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Critics' Opinion 'Smoke Screen'

August 01, 1985

Would the Eagle Forum and other conservative groups get involved in college curricula if courses in men's studies were offered? Probably not; after all, since the beginning of time, learned topics were primarily written and taught for men, by men. And most of them still are.

In The Times article (Southeast / Long Beach sections, July 25) the conservatives' opinion that the Women's Studies Program at Cal State Long Beach is to "train and recruit feminists and lesbians" is a smoke screen to blur the fact that the status quo on most campuses is patriarchal in nature, even to the point of following a doctrine of male supremacy in many instances.

Undoubtedly, it must be difficult for conservative men, and their women, who work against their own best interests, to accept females as whole human beings. Early in life they are taught that biology is destiny: women are the ones who give birth, and therefore, "their place" is in the home to nurture and raise children. Thus, while trying to control their own women and girls, they feel threatened and would deny all females the teaching of progressive studies that tell young women their place is any place: from homemaking to making the White House.

And, even though recent figures indicate that more women than men are entering college, conservatives remain in their cocoon, trying in every way they can to keep women in "their place" and from learning about the real world. They stubbornly refuse to accept that feminism, simply defined, means social, political and economic equality for all humanity--for both women and men--in all of life's many roles and styles.

MARTHA ABELL

Downey

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