Thursday, June 4, 2009

What Are Teens Are Saying About Sex

ATTITUDES ABOUT SEX HAVE CHANGED"My attitude about sex has changed because I have already lost my virginity, and I always thought that after you have sex you couldn't change your mind and say 'no' anymore. I've done stupid things and should have been monogamous, but now I'll wait until I find my companion for life because having sex is so serious." Rene"My attitude was always to wait until I am married to have sex, but now I know not to make any exceptions. Sex is not a game, and it is not harmful if you just wait! It won't kill you to wait, but it might if you don't!" Patricia"I was going to have sex with my girlfriend on her birthday, but now that you came, I am just going to wait until I get married and wait for the right person." Victor"I want to wait because there are no risks, and I can't get pregnant if I'm a virgin. Plus, my parents won't be disappointed in me." Melissa"I never really thought about waiting until I was married, but all this information that you taught us has changed my attitude!" Arthur"I was planning on having sex before getting married, but not now! I know it is not worth it." Harveyback to top
AVOIDING FUTURE PROBLEMS BY WAITING"If I have sex before marriage I may get a disease, my relationship with my parents would be hurt, and all the plans I have for the future might never come true. That is why I choose to wait!" Maria
"It's dumb to waste your education, your dreams, and maybe your life on a mistake like not waiting!" Dena"Having sex before marriage will take the 'magic' away from your honeymoon!" Jacobback to top
COMMITTED TO WAITING"You should wait no matter what, and if you want to have sex with someone, you should get married!" Leslie"I'm going to wait until I'm married to have sex. I made a commitment to myself and to God that I would wait until the proper time - marriage!" Irene"If you wait until marriage to have sex you will not regret it when you do get married." Estela"I've chosen to wait until marriage to have sex. Many people say, "You can't do that!" But I say, "Oh, yes I can. Just watch me!" Francis"I'm convinced that waiting to have sex until you are married is best. You will be happier and will have no regrets." Rosemaryback to top
FRIENDS WHO HAVE SEX"I thought just because my friends do it, I should do it But now I feel I don't have to be following my friends. I choose to wait until marriage to have sex. I just wish my friends would too." Lawrence"I see my friends just using it for pleasure and not for love and that scares me! I am going to wait! There's no reason why I should give something up that will be worth more to me at the right time - marriage." Teresaback to top
HURTING FUTURE LOVED ONES"If you have sex before you are married, you might ruin your loved one's life in the future." David"I know that I wouldn't be able to live with myself if I had sex before marriage and got AIDS and then gave it to my husband or my children." Nancy"I don't want to have sex before I get married because I don't want to die young, and I would not want to give a disease to the person I love or to my child." Eddie"I will wait until I am married. There's no reason to risk hurting someone I love - my future wife." Marcus"I know I will wait to have sex, because I don't want to hurt myself or my wife later on." Charlie"It is far better to choose not to have sex before marriage so you do not hurt the one you love when you are married." Gabriel"I am going to wait to have sex after I am married, so I'll be a virgin and won't give my wife an STD or HIV." Thomas
"I want to wait so I won't put my future family in jeopardy. I couldn't stand giving my kids and husband AIDS. They deserve to live." Lauraback to top
NOT WORTH THE RISK!"It is not worth the risk you take to have one night of pleasure and nine months of pain and maybe all your life of pain." Yesenia"It's not worth losing your life for one brief moment of pleasure!" Darlene"Choosing abstinence is the best choice if you don't want to wreck your life!" Julie"I think I am far better off waiting than risking my life for only a short, enjoyable time and night." Yvette"I am going to wait until marriage, because I don't want to worry about STDs." Sergio"Having sex before marriage is bad because there are many consequences of doing it. Many of those consequences will affect you for the rest of your life, and it just isn't worth it!" Ericback to top
SECONDARY VIRGINITY"If you make a bad mistake by having sex as a teenager, it's okay. Life goes on. However, you must choose to stop and wait - secondary virginity." Brandon"I had sex once, and since I've been in this class, I learned that there is nothing more important than your life, so I will choose secondary virginity." Tiffany
TRUE LOVE"I choose to wait because I don't want to make stupid decisions and I want to experience it with my true love - my future husband." Kristin"Not everyone is having sex. It is okay to say ‘no'. If a person does not respect your decision to wait, they don't really love you. They are just thinking of themselves." Erica"I am not going to have sex before I get married, because I want the experience to be a good one not a bad one, and to have sex with someone I truly love and who loves me back." Michael"It is better to wait because it's important for sex to be special - something you only share with one person, your husband or wife." Angelica"I am going to wait until I am married to have sexual intercourse so I can enjoy my first sexual experience with my wife more." Marcos"I'll wait until I'm married to have sex so it will be special." Dee"I choose to wait until marriage that way I could save myself for my husband." Carmen.
"My virginity is something I want to keep and share with my husband." Darlene"I am going to wait until I am married to have sex, because I don't want to worry about STDs. My friends keep making fun of me because I am a virgin. But at least when I get married, I won't have any diseases!" Sergio"When I realized condoms are not 100% safe and every 10 seconds a teenager gets infected with an STD, I decided to remain a virgin until my wedding night." Vanessa"Now I plan to wait until marriage because I've realized that being a virgin is something smart and safe! There are NO regrets that way!" Sonia"I learned that there are over 20 STDs you can get if you decide to have sex which, in my view, is very stupid! My virginity is very important to me, and I intend to keep it that way!" Maricela"Virginity is one of the most important gifts we have." Natalie"Virginity should be one of the most important factors when you are in a relationship." Patricia"Hold onto your virginity. It will keep you from a pregnancy or an STD so you can do whatever you want in life." Pat


