Grace and I after 51 years of marriage, continue the emotionally draining process of re-discovering and then discarding, articles, magazines and books that we have saved over the years. A recent re-discovery; Volume 32, Number 1 of the 1972 MOTIVE, Lesbian/Feminist Issue. It is my hope that it is not inappropriate for me as a male to share this. The editors include these words; “Ending gay oppression will not automatically end woman oppression. Only a complete destruction of the whole male supremacist system can free women.” I have sought to acknowledge my male privilege and hope that my sharing these words from that issue of MOTIVE will represent another small step on my part, to “own up to” the imbalances that still exist between women and men.
“MOTIVE, a monthly magazine published by the United Methodist Church for over twenty years, is no more. This is its final issue. Throughout MOTIVE’s history, radical dissension within limits was tolerated with a few slaps on the wrist, but the church fathers really squirmed when the special issue on women appeared in March-April, 1969. In the aftermath of the controversy over the women’s issue, the church began to reduce its support of Motive and Motive decided it could no longer function under the church…the staff and editorial board decided to close up shop-using the remaining resources of the magazine to put out one final gay issue. The Furies, a collective of twelve lesbians in Washington, DC. which included a member of the old Motive editorial board, assumed responsibility for the lesbian issue. Within the collective, four of us took major responsibility for this project but everyone has contributed to it….We hope you will read the magazine, pass it on, talk about it with women you know and women you are getting to know, keep in touch with us and join the struggle.”
Joan E. Biren, Rita Mae Brown, Charlotte Bunch, Coletta Reid
(The issue was published by Sojourner Truth Publishing Collective, Atlanta, Georgia)
It may be that the greatest gift we who are old men and women who “Dream Dreams” (Joel),can offer this moment in history is to share history that many of us have forgotten and many, many others, have never known.
The Rev. Gilbert H. Caldwell is a retired United Methodist Minister who lives in Asbury Park, N.J. He was active in the Massachusetts unit of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) and participated in the civil-rights movement throughout the nation. In 2000, he, with others, organized the RMN Extension ministry United Methodists of Color for a Fully Inclusive Church (UMOC), an organization committed to the full inclusion of LGBT people in every aspect of church and society. His recent book, Something Within: Works by Rev. Gilbert H. Caldwell is available from Church Within A Church. Gil's advocacy efforts were also featured in the film "From Selma to Stonewall - Are We There Yet?" Learn more at truthinprogress.com
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