- SR 2534
This collection consists of an audio recording and transcript of a panel discussion titled "Oh What a Night! Conversations about Women, the 1970s, and Politics." The discussion was moderated by Melody Rose at the Oregon Historical Society in Portland, Oregon, on March 18, 2004. The four participants were Gretchen Kafoury, Vera Katz, Norma Paulus, and Betty Roberts. Introductory remarks were made by John Pierce.
In the panel discussion, Rose begins by describing the topics that the panel will cover, giving instructions for audience to ask their questions, and introducing the four speakers. Kafoury, Katz, Paulus and Roberts discuss why they entered politics, talk about meeting each other as fellow legislators during the 1973 legislative session, and describe the political climate for women's rights in Oregon and the United States at that time. They talk about their support for the Equal Rights Amendment. They describe legislation they worked on regarding women's rights, reproductive rights, and rights for LGBTQ people. They discuss their strategies for getting their legislation passed and the formation of the Women's Caucus. They discuss work still undone that they feel future women legislators should focus on, and warn that their own accomplishments will need to be safeguarded by future generations. They close the panel with advice for women aspiring to enter politics.
Rose then asks Kafoury, Katz, Paulus, and Roberts selected questions from the audience. They answer questions about the definition of feminism, about the role Black women politicians played in passing women's rights legislation, about Oregon's leadership on numerous progressive issues, and about the personal costs they paid for their legislative work. They also answer questions about the role Oregon Governor Tom McCall played, as well as women in the U.S. Congress; about the failure of the national Equal Rights Amendment; and about U.S. health care policy. The final question answered is about the books that Kafoury, Katz, Paulus, and Roberts are currently reading.
Kafoury, Gretchen Miller