All of us long to be loved and accepted by others. We want to "be included" in the group, to belong to those we see as important: parents, relatives, friends, boyfriends or girlfriends, and if we choose to marry, our husbands or wives. The need to be loved and accepted is undoubtedly one of the greatest needs any of us has. We are born with that need, and most of us spend much of our lives seeking to find and experience it.But it isn't just a matter of finding people who love and accept us, but we also want people who honestly enjoy being around us. They enjoy our company, and go out of their way to spend time with us. When we find these kinds of people, we know they approve of us - they not only love and accept us, but they actually like us.We also long to experience a degree of affection - to have people who will put their arms around us and draw us close; people who will hug us from time to time; people who will even go so far as to give us a kiss, perhaps on the cheek or on the lips. We need the warmth of physical contact which comes with physical displays of affection. It helps to convince us that indeed we are loved and accepted by others.All of this brings us to the topic of dating and marriage. Not everyone gets married. However, because nearly everyone does, it is important to remember that one of the most important decisions any of us will ever make is deciding which person we will marry, and because dating usually leads to marriage, let's take a look at both of them.back to top
DECIDING WHO WILL YOU DATE AND MARRYIf choosing a marriage partner is one of the most important decisions of your life, and if it is true that you will marry someone you dated, then it is very important for you to make good decisions about which persons you will date. (The word "date" as it will be used in this section simply means a person you relate to as your boyfriend or girlfriend. So even if you cannot officially "go out on a date" until you are older, it is possible you still might have a boyfriend or girlfriend relationship prior to that time.)So what are you looking for in a future husband or wife? In other words, what qualities or characteristics do you hope to find in the person you will someday marry and hopefully spend the rest of your life with? Maybe you have never given this any thought, but perhaps you should. You see, if you have no idea what you are looking for in a husband or wife, then how will you know what to look for in someone you might date? Many young people start boyfriend-girlfriend relationships with people they are simply attracted to without taking time to see what kind of person he or she is. That person might be good looking, funny, popular, and interested in you. That's great. But what is he or she really like deep down inside? After all, what's on the inside is of greater importance than what is on the outside. Physical appearances will change, but the inner qualities (or lack of them) may last a lifetime.back to top
CHARACTERISTICS YOU WANT IN YOUR FUTURE MARRIAGE PARTNERTherefore, we invite you to take a moment to look over the list of qualities and characteristics listed below. These are the top thirty qualities or characteristics Teen Choices students have come up with through the years. They are not in any particular order, but as you read through the list, which ones do you believe are the most important ones? Why not take a piece of paper, and write down your top ten. Think of it this way: You would never marry someone who did not have at least these ten qualities or characteristics. Therefore, is it safe to say you wouldn't ever choose to become seriously involved - date - someone who did not have these qualities? Right? Have some fun with this. You may be surprised at what you discover about yourself from this little exercise.
Good Personality
Good Communicator
Good Parent
Good Reputation
Sense of Humor/Funny
Loves and Accepts Me
Good Moral Values
Not Abusive
Not Jealous
Same Religious Faith
Accepted by my family
Friendship Sensitive
Did you find it hard to choose ten or was it difficult only choosing ten? Either way, hopefully this helped you see that there are a number of important characteristics you hope to find in someone you would date and possibly marry.So what are you going to do in the future when it comes to choosing who will be your boyfriend or girlfriend? Why not be very selective in who you even start to get seriously involved with. Take time to get to know that person before you make any commitment to be his or her girlfriend or boyfriend. As you get to know the person, perhaps he or she is attractive, has a good personality, and a good sense of humor. But you may also realize that this individual is not always respectful of you and others or you sense that he or she is not exactly the "faithful-type". You deserve to date and ultimately marry someone you can trust, someone who will always treat you with respect, someone who is perhaps your best friend, someone who will always be faithful and true "until death". Don't settle for anyone who does not meet your expectations, and you will never regret it.back to topFAITHFULSpeaking of expectations, we at Teen Choices have taught more than 30,000 teenagers, and when our high school students were asked which of the above characteristics were their three most important ones, we discovered something very interesting. Nearly all of our students chose faithful as one of the top three characteristics they would look for in someone they would date and choose to marry. It seems almost everyone feels being faithful and true is a high priority. When students are asked why faithfulness was so important, here are some of the most common kinds of responses. They want to marry someone who will:
be "totally devoted" to them
not "betray" them by having an affair with another person
not "bring home an STD" from someone they had sex with
be "true to them for the rest of their lives"
"respect" them enough to never "cheat" on them
"love and accept" them long after the wedding day
back to topVIRGINS AND FAITHFULNESSAnother characteristic that is high on the list of many teenagers is marrying someone who is a virgin. Now people who are not virgins often get married, and make excellent husbands and wives. But teens say there are a lot of advantages to marrying someone who has never had sex - a virgin. Below is a list of some of the most common advantages teens give for wanting to marry a virgin. If they marry a virgin they say the person they marry:
will not have an STD
probably will not be HIV-infected (unless they got it from a blood transfusion or some other means)
will not have a child from a previous boyfriend or girlfriend relationship
will never compare them to anyone else sexually because they have never had sex with anyone else
will help make sex a special, unique experience (if neither has had sex before)
has shown a great deal of respect and love for those he or she has dated by refusing to have sex with any of them
will be more likely to be faithful to them in the years ahead
There's that word again - faithful. Let's talk more about this. Suppose there was this teenager who thought it was no big deal to have sex with any girlfriend of his. So he has sex when he is 15 with some girlfriend, and then a year later, he has sex with his new girlfriend. A couple of years later he has a new girlfriend, and before long he starts having sex with her. Eventually he goes off to college, meets this young woman, and - you guessed it - he starts having sex with her, and eventually marries her. As you probably know, there are a number of teens who are just like this guy: They don't think there is anything wrong with having sex with their current girlfriend or boyfriend. After all, they think, a lot of people do it.But suppose there is another guy. For a variety of reasons, he does not think it is right to have sex with anyone he is not married to. He has a girlfriend when he is 15, but even though it is tempting and some of his friends are sexually active, he is determined not to have sex with her. He is committed to waiting until marriage. But a year or so later, he has a brand new girlfriend. Once again, he is tempted to become sexually involved with her, but he is strong in his decision to wait, so he doesn't have sex with her either. After all, he believes it isn't right to have sex with anyone besides his wife. Now he is in college, and he meets this fantastic girl. Before long, he is madly in love with her. However, he still does not believe it is right to have sex with anyone unless he is married to her, so he doesn't. Several years go by, and he decides she is the one he wants to marry and spend the rest of his life with. She agrees to marry him, and soon they get engaged. However, he still believes it is wrong to have sex with anyone he is not married to, and so six months after he and his fiance get engaged, their wedding day finally arrives, and they become husband and wife. The first person he has sex with is with his wife on their wedding night.Now here is the question: Since marrying someone you believe will be faithful to you is probably one of your highest priorities, which of these two guys do you think is more likely to be faithful? The first guy who didn't see anything wrong with having sex with any girl he dated or the second one who stayed true to his commitment to wait until his wedding night to have sex? Now obviously there are no guarantees, but most, if not all of you, probably would choose the second one like most of our high school students. Why? Because the second guy - the one who chose not to have sex prior to marriage - proved he could control his sexual desires, so he is far more likely to be the faithful-type. The first guy chose not to control his sexual desires, so we have no reason to believe he will control his sexual desires in the future. For all we know, if he meets some woman he is attracted to years after he gets married, he may think, "It's not so bad having sex with someone other than my wife. After all, a lot of people have ‘affairs' ."You see, if you marry a virgin, you are marrying someone who has shown a great deal of sexual self-control, so sexual self-control can be added to our list of advantages for marrying someone who has never had sex, i.e., a virgin. In short, faithfulness requires sexual self-control, so if you want to marry someone who is likely to be faithful and true to you, why not marry a virgin or someone who has chosen "secondary virginity" (he or she already had sex some time ago, but then decided not to do it again until his or her wedding day). Both virgins and secondary virgins show sexual self-control - one of the primary ingredients in faithfulness, which is a characteristic we all hope to find exhibited in the one we marry.back to top
One final note along these lines. If you yourself want to be faithful to your future husband or wife, you should make a decision right now to wait until marriage to have sex (abstinence) or stop doing it until you get married (secondary virginity). As mentioned above, both require sexual self-control, but the person who refuses to control himself or herself sexually is a person who is not very strong and probably cannot be trusted to remain true to his or her future marriage partner. Think about it.There is a great deal more to be discussed about dating and marriage. However, let us conclude by listing several things which will help you and other teens enjoy your dating relationships without a lot of serious consequences, guilt, and regret. Carefully read through these items, evaluate your perspective toward each item, and then make a decision as to what you will do in the future for your sake, the sake of those you date, and for the sake of anyone you may someday marry.back to top
1. Make a commitment to wait.It is a known fact that young people who make pledges to remain virgins are far less likely to have sex than those who have not.
2. Find a friend who has the same commitment.Having a close friend who not only feels the way you do but will help you stick with your decision to wait.
3. Say "No" With Confidence.Choosing not to have any kind of sexual relationship before you get married is nothing to be ashamed of! Your words and your actions should make it perfectly clear that when you say "no" to someone who tries to talk you into having sex, you mean "no". Those who truly love you will respect your decision to wait.
4. Set your standards well in advance.Know exactly where you are going to "draw the line" (how far is far enough) in physically expressing your affection. There is a simple rule you should consider following: Never allow anyone to touch you anywhere your underwear touches whether over or under your clothes. If you stick with this decision and don't do anything more than hug and kiss, you will avoid all serious consequences, and will never have any regrets.
5. Let your decision be known.As a relationship begins to grow, let your boyfriend or girlfriend know the standards you have set. You may want to explain why you feel the way you do, but you shouldn't have to. Your decision to wait until marriage is a decision others who truly care about you will accept. It is also important to tell your friends you've decided to wait, and encourage them to do the same.
6. Do not get involved with someone you think might try to pressure youYour decision about sex is one of the most important decisions you will ever make, so why waste time with someone who does not respect your decision?
7. Avoid risky places and situations.Don't allow yourself to get into a situation where it may be hard to hold to your commitment to wait. For example, don't be alone with a boyfriend/girlfriend in a secluded place, don't go to parties where there is no adult supervision, and don't drink alcohol or use drugs.
8. Avoid sexually explicit movies, music, and TV programs.Many of the lyrics in today's songs and the programs on TV or at the movies lead people to believe that "everybody's doing it" and "nothing bad will happen" if you do. The facts make it clear that neither of these is true.
9. Avoid using alcohol or drugs.Alcohol and other drugs dramatically affect your ability to control your actions, so your chances of having sex greatly increase if you are under the influence of some drug. (NOTE: One study found that 60% of women who got infected with an STD were drunk at the time, and 90% of rapes on college campuses happen when one or both of the people involved have been drinking.)
10. Plan your dates.Don't just "get together" without specific plans. Decide what you will do on each date, so you won't find yourself in a situation where it might be very difficult for you to stick with your decision not to have sex.
11. Weigh the consequences.Whenever you are tempted to have sex, remind yourself of some of the problems you might experience such as unplanned pregnancies, STDS, AIDS, emotional pain, feeling used, getting a bad reputation, and guilt.
12. If someone keeps pressuring you, break off the relationship.True love never pressures anyone to do something that might hurt that person, but always respects others enough to wait!
(The above tips were adapted from Joe S. McIlhaney, M.D., SEX: WHAT YOU DON"T KNOW CAN KILL YOU, pages 100-103.)back to top
FINAL THOUGHTSHopefully the information contained in this section will be helpful as you move through this period in your life called dating which, for most of you, will lead to marriage. There are a lot of decisions you will have to make during this time in your life, but please keep the following things in mind:
You alone can decide who you will choose to be your boyfriend or girlfriend;
You alone can decide to control your sexual desires by choosing to wait until marriage to have sex or to stop having sex until you get married;
You alone can decide how far you will go (where you will "draw the line") in physically showing your love and affection for those you date;
You alone can decide how best to let others know you will not engage in any kind of sexual relationship before marriage;
You alone can choose not to allow others to pressure you into doing things you honestly don't feel are right for you;
You alone can decide not to drink alcohol, do drugs, or anything else which might cause you to make bad decisions when you are with others especially boyfriends or girlfriends;
You alone can decide whom you will marry;
You alone can decide to remain faithful and true to the one you marry.
What conclusions can be drawn from the above information? Generally speaking, are 12 to 14 year olds far more likely to have sex with their boyfriend or girlfriend than older adolescents? Indeed they are. That explains why it is obvious that the earlier serious relationships ("dating") begins, the more likely the young person will become sexually involved. Therefore, this information explains why many parents do not want their children to get "too serious" with a boyfriend or girlfriend at a young age. In fact, a number of parents through the years have discouraged or even forbidden their young adolescents to date until they are at least 16 years of age. This research would indicate that this is probably a good idea. (Echenique, Jeannie, USA TODAY, "Early Dating May Lead To Early Sex", November 5, 1986, p. D1.)Another interesting fact is that once teenagers start having sex, they are more likely to have several sexual partners before they get married. The Centers for Disease Control study1 on premarital sexual experience among adolescent females reported that of the girls who became sexually active before the age of eighteen, 75% had had two or more partners, and 45% had had four or more. It may be of interest to also note that young people who had sex by the age of 15 were more likely to be dissatisfaction with their current marriage and their current sex life2 as


Is HIV infection a serious problem for young people in America? The following facts indicate that HIV infection is occurring at an alarming rate among teens in the U.S. (The information below was found in a textbook entitled, AIDS UPDATE 1999 which was written by Gerald J. Stine. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall, 1999.)
At least two (2) teenagers in America become HIV-infected each hour! That is approximately 350 each week engage in some kind of risky behavior, e.g., have sex, and become infected. (This number is expected to increase dramatically in the next five to ten years according to the Office of National AIDS Policy).
One-fourth (25%) of all new HIV infections in the U.S. is an individual between the ages of 13 and 20.
Federal health agencies estimate that teenagers make up about 20% of the HIV-infected population.
AIDS is the sixth leading cause of death among persons aged 15 to 24.
60% of new HIV infections in women now occur during their adolescent years.
More than 500,000 people in the United States under the age of 29 are HIV-infected.
34% of all heterosexual adults with AIDS were infected as teenagers.
85% of adolescent females contracted HIV infection through heterosexual intercourse.
COLLEGE STUDENTS AND AIDSTwo out of every 1,000 college students are HIV-infected. Therefore, with 12,5 million students enrolled in American colleges and universities, the rate of 2 in 1,000 means there are about 25,000 HIV-infected college students today.
According to the World Health Organization, a woman may be ten times more likely to get infected with HIV from a man than a man is from a women. Why? Because women are biologically more vulnerable to HIV infection than men due to the fact that there is a higher concentration of HIV in semen than there is in vaginal and cervical fluids. Furthermore, the vaginal area has a much larger area for exposure to HIV than the penis does, and during the act of sexual intercourse, the vagina often suffers microscopic abrasions causing certain immune system cells (lymphocytes) to be drawn to the area which in turn makes vaginal tissue more susceptible to HIV-infected semen. Normally, abrasions do not occur within the male urethra. (Gerald J. Stine, AIDS UPDATE 1999, pp. 331 & 337.)Because of the vulnerability to HIV-infection mentioned above, it is not too surprising that of the total reported cases of HIV infections acquired through heterosexual contact in the United States, 65% are women. Tragically, AIDS is currently the leading cause of death among women of child-bearing age in the United States and worldwide, every minute of every day, every day of the year, four women become infected with HIV, and every minute between one and two women die from AIDS in the world. Finally, beginning in 1997, about 50% of all new HIV infections in the world occur in women.
INFECTIONS AMONG HETEROSEXUALSThe World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that up to 90% of all HIV infections worldwide will be transmitted through heterosexual relationships.
Fifty-nine percent (59%) of all reported AIDS cases are the direct result of sex between men, and the chief of the retrovirology laboratory at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, Dr. Robert Redfield, reports that 50 percent of male homosexuals in San Francisco are now infected with the HIV virus.
As stated above, AIDS is currently the leading cause of death among women of child-bearing age in the United States (Washington Post--Health, March 19, 1996, p. 5.), and every minute between one and two women die from AIDS in the world. Therefore, it is obvious that a growing number of children are being orphaned by AIDS, and experts project that unless the current trend shifts dramatically, about 144,000 children and young adults will have lost their mothers to AIDS by the beginning of the 21st century. (Washington Post--Health, March 19, 1996, p. 5 and
Though some people in the United States do not believe HIV infection and AIDS are serious problems in this country, the following facts reveal the reality of the effect HIV and AIDS are having upon this nation:
In the United States, for 1996, about 175 people a day were diagnosed with AIDS and between 120 and 200 a day become HIV-infected. Every 13 minutes, one person dies of AIDS in the United States. 50% of all new HIV infections in the U.S. are in people under 25 years of age.

