Puerto Rican women. Native American Indian women she kind of women black and poor white women who are the victims one advocate of involuntary sterilization the Nobel prize-winning physicist William Shockley Has deemed 85% of American blacks to be genetically disadvantaged and thus candidates for sterilization. Reagan's policies must be challenged. Not only because we must protect women's right to choose to limit the size of their families but also because we must protect women's right to bear children to Bear the children they wish to (00:52:32) have now this is (00:52:37) This is only one example of formulating issues in such a way as to guarantee that they reflect the experiences of women of color as well as white women if we have the time we but we might be able to explore many more issues. In order to demonstrate how racism often influences the way in which these women's issues are articulated which is of course the best guarantee that multiracial organizations and coalition's among women will not materialize. And more than ever before more than ever before in the history of our country. We need to come together. We need to draw upon our experiences of the last decades. We need to learn from our errors. We need to organize mass movements the likes of which have not been seen in this country since perhaps the 1930s. (00:53:45) If ever we needed to take to the streets (00:53:48) before we need to fill the streets with our massive (00:53:53) demonstrations, involving collisions, involving coalition's of workers people of (00:54:01) color the women's movement the lesbian and gay movement the disabled movement movements Against Racism anti-Semitism seniors movement youth movements the peace movement if ever we needed to struggle together before we need to stroke struggle together today. (00:54:22) This is our only guarantee. This is our only (00:54:27) going T that we will be able to join hands and walk together on the path that will lead us beyond the fascist potential and the possibility of nuclear Amna side that has become so apparent with the real election of Ronald Reagan. We need to walk together in solidarity with the people of Nicaragua. (00:54:56) We need to walk together in solidarity with the people of (00:54:59) South Africa. (00:55:00) We need to we need to (00:55:06) walk together toward a world that will eventually be free of racism anti-Semitism and economic exploitation a world in which women will have truly achieved emancipation a world in which the threat of nuclear war would have become a horrible nightmare of the past. Finally laid to rest. (00:55:29) Thank you.


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