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Salient. Victoria University Student Newspaper. Volume 36, Number 23. 23rd September 1973

Women can't wait for the Millenium

page 19

[unclear: Wo]men can't wait for the M[unclear: illenium]

Dear Sirs,

Although not all women are Marxists, all women are women: this may seem self-evident [unclear: b] needs to be pointed out to Peter Wilson. Not all women toe the "Marxist" line where self[unclear: li] clinics are involved. The basic difference between the attitude of the women's movement as whole and the "wait-till-the-revolution" attitude is that, as a white middle-class male, [unclear: Won] can afford to sit back and wait till [unclear: there] revolution. However, women who have unwanted pregnancies right now aren't prepared to wait till the Millenium for their abortions. [unclear: Art] women aren't going to continue to suffer under sexist doctors, state-paid or not, [unclear: u] the revolution arrives, when they could [unclear: beeing] sympathetic pro-women voluntary doctors and helping themselves and each other.

This is what Rothman's visit is about. Women's attitude is typical of male-domina-[unclear: to] political groups that are so caught up in idology that they have shut off their feelings and perception to the suffering of women [unclear: this] is going on right now, under their noses.

Far from 'posing questions of biology [unclear: onf] women's physiology in abstraction from the existing social order', Rothman's orientation is aimed at equipping women with the neessary knowledge and confidence to assert themselves in one of the most oppressive of their social relationships: that between them[unclear: an] the medical welfare system.

This consciousness raising effort operates [unclear: in three] lapping areas. a) The relationship between a woman and her anti-woman doctor; b) Setting up self-help clinics to meet women's medical and psychological needs right now — a revolutionary example; c) The political struggle for state-supplied non-sexist medical walfare services in the context of the ongoing ([unclear: Ie] that word!) struggle for radical social change by the women's movement in general. Perhaps it is because the women's movement [unclear: ngs] directly from the experience and needs of women right now and attempts to answer [unclear: n] on both a short-term and a long-term [unclear: s,] that it has had such far-reaching and [unclear: prfound] effect on women's consciousness ([unclear: Mrxist] or no) in the few years it has been operating.

Although we appreciate that Wilson's "attitude" was "struck" in reponse to Jill Basher's [unclear: lrr], we feel that his reply shows him up to be "[unclear: astracted]" from present social realities, espec[unclear: ia]' where women are concerned. His uncomfortable and premature defence against charges of "male chauvinism" give us some hope that he will eventually see the error of his ways and stop [unclear: tng] to use his position to impede the politices of the women's movement — he can't win!

Meanwhile, we remain "United with struggle

[unclear: aganist] Peter Wilson"

[unclear: Dibie] Jones & Linda Evans