The estimated number of HIV-infected persons in the United States is 1,200,000. ("The Global Epidemic", TIME, December 30, 1996-January 6, 1997,

More than 51 million people worldwide are now living with the AIDS virus. (Gerald J. Stine, AIDS UPDATE 1999, 16,000 new victims are infected every day. (The United Nations reports previous figures underestimated how widespread HIV-infection was by one-third.)
One in every 100 sexually active adults worldwide is infected with HIV.
Nine out of ten (90%) of HIV-infected people do NOT know it!
The epidemic has struck youth the hardest because most of HIV-infected individuals are under 25 years old. (Christopher Burns, "AIDS More Widespread Than Thought", (UNAIDS Report), The Associated Press, Nov. 26, 1997.)
Nearly half of those who died of AIDS in 1997 were women. (Christopher Burns, "AIDS More Widespread Than Thought", (UNAIDS Report), The Associated Press, Nov. 26, 1997.)
In 1997, 460,000 children under 15 died of AIDS. (Christopher Burns, "AIDS More Widespread Than Thought", (UNAIDS Report), The Associated Press, Nov. 26, 1997.)
Worldwide in 1996, every second six people became infected with HIV and every second three people died of AIDS! ("The Global Epidemic", TIME, December 30, 1996-January 6, 1997, p. 78).
Worldwide, beginning in 1999, of the 51 million people infected with HIV, 24.7 million have AIDS.
75% of HIV transmission worldwide is associated with vaginal intercourse.
The only way a person can know for sure whether or not he or she is HIV- infected is to have what is commonly called an "AIDS test". In actuality, the test does not determine who has AIDS, but who is infected with the AIDS virus, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).
The more common test is called the enzyme linked immunosorbent assay or ELISA (el-i-sa). The test reveals whether a person has been exposed to HIV by detecting the presence of HIV antibodies, an indication that infection has begun.
How is the test performed? A sample of blood is taken from the arm and analyzed in a laboratory. If the first ELISA test is positive (which indicates the person is HIV-infected), a second ELISA test on the same blood sample is done. If the second test is positive, another test, called Western blot, is run to confirm the earlier results of the ELISA tests.
What does an "HIV-positive" test mean? It suggests that the person has HIV antibodies thus indicating the individual has been infected with the virus. However, it may take one to six months before a person gets an accurate AIDS test. An "HIV-negative" test means the tests did not reveal the presence of any HIV-antibodies. But there is such a thing as a "false negative", which simply means the person is infected, yet it is too early for it to show up in an AIDS tests. Individuals who think they might have been exposed to HIV should make sure they get tested at least six months after they feel they might have gotten infected. Studies have shown that 50% of HIV-infected persons show measurable HIV antibodies by 3 months after infection and 90% do by 6 months. A very small percentage of infected individuals may not get accurate tests for one year or more.
The first home HIV test, developed by a Johnson & Johnson subsidiary, Direct Access Diagnostics, was approved by the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) on May 14, 1996. Using the $ 40 test involves sending a dried blood sample to a certified laboratory for HIV antibody testing and calling for their results, identified by a number, a week later. If the test is negative, the caller hears a recorded message and has the option of speaking to a counselor. If the results are positive or inconclusive, the caller is connected to a counselor who can provide referrals to doctors.(NOTE: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that only 14 percent of people voluntarily tested received any counseling afterward and more than 60% of Americans at risk for HIV have NOT been tested.
When AIDS began to become known throughout the world in 1981, many people started promoting the use of condoms as a means of helping to reduce the risk of infection. Much of the literature concerning HIV and AIDS encourages people to "use protection", i.e., condoms. Emphasis on condom use might lead some to conclude that as long as condoms are used during sexual activity, it is almost impossible to become infected. But how effective are condoms in preventing HIV infection anyway?As you probably know, condoms are thin, protective tubes, generally made of latex, which are worn over the penis during sexual activity. Condoms are not only used in an effort to prevent HIV infection, but also to help prevent unplanned pregnancies and the transmission of sexually transmitted diseases such as genital herpes, gonorrhea, chlamydia, human papilloma virus, and syphilis.However, as the information below reveals, condoms may provide some protection against HIV infection, but there has never been any research which indicates that condoms ever work 100% of the time. Therefore, there is no such thing as "safe sex". Any kind of sexual relationship with someone who might be infected with the AIDS virus (HIV) is potentially dangerous even if a condom is used. The only 100% "safe sex" is abstinence - choosing to wait until marriage to have sex.Below is a list of research information regarding condom use and HIV infection. As you can see, there is no evidence that condoms will work all of the time. Therefore, every sexual relationship could lead to HIV infection and ultimately lead to someone's death. Why? Because most people infected with the AIDS virus do not know it (90%), and that HIV-infected person may be the one with whom you are having sex.
An issue of Social Science and Medicine reported that Dr. Susan Weller of the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston analyzed 11 U.S. HIV studies to gauge condom effectiveness. From her research, Dr. Weller estimated that condoms are "only 69 percent effective in preventing heterosexual HIV transmission". This means the failure rate is approximately 31% or 1 out of 3."(Caught!", FOCUS ON THE FAMILY CITIZEN, April 18, 1994, p. 3.)
Nearly 1 in 3 will contract AIDS from infected partners with 100% condom use.(Dr. Margaret A. Fischl, Journal of the American Medicine Association, February 1987.)
A study carried out in Florida of heterosexual couples showed that 30% had become infected with HIV from their spouse even though they knew their partners were HIV-positive and they conscientiously used condoms.(Flechl M.A. et al., "Heterosexual transmission of HIV, relationship of sexual practices to zero conversion," III International AIDS Conference, Washington, D.C., 1987.)
A workshop sponsored by several U.S. government agencies concluded that some research indicates the failure rate of condoms in preventing HIV infection was approximately 15% when used during vaginal intercourse. In other words, 1 out of 6 failed to prevent HIV infection during this particular type of heterosexual behavior.("Workshop Summary: Scientific Evidence on Condom Effectiveness for Sexually Transmitted Disease (STD) Prevention." July 20, 2001. Available at: www.niaid.nih. gov/dmid/stds/condomreport.pdf.)
The Department of Health and Human Services released a report stating "there are no clinical data supporting the value of condoms in preventing HIV."(A. Parachini, "Condoms and AIDS: How Safe is 'Safe'?," Los Angeles Times, 18 August 1987.)
"We cannot tell people how much protection condoms give."(Dr. Malcolm Potts, one of the inventors of condoms lubricated with spermicides, and the president of Family Health International. "Condoms: Experts Fear False Sense of Security," The New York Times, August 18, 1987.)
"Health institutions have been telling people, 'for safe sex, use a condom.' Our point is that while the condom gives a measure of protection, there is no research to show the exact protection...If your life depends on how safe a particular brand of condom is, wouldn't you want to know its effectiveness?"
(Dr. Bruce Voeller, president of the Mariposa Foundation which specializes in the prevention of sexually transmitted diseases.
The AIDS virus is 450 times smaller than the sperm cell
"You just can't tell people it's all right to do whatever you want so long as you wear a condom. It's just too dangerous a disease to say that."(Dr. Harold Jaffe, Center for Disease Control Chief of Epidemiology, "Condoms: Experts Fear False Sense of Security,"

I'll always miss you

look back on that day and really think of how much of a fool I was. To think that I would just forget about it and move on with my life was just a dream. It is still and will always be there. I aborted my unborn child, and no one close to me knows. I went to the clinic by myself. I drove the 45 minutes there and back. I walked past the protesters that walked up to my car to tell me I was a murderer. I walked the walk of shame opening the doors to my reality. The whole time not shedding a tear. Just staring at the other girls feeling worse for them then myself. I talked to a girl that was 15 weeks along. She was already showing. I was "lucky" because I was only 6 weeks. I found out I was pregnant on a Monday and was in the clinic that Wednesday. I wanted to just get it over with. And that's what I did. I laid back on the bed and stared at the butterflies and flowers on the ceiling. Waiting for everything to just be over. The doctor commented on my not making any sounds and I just closed my eyes waiting to get off of the horrible table. I walked down the hallway to the recovery room where other girls were sobbing and doubled over in pain. I didn't want the juice or crackers that the nurses offered me. I just wanted to leave. She told me I could go after changing and I wanted to run out of there. As I was leaving that girl that I had talked to had her blanket up to her nose sobbing her heart out. As I walked past her I reached for her hand and squeezed it. We looked at each other with the look that we had made the biggest decision of our lives and it was never going to be the same again. And it never has been. I still think about all of those girls that were in the clinic with me that day. How are they dealing with it all now? Does it go away or stay with you forever? Do they wonder what life would be with our children? I know I do. I wonder if he/she would have looked like me or the father. I look in his eyes every morning and see our child. A child that I'll never meet. A child that I'll never hold. A child I'll never kiss. But it is a child that I will always love with all my heart and I wish I could bring you back to me. I'm sorry I was weak and selfish. I'll never forgive myself and will always miss you.

I was 18 and Confused

just felt I needed to share my story. I was 18 and it was the end of march or beginning of april when I found out I was pregnant. My boyfriend and I (now fiance) were very confused on what to do. He had his deposit down for his college and I was about to do the same for the same school. When I told him the news he immediately dropped out of the college that was a few hours away and enrolled in community college for the fall. We both wanted to keep the baby but he also said he would stand by whatever decision I would make. We were together for almost 2 years when this happened. Well we told his parents first and they were really supportive. We both were 18 and had a strong relationship. My mom and family on the other hand were VERY angry. My mom kept pushing for abortion and I cried EVERYDAY because of the way my family was putting pressure on me. I did not know what to do so I went along with my family and had an abortion. I seemed like the only young woman there who actually cared about what I was about to do. I cried the entire time there and I knew my mom would be furious if I didn't go through with it. The procedure was painful physically and emotionally. I felt awful. I was so angry with myself. A few months went by since and my boyfriend finally confessed how he felt about the abortion. He cried to me about how much he was looking forward to being a daddy and he would have done whatever it took to help support us. I cried my eyes out that day because if I would have heard him say those words the day I had the abortion I would have walked right out of there. I confided in a close friend of mine about what happened and she turned her back on me and told people at school and before I knew it I was being harassed. Being called a baby killer and other really harsh comments were made. I went home crying EVERYDAY until graduation day. I was so afraid that someone would stand up at graduation when they announced my name and say something rude because that was how bad I was harassed. I'm a pretty quiet girl and never got in trouble in school but when this one girl in my English class kept making comments to her friend about me I got up in her face and cursed her out. I had about enough of everyone's taunting and harassing and she was the last straw. I was sent to the office but did not get in trouble, they were aware of the situation that was going on, which nothing was really done about it. I will never forget my senior year, it was the worst year of school, instead of remembering the good I will always remember the way my classmates treated me. I am now 21 and have a beautiful almost 3 month old son. He is my everything. I am still with my boyfriend and we're planning to get married within a year. I will never make that decision again and I regret listening to my mother. I still think about my son or daughter to this day. So girls before you go have an abortion really think it through especially if you really want to keep your baby. Don't let anyone else talk you out of it. It's your baby and that baby will love you for the rest of your life.

The National Day to Prevent Teen Pregnancy

The National Day to Prevent Teen Pregnancy a Success

Hundreds of thousands of teens nationwide participated in the eighth annual National Day to Prevent Teen Pregnancy. The purpose of the National Day is straightforward. Too many teens still think “It can’t happen to me.” The National Day helps teens understand that it can happen to them and that they need to think seriously about what they would do in the moment.
In 2009, more than 450,000 people partipated in online National Day activities—up from 300,000 in 2008. On the National Day, and throughout the entire month of May, teens nationwide were asked to go to The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy’s teen website – – and take a short, scenario-based quiz (available in English and Spanish). The quiz challenged young people to consider what they would do in a number of sexual situations. National Day Quiz discussion guides for parents and teens were also available and were downloaded thousands of times.
In addition to the National Day Quiz, thousands of teens entered the Stay Teen Relationship Reality Pop Quiz Contest by completing a short quiz about healthy relationships. The quiz application was available as a widget that teens could “grab” and put on their MySpace or Facebook profiles, blogs, and websites.
Each year, we ask teens to tell us what they thought about the National Day Quiz in a post-quiz evaluation survey and many do. Among the findings from this year’s survey:
74% said the Quiz made them think about what they might do in such situations;61% said the Quiz made the risks of sex and teen pregnancy seem more real to them;
56% said they’d learned something new from the Quiz about the consequences of sex;
62% said they’d talk to their friends about the situations described in the Quiz;
53% said the Quiz made them think about things they hadn’t thought about before;
54% said they’d encourage others to take the Quiz;
59% said some of the situations in the Quiz were things that they or their friends had faced; and
45% said they’d talk to their parents or other adults about the situations described in the Quiz.
Additionally, one-helf (50%) of the respondants reported taking the quiz as part of a school activity and 35% said they took the quiz at home. Nearly one-third of teens (31%) learned about the quiz from a parent, teacher, or another trusted adult and more than one-quarter (27%) of teens learned about the quiz from one of our National Day partners.
Partnerships. The National Campaign works with a variety of partners to make the National Day a success year after year.
National Partnerships. National Day partners include a diverse group of media outlets, health sector leaders, education leaders, businesses, youth-serving groups, groups representing elected officials, fatherhood and male involvement groups, faith-based groups, and other prominent national organizations. These groups promote the National Day to their members, affiliates, customers, audiences, and contacts in ways the National Campaign could never have afforded or accomplished on its own. For an up-to-date list of this year's National Day Partners, visit our Partners page.
Media Partnerships. Each year, The National Campaign works with a variety of online and traditional media partners to spread the word about the National Day. Among this year's partners are ABC, ABC Family, NBC, The N, Seventeen,, Maury, and many others. For more information about our National Day media partnerships, visit our Media Partners page.
State and Local Partnerships. The National Day continues to be a remarkable organizing event for states and communities nationwide. To help these state and local promotional efforts, the National Campaign develops and distributes a variety of teen-friendly materials—such as National Day wristbands and pens—to help raise awareness of the National Day among teens and adult professionals who work with teens. For a state-by-state breakdown of National Day activities, please visit our What's Happening in 2009? section. If you are organized a 2009 National Day event and don't see it listed on our site, please tell us about it.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

daquan jenkins

daquan jenkins
Advisory 9-1

Just as the 1830's have been called the age of Jackson, it is probably fair to refer to the 1930's, politically at least, as the age of FDR. Franklin Delano Roosevelt was the dominant political presence of the age, serving to reinspire faith in the presidency after Herbert Hoover who was blamed by many for causing the stock market crash and subsequent depression. Roosevelt almost singlehandly forged a new political alliance between the working classes of the Northern cities, the farmers of the West and South (both black and white), and generally every group hurt by the Depression. Roosevelt's policies for recovery, his use of the radio in order to talk directly to the nation in his "fireside chats," and his appeals for the government to remember the "forgotten man" all won him massive support among the people.
This support resulted in his winning re-election in 1936 with all but eight electoral votes cast in his favor. Moreover despite the fact that no president had ever run for a third term, Roosevelt's popularity gained him victory in 1940 (and 1944 for that matter). This cover, published in the midst of the 1940 campaign season, show Roosevelt wearing many hats (quite literally) as he attempts to portray himself as a man of the people and as a representative of a number of segments of the population that he hoped would again vote for him in November of that year Despite the massive margins of victory which Roosevelt garnered and the general public support he received throughout his presidency, he was far from universally loved.
Especially during his second term, many conservatives (including many Southern Democrats who disagreed with his leanings on race) came to view his New Deal policies as unjustified and unconstitutional extensions of the power of the federal government. This growing conservative opposition resulted in Roosevelt being forced to step back with some of his initiatives lest they be defeated. In addition to the political opposition he suffered, Roosevelt came to be passionately hated by upper class Northerners who viewed him as a "traitor to his class" because of his policies and rhetoric. Many went so far as to even refuse to mention Roosevelt's name referring to him only as "that man." Given the target audience of the New Yorker, one suspects that this cover may actually be more a subtle form of mockery then a celebration of FDR's populism
In January, the number of unemployed in America reaches four million.
On February 10, in Chicago more than one hundred people are arrested for distributing whiskey. Bootlegging has increased as opposition grows to Prohibition, instituted in 1919 by the Eighteenth Amendment to the Constitution.
On June 17, President Herbert Hoover signs into law the Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act, setting tariffs on imported goods at the highest rates in American history.
On July 3, President Hoover signs into law an act establishing the Veterans Administration.
On July 21, the Senate confirms the London Naval Treaty, in which the United States, Great Britain, and Japan agree to limitations on the size of their navies. The treaty supplements the Washington Naval Treaty of 1922, which also includes limitation agreements.
On August 8, President Hoover makes public a federal report stating that one...
[The entire page is 3715 words long]
The stock-market crash of October 1929 set the tone for the congressional elections of 1930. With more than five million people unemployed, fear and uncertainty gripped large portions of the electorate. Democrats campaigned primarily on the issue of the economy, accusing the Republican president and the Republican-controlled Congress of failing to deal with the yearlong economic downturn. Prohibition was a secondary, but important, issue in the states. Alignment for or against Prohibition was nonpartisan, some Democrats and some Republicans falling on either side of the issue, The New York Times estimated that prior to the 1930 elections 344 members of the House of Representatives supported Prohibition, but after the elections only 298 congressmen-elect supported it.
In the United States the greatest legacy of the years 1930-1939 was the creation of the modern bureaucratic welfare state, which arose in response to the worst economic collapse in national history. Unlike other economic crises, the Great Depression was not short-lived. It persisted throughout the 1930s, affecting all aspects of society. The critical political controversy of the decade focused on how government ought to be used to bring the Depression to an end. Every political quarter proposed solutions. In the desperate times of severe economic crisis patience often grew thin, and debates became strident. The major political contest took place between Republicans and Democrats. Together these parties consistently drew about 97 percent of ballots cast, and the debate over how to end the Depression was generally carried out on ideological terrain defined.....
Republican Herbert Hoover was president when the stock market crashed on 29 October 1929. This crash on Wall Street in New York was part of a series of events — a sort of chain reaction — in which unemployment, credit contraction, deflation, depressed agricultural prices, and international problems all played parts. With the economy spiraling downward, the pressing question became what, if anything, government should do. President Hoover's first response to the onset of the Depression was to allow traditional market forces to make correctives with a minimum of government intervention.
In this view the overheated economy would self-adjust if given time. As Andrew Mellon, Hoover's secretary of the treasury, declared, it was necessary to "purge the rottenness out of the system" by allowing the downturn to run its expected course. Hoover himself asserted that "Economic depression cannot be cured by legislative action or executive pronouncements. Economic wounds must be healed.Using the democratic measuring stick of popular votes, there can be no doubt that Franklin D. Roosevelt, the Democrats, and the New Deal dominated the 1930s. Roosevelt's take-charge, action-oriented, pragmatic brand of politics was welcomed by most Americans who had watched as the number of shanty towns — called "Hoovervilles" by many — grew larger. Alongside poverty, strikes by industrial workers increased and were sometimes violent and bloody. Voices from the political Left and Right captured people's attention in ways that they had not done in pre-Depression years.
In response Roosevelt's political program promised a reshuffling of the cards of American government, economy, and society in a "New Deal" for the American.When Franklin D. Roosevelt took office on 4 March 1933, unemployment was at 25 percent nationwide. In Toledo, Ohio, three-quarters of those looking for work could find none. There was no federal welfare system, no federal unemployment insurance, no public housing. When people did not find work, they turned of necessity to charitable organizations that were usually run by churches and synagogues. The enormity of the Depression overwhelmed these traditional means of aid to the needy, and it became clear to the president that government-run relief efforts were required. Within exactly one hundred days of taking office, Roosevelt introduced fifteen major legislative bills to Congress.

Donye Harris 1970's

In the 1970s there was high inflation. There was energy shortage because of world wide oil shortage. There were low supplies of things like jobs, houses, cars and many other things. The economics of the 1970s was just as bad as it is today, its just more money.

During the energy shortage, there was also oil shortage. All around the world nation started to conserve their non-renewable oil supplies. They did this to maybe have some in the near future. They began to depend on the Middle East for oil because they didn’t have enough.

While the energy shortage was happening, a war started between the Arabs and Israel . It was oil called the “Arab Oil Embargo” that was placed on the west by the Arabs. The largest oil producers were Saudi Arabia, Iraq, and Kuwait. Because of this, gas prices would go from 35 cents to 90 cents.

There were high demands in the 70s. There were a lot of unemployed people. This was oil because of high inflation. People began to expect continuous increases in the price of goods. This caused demand which pushed up prices.

There were fewer jobs, cars and many other things in the 70s. President Jimmy Carter tried to help the unemployment. He tried to help them by increasing government spending. He also established voluntary wage. Something that caused high inflation was that investors and creditors had no confidence in the bank system.

The three main reasons to high inflation was first, it was because until the 1980s no influential policy makers until Paul Volcker became Chairman of the Federal Reserve who placed a sufficiently high priority on stopping inflation. Second, the policies of the 60s left economic policy makers of the 70s with bad dilemmas. They basically had bad luck which also led to high inflation. Third, it was that the great depression made it hard to believe that the business cycle was a fluctuation around rather than a shortfall below potential output and potential employment.

The poor economy was mainly because of the horrible amounts of unemployment. There were returning soldiers from Vietnam and the woman work force. It went from 3.3 percent of unemployed people to 8 percent of unemployed people. All of this almost caused another depression.

Some people are even saying that the 2009 economy is starting to be the same as the 70s economy. The oil crisis was really bad. With all of the gas prices raising more demands began to happen.

The 1970s economy didn’t get better till the 1980s because of the chairman. It took a long time for it to get better because nobody wanted to take the chairman position.

The economy of the 1970s was bad. With all of the gas prices raisin and the amounts of unemployed people. Also cars and other things, hopefully the economy we are in now will only have progress and won’t get worse. Like the war stopping, already the gas prices have gotten lower so it should only get better.

Chole Muldrow- 1970's economy

Chloe’ Muldrow
March 17, 2009
Section 9-1

During the 70’s the economy was disappointing the expectations that Americans built up during the past World War II years. We had about two oil crises of 1973-74 and 1979 that served as bookends for slow economic growth. This led to a new term being coined which was called stagflation. It led a long lesson for great institutions of the U.S towards big business, the government and etc. of their powerless affect to the economy.
Since the Great Depression the 1970’s was the most tragic time for the American economy. Shortly after a quarter of this century the growth and prosperity, the downturn of this century hit with a powerful force. Cost went up, unemployment soared, exports were low, and almost every economic indicator went downhill during the 1970’s.
The Nixon, Ford and Carter administrations tried a numerous amount of things to resuscitate the economy but instead it brought more burdens because unintended problems. In 1972 the U.S. decided to sale the Soviet Union millions of wheat in effort to reduce the trade deficit. This caused many problems in the year 1973. Te 1970’s proved to be a decade of tumultuous change for the automobile industry in the U.S. This caught first in the economic turn oil, price control, and then in the energy crises of 1973-74 and 1979.
Stagflation was an economic recession basically. People began to loose their jobs and things on the market began to get higher every second. Nothing was considered a reasonable price. People began to beg for their Social Security to come because they began to believe there was nothing left that they could afford. The inflation helped workers and retirees.
The government needs for funds began to get bigger and bigger and led greater government borrowing. This pushed interest’s rates and increased costs for businesses. From this going on unemployment rose to very uncomfortable levels. They had to find a way to fix this big problem.
In 1977 president Jimmy Carter tried to help out our economy crises. He tried to combat economic increasing government spending. He also established voluntary wage and price guidelines. These two plans did not work properly at all. They failed tremendously.
In the 1970’s we saw the software contract programming industry growing rapidly. They were so good that they soon became known as the “Professional Services”. They were given this name because a known fact was given that they provided a board range of consulting and designing services. They also would even program it for you if needed. This software product was established as a viable source of software for people who often use computers.
In the beginning of the 1970’s people believed the Software from Vendor would meet all of there needs. They didn’t think it would be a problem with this company at all. By time the 80’s came this Software was to most popular out there. In 71 ICP had there first annual million dollar award program. The program recognized Software products that made over a million dollars in revenue.
During this time their were only twenty nine software products that actually made the list. By time 1976 came this program grown to 100 products that made the list. This was just from 64 software companies imagine if it was more companies. Only four of these companies passed $20 million dollars. A company name Cincom’s Total database management system received an award for $50 million dollars.

The first invention of the PC was made in the mid-1970. A little after these PC’s was created they led to the founding of first PC software firms. They made software’s like Microsoft, Software Arts, etc. Creating these made the VisiCalc spreadsheet program. Besides the success the software industry was making many realized this was a major investment opportunity

Friday, April 3, 2009

Having Fun – Family Time

Having Fun – Family Time
When they weren't working, families found time to have fun, with neighbors, friends, relatives and each other. With little money to spend on entertainment, families enjoyed new board games such as "Monopoly" and "Scrabble" which were first sold during the 1930s. Neighbors got together to play card games such as whist, pinochle, canasta and bridge.
Elroy Hoffman says his family didn't have a radio, so they played cards or dominos. "My Dad and I always played race horse rummy."
Also, they played records on a phonograph. Baseball was popular – to play and to watch (in person, not on television). Some families had fun putting together puzzles with hundreds of pieces. They put the puzzle pieces on a table in the parlor and different members of the family worked on the puzzle when they had time after chores or on Sunday afternoons. Sometimes it took several weeks to assemble a hard puzzle with lots of pieces.
The Apetz brothers used objects from around the farm to make their own toys. For example, they made bows from tree branches and arrows out of roof shingles. Delbert says they used the hub of a wagon wheel to make a rolling toy. When Delbert and his wife had children, they got together with friends whose children were the same age. They played hide-and-go-seek or drop the handkerchief with the children. He says, "You didn't have no money to go no place. You didn't have no money to go down and buy the kids an ice cream cone or anything like that so you just stayed home."
Louise Dougherty says her favorite form of entertainment was reading, especially when her father, a lawyer and judge, read aloud to her.
Even though farm life was difficult in the 1930s, children growing up in that era found ways to have fun just doing "kid things." Ruth Nettleton enjoyed ice skating and roller skating, and loved riding in the back of the hay wagon. Harvey Pickerel remembers racing the neighbor boys on horseback on their way to school. As a teacher, Merna rode her horse to school, too, but she loved seeing the birds along the road to school.

Movements of the Progressive Era

Movements of the Progressive Era

While historians may debate the exact boundaries of the Progressive Era, it seems clear that the stream of �New� ideas, innovations, and movements flowing through institutional and cultural landscapes around the turn of the last century reshaped the waterways of culture and society.
In the most general terms, the Progressive Era was characterized by attempts to embrace, accommodate, reach a new balance with, or fight against life in an increasingly urban, industrial, routinized, and multi ethnic environment. The vehicles for these attempts ranged from remaking the self via various physical culture movements to conserving or �reopening� the �frontier� via conservation movements and imperialist expansion, from engineering humanity through eugenics to engineering �human flight� through the airplane, from organizing labor and increasing business regulation to remaking the political process, to name but a few. The dramas of these competing approaches and goals often took place on the broadest of public stages�presidential elections and world�s fairs and expositions.
The sites reviewed below, and listed in the additional links of interest, give one a taste of the complexity of history and historical change. No one site or topic can be said to encompass every aspect of the era or to provide its definitive definition. But, the array of topics as a whole functions as a system, pointing towards-- though not entirely capturing-- the dynamics of the period.

Women's Rights Movement

The Women's Rights Movement was a significant crusade for women that began in the late nineteenth century and flourished throughout Europe and the United States for the rest of the twentieth century. Advocates for women's rights initiated this movement as they yearned for equality and equal participation and representation in society. Throughout all of history, the jobs of women ranged from housewives to factory workers, yet oppression by society, particularly men, accompanied them in their everyday lives. Not until the end of the nineteenth century did women begin to voice their frustrations about the inequalities among men and women, and these new proclamations would be the basis for a society with opportunities starting to open for women. The supporters of women's rights strived for voting rights, equal pay in jobs, no job discrimination, and other privileges that would put them on the same level as men in both society and in the workplace. Starting with the Seneca Falls Declaration in 1848 and continuing through the twentieth century with documents like the United Nations Declaration of Women's Rights, women became significant leaders that aided in the advancement of twentieth century life and society.

The first well-known quest for women's rights began in Seneca Falls, New York, on July19, 1848. Elizabeth Cady Stanton organized a women's conference in hopes of discussing the role of women in society and establishing a sense of what women would need to do to overcome the barriers they had faced for several centuries. Stanton and another supporter, Lucretia Mott, developed the Seneca Falls Declaration as a document that would highlight the discrimination that women had endured for hundreds of years. They hoped that this would attract the attention of both men and women by detailing how women had been discriminated for years and how this was going to change. The declaration states that men have had "absolute tyranny" over women throughout all of history, and it is this idea that has prevented the progression of women's abilities an talents.1 The declaration continues to say that women have been robbed of their inalienable rights, rights to hold property, representation in government, an education, job opportunities, and many other rights that have only been applicable to men in the past.2 The ideas and concepts suggested in the Seneca Falls Declaration evoked strong feelings of equality among women, and it also sparked anger amongst men.
As women began to approach the idea of women's rights for the first time, many men revealed their strong opposition to equality based on the feeling that women were inferior to men. One such opposer to women's rights, Francis Parkman, believed that women should not have the same voting rights as men. He believed this simply because "the physical and mental constitution of women is more delicate than in the other sex," therefore suggesting that they are not able to handle the "harsh conflicts" of the political world.3 Similarly, George Romanes justified that men are far more superior to women. He stated that the "brain-weight of women is about five ounces less than that of men," and he believed that women were not intellectually capable to take on roles or jobs that only men had been accustomed to in the past. This continuing crisis of equality among men and women spread into the twentieth century, as both men and women were pulling for their side of the issue throughout the United States and Europe.
During the beginning of the twentieth century, the progression of women's rights was gradual, but women soon gained recognition politically in Soviet Russia, Germany, Hungary, Great Britain, United States, and several other countries.4 However, the equality of women was still an intense issue, as women wanted to achieve equality not only through women's suffrage, but also through gaining recognition as an individual with the same rights and privileges as anyone in society. The Women's Rights Movement was again heightened after World War II, primarily because women went back to their customary role as housewives staying at home to take care of their children. More movements and documents for women's rights started to surface as women did not want to yield to the past oppression of men. In 1963, Betty Friedman, a promoter of woman's rights, wrote The Feminine Mystique, which illustrated a goal for women to strive for, specifically the goal of pursuing a career outside of the home. Friedan expressed these ideas when she exclaimed, " I want something more than my husband and my children and my home."5 Also, after World War II, Western European women began to advocate their rights in society, and the United Nations Declaration of Women's Rights was passed in 1967. This declaration proved to be a critical advancement in Western Europe as it finally established the status of women in society. This document established that women have the right to vote and hold public office, give full consent to marriage, hold jobs and get the same pay as men, get time off for marriage and maternity, and do many other things that had previously been prohibited.6 With this document, several other movements, petitions, and actions followed as women began to move away from their home life and venture out to find new opportunities.
As the late twentieth century approached, more and more women began to become key figures in society. A large percentage of married women had obtained jobs away from their homes, and with this came lower birthrates. The roles of women were no longer specifically concentrated in the home, but now a family was organized and economically run by both parents.7 In 1990, Joan Konner, dean of Columbia University's School of Journalism, elaborated on the idea that although women are continuing to take on greater roles in the marketplace, they are still carrying out the feeling of family. She believes that "women define themselves in terms of relationship and responsibility" and they use these ideals to manage their family life and their job.8 With many rights finally es tablished for women, the later part of the twentieth century included a time when women displayed their talents and abilities to achieve their goals and ambitions.
The progression of women's rights and the Women's Rights Movement has lasted for over a century and will probably continue to develop into the future. As women have fought to have the same rights that men had naturally been granted, society and the role of women as individuals was drastically altered. From composing declarations and documents to gaining recognition in the workplace, women have become increasingly prominent in all cultures. Influential people such as Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Lucretia Mott have become some of the most significant individuals in history. Women, now able to participate in society socially, economically, and politically, have changed the entire world as we know it today.

Why We Don't Want Men to Vote

Because man's place is in the army.
Because no really manly man wants to settle any question otherwise than by fighting about it.
Because if men should adopt peaceable methods women will no longer look up to them.
Because men will lose their charm if they step out of their natural sphere and interest themselves in other matters than feats of arms, uniforms, and drums.
Because men are too emotional to vote. Their conduct at baseball games and political conventions shows this, while their innate tendency to appeal to force renders them unfit for government.
During World War I, when women took up jobs in factories to support the war, as well as taking more active roles in the war than in previous wars. After the war, even the more restrained National American Woman Suffrage Association, headed by Carrie Chapman Catt, took many opportunities to remind the President, and the Congress, that women's war work should be rewarded with recognition of their political equality. Wilson responded by beginning to support woman suffrage. In a speech on September 18, 1918, he said,
We have made partners of the women in this war. Shall we admit them only to a partnership of suffering and sacrifice and toil and not to a partnership

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Welcome To The 1920's

Welcome to the year of the 1920's It was a time of conservatism, it was a time of great social change. From the world of fashion to the world to politics, forces clashed to produce the most explosive decade of the century.
In music, the three sounds were and jazz. The Jazz Age came about with artist like Bessie Smith and Duke Ellington. Youth ruled everything. From the young styles of dress to the latest celebrities. If it was young, it was the thing.
It was the age of prohibition, it was the age of prosperity, and it was the age of downfall. It was the age of everything.

1920's Social Movement

The Birth Control Movement

Women from all economic classes gained greater ability to limit pregnancy in the 1920s as a result of the effort of nurse and birth control advocate Margaret Sänger, who vowed to "do something to change the destiny of mothers whose miseries were as vast as the sky." By 1914 Sanger was determined to remove the stigma of obscenity from contraception and to set up a nationwide network of advice centers on birth control for women. She first had to find a safe, reliable method of birth control and, in 1915, traveled to Europe, where she learned about the diaphragm. By the 1920s Sänger broke her ties with radical colleagues, a shift in approach that won her the support of powerful, conservative groups such as physicians, philanthropists, and wealthy women.

Unionism and Adjunct Faculty Organizing in Boston

For the past three years, activists in Boston have been challenging the corporatization of higher education by developing innovative and successful approaches to organizing the most exploited layer of its teaching workforce, the thousands of contingent, or adjunct, faculty members who work in the greater urban area. The Boston Project of the Coalition of Contingent Academic Labor has developed a multi-campus approach to organizing, an openness to solidarity with other campus workers, and a willingness to go beyond collective bargaining issues to address broad questions of equity and democratic power. Like living wage campaigns and anti-sweatshop struggles, the Boston Project is an example of a new labor-based social movement emerging on America’s campuses.
This development seems paradoxical, since “new social movement” theory arose in the 1970s and ‘80s with an emphatic rejection of the primacy of labor struggles. In the view of such theorists as Alain Touraine, Chantal Mouffe, and Carl Boggs, the youth, women, gays, oppressed nationalities, and so forth who went into motion beginning in the 1960s constitute unique social subjects whose transformative activity cannot be understood from the perspective of class struggle. These groups fight, not so much over the distribution of the material surplus, as over the symbolic systems and informal power relationships in which “forms of life” are embedded. They address the needs of their participants for social and cultural meaning, an orientation perhaps best expressed by the motto of the women’s movement that “the personal is the political.” Moreover, according to theorists, just as these new social subjects move largely outside the terrain of economic battle, so do they reject the traditional organizational forms of the labor movement. Unlike unions and left-wing political parties, movement organizations are self-consciously fluid and transient, coalescing when needed and dissolving when the need is past. Movements, in short, are not reducible to organizations, and movement demands go far beyond bread and butter issues.
How ironic that the distinction between labor and new social movements is now breaking down precisely in the arena where it was first theorized, namely, the academy. This is undoubtedly due to a transformation in the class character of higher education.
First of all, the college and university experience is no longer reserved for an elite, but has become a mass phenomenon. In the United States, more than 60% of the population between the ages of 18 and 22 is enrolled in institutions of higher learning, the highest percentage of any country in he world. In addition, many people are coming to college later in life for the purpose of job retraining or simple enrichment. Nearly 75% of all students are educated in comparatively low cost public institutions, including a large number of community colleges. The overwhelming majority of undergraduates work in low paid, contingent jobs while attending classes. Many face prospects that are only marginally better after graduation. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, 25% of holders of bachelor degrees work in jobs that require only a high school education. Secondly, just as the class character of the student body has changed, so has that of the faculty. Nearly 50% of college and university teachers work “part-time,” i.e. for low pay and without benefits or job security no matter how many hours they put in, while another 18% hold temporary, non-tenure track appointments. The degradation of academic labor is an expression of the general rise of contingent work, itself the result of corporate attempts to cut labor costs and undermine workers’ power. No wonder that the home of a paradigmatic new social movement, the student rebellion of the 1960’s, has become the site of labor struggles.
These struggles, however, have been deeply influenced by the organizational fluidity and desire to contest issues of culture and power that characterized earlier campus-based social movements. The anti-sweatshop efforts to force university stores to cease stocking items produced by sweatshop labor are marked by the informal, grassroots organizational style and appeal to justice and community that marked previous student movements, as are living wage campaigns to set decent standards of minimum compensation for the lowest paid campus employees. The Boston Project of the Coalition of Contingent Academic Labor applies a similar social movement orientation to the task of organizing adjunct faculty.
Nowhere is the importance of contingent academic labor more evident than in the Greater Boston Area. With fifty-eight institutions of higher learning within a ten mile radius of the urban center, Boston has the highest concentration of colleges and universities (in proportion to population) of any city in the world. Each year, graduate programs award thousands of master and doctoral degrees to aspiring professionals. Many of the new degree holders remain in the Boston area, in large measure because of the city’s stimulating cultural and intellectual environment. Of those who choose the academic profession, few manage to secure full-time employment, forming instead a labor pool from which most of the city’s 10,000 or so part-time faculty members are drawn.
The colleges and universities of the Greater Boston Area are partially subsidized by the cheap credit hours produced by this most exploited stratum of the adjunct faculty. The tuition generated by a handful of students - two or three students in courses taught at private institutions, more in public ones - pays the wages for a part-time instructor. The employing institution appropriates the rest of the money brought in by the course as an unpaid premium, as academic surplus value.
The economic function of the contingent faculty extends beyond its role in generating surplus tuition, thereby subsidizing the institutions that employ it. It also plays an important part in the extensive networks that link higher education with private companies and public agencies. The university industry is not only one of Boston’s biggest employers. It is connected with the city’s other major industries - such as hospitals, financial services, high tech, and state and local government - in a dense web of funding, training programs, research projects, policy institutes, and revolving personnel. The contingent faculty supplies the primary cadres for a crucial node in this web, the continuing education programs that retrain workers and managers. Moreover, in regular day programs, especially at state institutions, it educates Boston’s future teachers, nurses, social workers, computer specialists, accountants, and so on. Finally, in the natural sciences, contingent faculty members conduct research, increasingly funded and utilized by private companies. In this fashion, the contingent faculty acts as a crucial productive force in Boston’s larger political economy.
Because of its strategic location in the corporate-state-university complex, a dynamic effort by Boston’s adjunct faculty to organize would send ripples throughout the city, affecting students, parents, politicians, public workers, and private corporations. Such a movement would demonstrate how the public’s interest in education is damaged by the imperative to maximize profits, with its penchant for leasing educational assets to narrow private interests, while driving "instructional costs" to the floor. It would be poised to make a natural alliance with tens of thousands of students, most of whom are already temporary or part-time workers, and many of whom face the continued prospect, after graduation, of insecure, underpaid work without benefits. It might even develop imaginative new forms of community and solidarity as antidotes to the culture of careerist self-absorption and competitive isolation normally on offer in our halls of higher learning. To accomplish such tasks, however, the contingent faculty would have to achieve a high level of self-organization. Yet it is notoriously difficult for contingent workers to organize, and the adjunct faculty is no exception to this general rule.
In most cases, labor solidarity and militancy are nourished by the concrete face-to-face relations that bind workers together on the job. The Wobbly organizing campaigns of the 1910s and 1920s, the workplace occupations of the 1930s, as well as the P-9, Jay, Maine, and Pitstown strikes of more recent years were all conducted primarily by groups of workers who had learned to depend upon one another, on a daily basis, in the factories, the retail shops, and the mines. By contrast, contingent faculty members are atomized. With temporary jobs on a single campus or part-time positions on multiple ones, they have little chance of developing the workplace bonds that sustain concerted action. If collective bonds are to come into being, they must be forged, at least initially, not in the process of work, but in the course of struggle. In this regard, it is instructive to consider the campaign that gave birth to the Boston Project, the successful battle in 1997-98 of part-time faculty members at UMass Boston for full medical and pension benefits and pro-rated pay.
As a state institution, UMass Boston shares in the generally high level of union organization that characterizes public colleges and universities in the Northeast. The Faculty Staff Union, an affiliate of the National Education Association, won recognition in 1976 as the collective bargaining agent of the UMass faculty. Though union organizers argued for the inclusion of all part-time faculty members in the bargaining unit, an administrative threat to tie recognition up in the courts forced them to accept a hurdle to part-timer membership that has had a decisive impact on the character of the union. To be admitted into the union, part-timers must teach a total of five bargaining unit courses in the span of three consecutive semesters. In 1997, 115 people had done so, 109 part-timers taught in the so-called “regular university,” but without carrying enough courses for bargaining unit membership, while another 116 taught only in the Continuing Education Division, which was not unionized at all. Had all part-timers been represented by the union, they would have comprised 340 members, roughly forty percent of the entire bargaining unit. But, since only a third of this number enjoyed union membership, part-timers were vastly outnumbered by their full-time colleagues. As a result of this imbalance, the FSU had given priority over the course of its history to defending the interests of the full-time faculty, the vast majority of its membership.
The union did, however, provide a context in which part-time faculty members could organize to assert their interests. During contract negotiations in 1986, part-timers from several departments formed a Part-Time Faculty Committee that functioned as a caucus within the FSU. The Committee mounted a campaign on behalf of a set of demands, above all a substantial wage increase, that succeeded in winning the support of students, staff, and a good number of full-time faculty members. Just as importantly, Committee activists were sophisticated enough to keep strategic pressure on union negotiators, making it difficult for them to abandon part-timers at the negotiating table. Although there was no part-time faculty member on the negotiating team, the Part-Time Faculty Committee sent an observer to each of the negotiating sessions. Moreover, at a crucial moment, the Committee picketed a negotiating session, angering union negotiators, but also forcing them onto the picket line. But means of such savvy tactics, the Committee succeeded in winning an increase in base pay for part-time faculty union members from $2000 to $3000 per course.
Though the Committee continued to meet for a couple of years following the 1986 victory, external factors soon made it impossible to build on that achievement. A serious crisis in the state budget resulted in a reduction in force that ended by driving one third of the part-time faculty out of UMB. Desperation to hang onto jobs replaced the elan of the `86 campaign. Yet the Part-Time Faculty Committee had demonstrated that it is possible for atomized adjuncts to build the collective bonds necessary to improve their conditions. This was a seed that would lie dormant for awhile, but that would one day bear fruit.
By 1997, the fiscal crisis had not only ended, but the state had accumulated a one billion dollar budgetary surplus. Though much of the surplus was rebated to taxpayers, and little of what remained was used to satisfy social needs, the state’s appropriation to UMass ceased to shrink, and that made it feasible to make new part-timer demands.
In the fall semester, activists mostly from the Philosophy, English, and Math Departments, reconstituted the Part-Time Faculty Committee. Early on, the Committee determined the key element in its strategy. It would work to get the FSU to invert its traditional priorities by making part-time faculty issues the focus of contractual bargaining. It held several large meetings at which perhaps half the entire unionized part-time faculty chose a negotiating agenda. The agenda was intended to make an appeal to the university community so morally persuasive that the union leadership would be unable to ignore it.
Massachusetts law mandates full medical and retirement benefits for any state employee who works at least half-time. At UMass Boston, most unionized part-timers teach two courses per semester to the full-time faculty’s three, yet each was classified by the University as two-fifths of a full-time worker. The point of the classification, of course, was to prevent part-timers from obtaining benefits under the law. In a number of cases, this exclusion had serious consequences. Some part-timers were unable to get medical treatment for chronic health problems while others had to depend on welfare programs for assistance. In justifying part-timer exclusion from the provisions of the law, the University Administration and the FSU Executive Committee were in initial agreement. In their view, part-timers had been hired to perform only one of the three functions of full-time faculty members, that is, to teach, but not to engage in research or service. Yet nearly all part-timers kept current in their fields, while a good number published articles and books or presented at conferences. All met with students outside of class during regular office hours as well as on an informal basis, and several worked on committees. In a survey conducted by the Part-Time Faculty Committee, the vast majority of respondents indicated that they spent more than twenty hours per week on their UMB jobs. Still, there was opposition on the FSU Executive Committee to recognizing that part-timers were already working half-time or better. Wouldn’t such recognition threaten the traditional claims of full-timers to be engaged in additional and more prestigious sorts of work? In order to circumvent opposition, the Part-Time Faculty Committee appealed directly to the full-time faculty with a petition asserting that part-timers deserved benefits because of the amount of work they performed. The overwhelming number of full-timers asked to sign the petition did so, but without awareness of the reservations of influential members of the FSU Executive Committee. In the one department where an FSU officer made his objections known, not a single full-timer signed. Nonetheless, the petition had a crucial political effect. Published in the campus newspaper with 170 signatures, it demonstrated the ability of the Part-Time Faculty Committee to mobilize the union’s own full-timer base. As a result, the Executive Committee was pressured to endorse the part-timers’ negotiating agenda.
It took months to solidify union support through meetings, flyers, posters, buttons, a student petition that garnered 2000 signatures, and a picket by more than 200 part-timers and supporters. The result, however, was extraordinary. Negotiations concluded in June `98 with reclassification of union part-timers teaching two courses per semester as salaried, half-time employees with full medical, dental, and retirement benefits, a pro-rated floor of $4,000 per course, a sixteen percent salary increase over the three-year life of the contract, and an additional cumulative $200 wage increase every semester.
In the wake of this victory, the FSU worked to bring the part-time faculty closer to the fully enfranchised center of the union. The Executive Committee arranged for a course reduction for first one and then two of the members of the Part-Time Faculty Committee to facilitate continued organizing, supported an initiative to promote part-timers to full-time term contracts, and, after some tension, endorsed a successful attempt by part-timers in 2000 - 2001 to unionize UMB’s Continuing Education Division as an autonomous chapter of the FSU. The union has also changed its culture more subtly, according part-timer issues an important place at Executive Committee meetings, in the FSU’s membership bulletin, and in its communications with outside groups. Finally, at the end of 2001, the Executive Committee selected a part-timer to serve as the union’s vice-president when the seat was vacated in mid-term.
The contract victory at UMass Boston inspired the current attempt to organize adjunct faculty on a city-wide basis. In April 1999, UMB activists hosted the Third Annual Congress of the Coalition of Contingent Academic Labor (COCAL), a loose national network of contingent faculty activists with centers of strength in New York City, Chicago, and the San Franciso Bay Area. One of the Congress workshops, a meeting on regional organizing, founded the Boston Project, subsequently chartered as a chapter of COCAL.
Fifty-five of the fifty-eight institutions of higher learning in the Greater Boston Area are private, and so involve obstacles to organizing that the UMass Boston activists never had to face. When Boston COCAL was formed in 1999, at all but two of the private institutions, part-time faculty members lack union representation. This was a legacy of the Supreme Court’s 1980 decision in Yeshiva University vs the National Labor Relations Board. Yeshiva University had appealed an earlier decision by the NLRB granting union representation to its full-time faculty. The University argued that its full-time faculty members were not covered by the National Labor Relations Act because they exercised managerial authority by helping determine curriculum, hiring and evaluating new faculty members, and implementing administrative decisions. In a five-to-four ruling, the Court agreed with the University’s position. The result of the Yeshiva Decision was the widespread decertification of faculty unions on private campuses throughout the United States. Yeshiva clearly does not apply to part-time faculty members. By no conceivable stretch of the imagination do they exercise managerial authority. However, by de-unionizing the vast majority of private campuses, Yeshiva has taken from part-timers the larger faculty unions in which they might organize caucuses, and so develop the collective bonds necessary to assert their interests.
In part, COCAL's Boston Organizing Project is an attempt to get beyond the quandary created by Yeshiva. Through city-wide meetings, pickets and other demonstrations, local organizing committees, and a regular newsletter, COCAL activists hoped to create the sense of community and solidarity that is an indispensable precondition for combating adjunct exploitation. In three city-wide meetings during the year following the creation of Boston COCAL, fifty activists from twenty campuses drafted a common program for adjuncts that managed to be both radical and commonsensical. At its core are demands for equal pay for equal work, full medical and pension benefits, job security and free speech rights, participation in governance, promotion to full-time positions, and narrowing of salary disparities within the entire higher education faculty. Activists made this program the theme of an ambitious public educational campaign, discussing it at campus meetings of adjunct faculty members, bringing it to students through dramatic pickets at Northeastern University, Emerson College, and Mass Bay Community College, and promoting it by means of radio and newspaper interviews.
In addition to this city-wide educational effort, activists established grass roots organizations at a number of institutions. Depending on local conditions, some function as informal advocacy groups, others as union organizing committees. As an example of the former, adjuncts at Suffolk University worked successfully with their Faculty Senate to pressure administrators into granting an 8% increase in part-timers base pay. As a dramatic and path-breaking example of the latter, Boston COCAL helped launch a campaign to unionize the part-time faculty at Emerson college, the first successful union drive at a private campus in Massachusetts since the 1980 Yeshiva Decision.
Why Emerson out of the 54 private sector institutions in Boston whose adjuncts were not unionized? From its beginning, Boston COCAL included activists from a variety of unions and professional organizations, but it had an especially close relationship with the American Association of University Professors. At that time all three national faculty labor federations - the AAUP, the National Education Association, and the American Federation of Teachers - had given verbal recognition to the importance of the adjunct faculty's explosive growth, but the AAUP was the only one to go beyond lip service by hiring a national field representative to focus on the issue. Part of that focus consisted in strategic and modest financial support to COCAL's Boston Project. In Spring 2000, the AAUP, with input from COCAL activists and a few faculty members at Emerson, decided that there were several compelling reasons for targeting that institution in a first effort at unionizing part-time faculty in Boston's private sector. First of all, the full-time faculty at Emerson was already represented by an AAUP-affiliated union which had existed prior to the Yeshiva Decision, and which the college administration had agreed to grandparent in. Secondly, the college was heavily dependent on part-timers who comprised more than two-thirds of its total faculty. Finally, there was a strong base of student support. Because so many of their favorite teachers were part-timers, students were aware that their teachers 'contingency curtailed their availability, and so had a direct impact on the everyday learning environment. For this reason, they had a direct stake in supporting improved pay and working conditions for their part-time faculty.
The general difficulties involved in organizing part-time faculty - the fact they are scattered, they are only at the workplace a limited number of hours per week, they don’t know each other, and, so on - are exacerbated by the incredibly precarious situation of part-timers at non-unionized private colleges. Since they are hired on a per course, semester-by-semester basis, lacking union protection, they can fail to be rehired them at any time without explanation. Because of their vulnerability, the first priority in beginning a union drive at Emerson was to protect the anonymity of part-time faculty activists. In its early stages, the drive was largely covert: the AAUP hired a co-chair of Boston COCAL, who did not teach at Emerson, to serve as organizer of the drive; Emerson part-timers were asked only to talk quietly to their colleagues about unionization but not to expose themselves publicly; all contact with part-time faculty members occurred off-campus; and when flyers needed to be distributed or other visible work needed to be done on campus, members of COCAL not teaching at Emerson performed the required tasks.
In August of 2000, the drive began in earnest. The AAUP's paid organizer pulled together a committee of ten Emerson part-timers who made strategic decisions about the direction of the drive and began talking to their colleagues about the benefits of unionization. In October, the committee launched a card signing campaign to call for a union election. The biggest initial difficulty was figuring out who actually taught part-time at Emerson. Activists were able to acquire part-time faculty mailing lists from many of the divisions of Emerson, but since the lists had been compiled the previous spring, they were only about 75% accurate. That is to say, the attrition rate between spring and fall had been about 25% of the part-time faculty, or approximately 50 of the almost 200 people listed as teaching in the spring. In addition, home addresses were not available for many of the part-timers, which also made it difficult to obtain correct phone numbers for many of them. Eventually, members of the organizing committee were able to obtain fall faculty lists, but the lists were incomplete. The organizing committee was unable to obtain the missing addresses until the National Labor Relations Board hearing at the end of February. At that point, the Emerson administration was required by law to provide an “Excelsior List” of the names and addresses of all those it considered eligible for bargaining unit membership within a week, but that left less than a month before the election to contact all those not yet reached.
Despite these logistical difficulties, signed cards began to trickle in, and, as more and more part-timers at Emerson began speaking to their colleagues, more cards were returned. By January, the organizing committee needed only a few more cards to exceed the 30% of potential bargaining unit members necessary to file for an election, and through intensified face-to-face contact, especially on the part of the paid organizer, slightly more than the requisite number of cards were signed by the end of the month. The cards were duly filed with the National Labor Relations Board; negotiations proceeded with the Emerson administration as to how the bargaining unit should be constituted; and an NLRB hearing was held the end of February, though virtually all differences between the administration and the organizers had been worked out before the hearing was actually held.
One of the key reasons there was not much to argue about at the NLRB hearing was that the Emerson Administration had come up with an extremely lenient definition of who would be eligible to vote in the union election. They proposed that anyone in either the day school or the Continuing Education Division who had taught a three-credit course in the Fall 2000 and/or Spring 2001 semester be eligible to vote. The initial card signing drive had involved only the day school. Thus the administration in effect gave the potential union an additional fifty members (Continuing Education faculty) which increased the size of bargaining unit by 25%. The downside was that though some of those who taught in Continuing Ed also taught in the day school, and thus knew about the union drive, most had no idea anything was brewing. The administration seemed to have been counting on the notion that a majority of CE faculty would not support a union drive because they were “true” adjuncts—hired to fill a particular teaching niche in their specialty, but gainfully employed full-time elsewhere—and therefore not in particular need of a higher salary or benefits. But this turned out to be a miscalculation on the administration’s part, as many CE faculty were in fact graduate students at other colleges or in the day school at Emerson and quite interested in unionization. Although those with full-time jobs did not necessarily support the union drive, many saw no reason to vote against the union and deprive their colleagues of a living wage and benefits.
The NLRB hearing in February determined that the vote would be by secret ballot, mailed on March 30, returned to the NLRB by April 13, and counted on April 16. Again, it was unusual that the administration had argue for that method of election. Typically it is the workers who prefer a secret mail ballot to protect their privacy, while management prefers on-site elections which can be monitored, where it is able to exercise subtle intimidation of voters. However the administration seems to have felt that people would be more comfortable voting “no” in the privacy of their own homes, a huge miscalculation. Though the administration waged an intensive paper campaign against the union, its arguments were so specious and condescending that they alienated many more fence-sitters than they convinced. Following an equally intense telephone effort on the part of Emerson part-timers, the AAUP, and some COCAL activists in support of unionization, the result was a landslide: 117 to 37 in favor of unionizing.
The Emerson drive constituted a paradox from the standpoint of conventional organizing strategy. Unions normally will not file for an election until 70% or 80% of potential bargaining unit members have signed cards. The reason for this is the expectation that a number of union voters will change their minds after management launches its anti-union election campaign. However, the Emerson organizing committee filed with around 40%, and yet won the election by a 3 to 1 margin. This points to the necessity to rethink strategy when organizing contingent workers. The great problem the Emerson activists faced was getting cards signed. They had to track down their colleagues, most of whom they had never met because, as contingent workers, they lacked the workplace bonds normally enjoyed by conventional workers. Once the 30% hurdle had been exceeded by only a 10% margin,, the organizing committee did not hesitate to file for an election because it correctly expected even the adjuncts it had failed to reach to vote against their undeniable exploitation.
Following the union victory, the Emerson administration contested the election results by arguing to the regional NLRB that the AAUP could not legitimately represent both part- and full-time faculty members at the same college as that would represent a conflict of interest, since full-timers exercise supervisory power over part-timers. The AAUP argued that it did not represent either group of faculty; rather, each of its affiliates represented itself. The regional board found in favor of the AAUP and the part-timer union. The administration then took their case to the national NLRB which also found against them. After a five-month silence on the part of the administration during which it was considering further legal action, the administration decided to abide by the election results. After meeting with their AAUP counterparts, Emerson’s lawyers advised the president of the College to negotiate, and on November 1, 2001 the president sent a letter stating the administration's intention to “bargain in good faith.” Negotiations began on February 4, 2002. At the time of this writing, they are still in progress.
The victory at Emerson is a crucial one for the future of part-time faculty unionizing efforts in the private sector both in the Boston area and beyond. It demonstrates the ability of adjunct faculty members to unionize successfully provided they are willing to exercise their imagination as well as their courage.
Boston COCAL has acquired a reputation, not only for innovative organizing tactics, but also for a desire to cross sectoral lines in making alliances with other campus workers. Along with the AAUP, Jobs With Justice, and Campaign on Contingent Work, COCAL has initiated an organizing project that brings campus unions representing janitors, clerical workers, technical employees, food service workers, and faculty together with students and other activists in a broad-based solidarity network. In addition to sponsoring two conferences on the academic labor movement, those participating in the network have adopted a Campus Workers’ Bill of Rights that demands decent working conditions, a living wage, and benefits, but also universalizes privileges enjoyed historically by only tenured faculty. The document, which is meant to guide negotiations as well as more informal grassroots campaigns, affirms the right of all workers to participate democratically in shaping the work process as well as to be protected from dismissal without just cause or due process. In this way, tenure and governance rights would be extended, not only to part-time faculty, but to everyone who works in academia, certainly an extension of labor demands beyond bread and butter needs.
Two months after the Emerson vote, COCAL activists succeeded in unionizing UMass Boston's Continuing Education Division as an autonomous chapter of the existing Faculty Staff Union, a chapter controlled by the adjunct faculty members who constitute the overwhelming majority of the CE bargaining unit. The activists used the UMass Boston drive as a springboard for creating an adjunct faculty caucus within the FSU's statewide parent union, the powerful Massachusetts Teachers Association, itself an affiliate of the NEA. The initial caucus meeting, which took place at the MTA's annual Delegate Assembly, drew roughly 40 participants from ten or so campuses who adopted a reform agenda intended to pressure the MTA's Higher Education Division into using its considerable resources on behalf of adjunct faculty interests. The central plank in that agenda was a demand that the MTA's largest higher ed affiliate, the 15-campus Massachusetts Community Council (MCCC), give each of its adjunct faculty members a full vote in the election of union officers. Of the 5700 faculty members who teach in the Massachusetts community college system, 1700 are full-timers and 4000 part-timers. Though part-timers constitute the vast majority of the MCCC's membership, they are kept a minority voting block within the union through bylaws that give each part-timer 1/4 of the vote of a full-time faculty member. Such a fractional vote is unjustified even on the spurious grounds of proportionality since a good number of community college "part-timers" actually carry heavier course loads than full-timers by teaching on multiple community college campuses. At the MTA's Delegate Assembly, the Adjunct Faculty Caucus planned a petition drive to be conducted among union members on the community college campuses, and designed to pressure the MCCC to amend its bylaws by giving all of its members an equal vote. Not only would this rectify an evident injustice, but it would also make the community college part-time faculty a formidable force in the MTA's biggest higher ed union, thereby increasing their weight in the parent organization as well.
It is not surprising that the petition drive, which is currently underway, has elicited a hostile reaction from the MTA's higher ed staff as well as from much of the MCCC's elected leadership. The drive threatens to overturn the status quo within the MTA and its largest higher ed affiliate by shifting a significant amount of power to the part-time faculty. It is also not surprising that the MTA and MCCC elites regard Boston COCAL as an intruder, even though its original core activists are members of an MTA affiliated union (the Faculty Staff Union at UMass Boston). In a revealing slip of the tongue, MCCC leaders have labeled the COCAL members within the MTA Adjunct Faculty Caucus "carpetbaggers," since many of them do not teach in the community college system. Carpetbaggers," of course, was the name given by southern racists to northerners who came south in the aftermath of the Civil War to help dismantle the slave system.
Boston COCAL's battle is not only with college and university administrators and the private economic interests they serve, but also with the undemocratic union structures that replicate the second-class status that adjuncts suffer in the workplace. Only a revitalized academic labor movement would be capable of rolling back corporate control of every nook and cranny of the educational process. But innovative organizing tactics are not sufficient to create such a movement. Faculty unions must develop a culture that welcomes the participation of their most exploited members, especially since they and their non-unionized counterparts constitute the majority of those teaching on America’s college and university campuses. If COCAL’s Boston Project is successful, its most important contribution will lie, not in unionizing this or that institution, but in helping to create a new social movement in the academy, a radically democratic labor movement.

Women's Liberation Movement

The phrase women's liberation was first published in Simone de Beauvoir's influential 1949 essay, The Second Sex, but the roots of the women's liberation movement reach back much further. Ever since men have claimed dominance over women in patriarchal societies, there have been strong women who have fought for dignity and human rights. At various times in history, these women have banded together to form feminist social movements, such as those that arose at the end of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries and during the 1920s and 1940s.
These movements were often followed by backlash periods of increased suppression of women. Such a period of suppression occurred during the 1950s, which in turn inspired a new period of female rebellion that began in the 1960s. This latter rebellion constitutes the largest and most widely publicized social movement of women in history. It affected women of all races and classes around the world
Much of the civil unrest of the 1960s stemmed from social changes that occurred during the previous decades. Because every hand was needed for the war effort, during World War II (1939-1945) women and people of color were offered a wider range of opportunities and independence than previously. Once the war ended, however, those in power attempted to restore society to its original shape, with white men on top, Blacks on the bottom, and women in the kitchen.
The repression of the 1950s acted like a pressure cooker on rage and frustration. Unwilling to return submissively to second-class status, African Americans began to demand equal rights. The civil rights movement they started became an inspiration for other movements.
The pressure cooker of the 1950s was especially stifling for women. During the war, with many men in military service, women had been actively sought for employment at more interesting jobs for higher wages than they had ever known before. Once the war ended, they were unceremoniously fired and their jobs given to men returning from the war.
Societal pressure urged women to become dependent and "feminine," and to stay home to take care of husband and family. Many women worked for the same reasons they had always worked, to support themselves and their families. But society's image of the 1950s woman was the aproned housewife. Women who did have jobs outside the home were usually relegated to dead-end "pink collar" jobs and paid far less than men.
In addition, the 1950s brought the creation of the housing development and the nuclear family. Millions of houses were built in suburbs, and middle class families moved in. Rather than the sprawling extended families that had been common on farms and in urban tenements, the "typical" suburban family included husband, wife, and a couple of children.
Within suburban developments, families were often isolated, each in its own house surrounded by its own yard. Most isolated of all were the women. While husbands left for work and children for school, wives stayed home, planning and preparing meals and doing housework. Doctors prescribed tranquilizers, barbiturates, and even lobotomies to help women accept their stifling roles serenely.
Improved Conditions for Change
In the early 1960s, the invention and distribution of the first reliable oral contraceptive, the birth control pill, opened a door in many women's trapped lives by giving them the power to plan or avoid pregnancies. In addition, the civil rights movement forced the passage of new laws. In particular, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 forbade job discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. The addition of sex to the Civil Rights Act was almost an afterthought, but it proved to have significant consequences.
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission did little at first to enforce the part of Title VII that applied to women, however. But in 1966, at the Third Annual Conference on the Status of Women in Washington, D. C., a group of 28 women formed an organization to fight for women's rights. They called it the National Organization for Women (NOW). By the end of the year, NOW had 300 members; by the end of the century it would have half a million.
The Scope of the Movement
Through mainstream organizations such as NOW, women began to demand changes in discriminatory laws, but women's liberation encompassed far more than the quest for legal rights. Women began to seek freedom, respect, and the right to an individual identity and a fulfilled life. No longer satisfied to define themselves in terms of husbands and families, these women performed the most radical act of all: they began to talk to each other.
Using a technique called "consciousness raising," women began to meet and talk about their lives. In these "cr" groups, women found that problems they had thought were individual were, in fact, shared by many other women. They also began to think that these personal problems could be solved only by changing society. This idea gave rise to one of the most important slogans of the 1960s women's liberation movement, "The personal is political."

While men, from government officials to radical leftists, had trivialized women's issues, by talking together women began to construct a political analysis of a sexist society that encompassed the government, the educational system, the media, religion, the family, and even the language. Rape, abortion rights, and day care became issues just as important as equal pay for equal work.
The new feminists rejected the traditional role that had been imposed upon women of the 1950s. In one of the most famous actions of the women's liberation movement, in 1968, a hundred women gathered to protest the shallow values of the Miss America pageant. Into a trashcan, they threw symbols of the sexual objectification of women such as bras, girdles, and make-up. Though nothing was burned, the media seized on the event, and feminists were "bra-burners" ever after.
By the late 1960s, the women's liberation movement had expanded with energy and excitement. Women started women's centers, women's health clinics, rape crisis centers, and bookstores. They formed political groups that published feminist political writings, such as Redstockings' "Bitch Manifesto." Bread and Roses in Boston took over a building on the Harvard campus where they set up a day care center and taught classes for ten days before being forced out. They used money that they collected from supporters to open one of the longest running women's centers in the United States. In 1969, Cornell University in Ithaca, New York became the first college to offer accredited Women's Studies courses.
Diversity in the Movement
Although many defined the movement as white and middle class, working class women and women of color were some of the most important founders of women's liberation. Strong Black feminists such as Cellestine Ware, Florynce Kennedy, and Barbara Omolada were pivotal in the formation of feminist theory.
African American women's groups such as Mothers Alone Working, formed in 1965, and the Mount Vernon/New Rochelle Group, formed by Pat Robinson in 1960, may not have called themselves feminist, but they were models of women's liberation. Most radical feminist groups came to place on their agendas the struggle against racism and classism alongside the struggle against sexism, seeing them inextricably related.
Lesbians in the Movement
Each of these early feminist groups had lesbian members and lesbians among the leadership. After the Stonewall rebellion in the summer of 1969, most of these lesbians became unwilling to remain closeted. However, many straight feminists were
homophobic. They were reluctant to admit or accept the presence of out lesbians within the women's liberation movement.
Betty Friedan, the first president of NOW and author of the pivotal 1963 book, The Feminine Mystique, coined the phrase "lavender menace" to describe what she saw as the damaging effect of lesbians within the movement. Unable to resist the challenge, many radical lesbians, who were already working hard to fight sexism, had lavender t-shirts emblazoned with the words "lavender menace." They wore them en masse to the Second Congress of United Women in New York City in 1970 to demonstrate that lesbians were already a major part of the women's liberation movement.
Although homophobia continued to exist within the movement, as elsewhere, in 1971 NOW made support for lesbian and gay rights part of its policy, leading the way for other liberal feminist groups to do the same.
Success and Backlash
The women's liberation movement flourished into the late 1970s, gaining energy as it spread. All over the country, women published newspapers, such as Washington, D. C.'s off our backs and Denver's Big Mama Rag. Lesbian feminists published literary journals, such as Moonstorm in St. Louis and Amazon Quarterly in Berkeley. Because male-dominated publishing houses could not be counted on to publish women's work, feminists started their own publishing houses, including Spinsters, Ink, Kitchen Table Press, and the Feminist Press.
Women gathered in women's restaurants, coffeehouses, and bars. They listened to women's music, like that of Alix Dobkin and Meg Christian, and watched women's theater groups, such as At the Foot of the Mountain in Minneapolis. Feminists created a women's culture, which was closely intermingled with lesbian culture.
As frequently happens, however, there was a conservative backlash to the explosion of activity and energy of the women's movement. Anti-feminists had always trivialized the movement, calling feminists humorless and strident, but by the 1980s, conservatives began to treat women's liberation as a fait accompli. Women had once been discriminated against, laws had been changed, and now all was well, they said. Young women became reluctant to call themselves feminists and some began to call themselves "post feminist."
However, the women's liberation movement lives on, both in the work of older feminists who never stopped working to address the issues of sexism, and in the younger women who continue to be inspired by the courage and dedication of generations of women who fought for liberation, lesbians prominent among them.