THE NATIONAL CONGRESS FOR MEN
"In the Autumn of 1980 there was an exploratory conference held in Utica, New York discussing the feasability of a national organisation. As a result thereof we decided on the name of NATIONAL CONGRESS FOR MEN as an avenue to establishment of a national entity for the men's movement.
The purposes of the NATIONAL CONGRESS FOR MEN are to improve the lifestyle of all men and to present and endeavor to solve issues encompassing the male population of the United States.
The NATIONAL CONGRESS FOR MEN does not intend to interfere in the structure or politics of state organisations. There shall be autonomous control of each organisation.
TEXAS FATHERS FOR EQUAL RIGHTS, Houston chapter, has voluntered to be the host chapter for the 1st NATIONAL CONGRESS FOR MEN.
At the NATIONAL CONGRESS FOR MEN which will be held at the Houston Airpot Hilton Inn, 500 Northbelt East, Houston, Texas, from June 12, 1981 to June 14, 1981, it is requested that as many as possible of the men's rights, fathers' rights and parents' rights activists or leaders register for this congress. Each group, organisation or chapter will be permitted one voting delegate and is allowed two alternate delegates.
Anyone who considers himself or herself a leader or activist in the men's movement should make a commitment to attend or send a representative to be with fellow activists.
There will be an election at the NATIONAL CONGRESS FOR MEN.
The cost of THE NATIONAL CONGRESS FOR MEN is $100 from June 12, 1981 to June 14, 1981. This includes two nights lodging, a cocktail party on Friday evening (Registration) from 7:00 P.M. to 10:00 P.M., the morning session on Saturday, the afternoon session on Saturday, the banquet on Saturday evening (cash bar), and the General Meeting on Sunday morning June 14, 1981. Breakfast and luncheon Saturday will be at everyones own espense.
Various topics are being used to establish a platform and resolutiong for the Congress."
THE AFORMENTIONED WAS IN A FLIER ( 25,000 FLIERS) WHICH WERE PRINTED BY EASTERN AIRLINES.
AT THE CONGRESS
"June 12, 1981
BRAVO--------YOU MADE IT1
Your commitment to attend this conference, as a representative of the movement in your part of the world, is noteworthy and we welcome your decision to participate in this national forum.
Our primary goals are:
1. To clarify and publicize the direction of the men's equality movement;
2. to share effective methods and experiences of improving men's lifestyles everywhere;
3. To draft resolutions reflecting our current issues/concerns, which will be submitted to the
United States Congress; and
4. To become acquainted with, and responsive to, one another.
We look forward to a busy, productive conference. Due to the limits of time, we solicit your help in adhering to the proposed agenda and format with a spirit of unity, tolerance and a few grains of humor. We will do our best to give everyone a voice in the proceedings, within the bounds of common sense.
We're glad you're here; we came to work, so------ let's get to it!
Joe Barbier, General Secretary
Jim Buckley, Director
Jim Brainard, Moderator"
" 1ST NATIONAL CONGRESS FOR MEN AGENDA
Friday, June 12, 1981
3:00 - 11:00 pm Registration, Room 1109
7:00 - 11:00 pm Get Acquainted Coctail Party (Open Bar) Madras Room
Satursay, June 13, 1981
Banquet and all General Sessions will be held in the Main Room. coffee and cakes served in Hall at Breaks.
7:00 am Registration
8:30 - 10:30 am Opening Session, Speaker: Fred Hayward
10:00 - 10:30 am Break
10:30 - NOON Working Session #1
NOON - 1:30 pm Lunch Break
1:30 - 3:00 pm Working Session #2
3:00 - 3:30 pm Break
3:30 - 5:00 pm Working Session #3
5:00 - 11:00pm Cash Barw/Cheese/Crackers
5:30 - 6:30 pm Special Forum - Points of View
-Nat Denman "Federal Rights in State Family Courts"
- Dan Logan "Men's Lives" (1 hour film) White Room
- Others to be announced
6:30 - 8:30 pm Free Time
8:30 - 10:30 pm Banquet, Texas -Style
Speakers: James Cook, Mel Roman, Dick Doyle
Sunday, June 14, 1981
8:30 - 10:00 am General Session: Speaker, Bill Wishard
10:00 - 10:30 am Break
10:30 - NOON General Session
NOON - 1:30 pm Lunch
1:30 - 3:00 pm General Session
3:00 - 3:30 pm Break
3:30 - 5:00 pm General Session
SPREAD THE WORD ---------WE'RE ON THE RIGHT ROAD
NATIONAL CONGRES FOR MEN
Convention '81, Houston, Tx
WORKING SESSION TOPICS
Saturday, June 12, 1981
TOPIC #1. (Green Room) TRADITIONAL MALE ROLES, THEIR EFFECTS ON MEN
& THEIR FAMILIES
Chairman: Cannot recall
Recording Secreatary: Cannot recall
Resource Consultant Cannot recall
The following items are suggested as issues to be discussed during session #1:
(1) Destructive nature of men
(2) Limitation of life's options
(3) The basis for gender discrimination
(4) The basis for sexism
(5) Cultural & legal obstacles for change
(6) Economic exploitation of males
(7) Legal enforcement of roles
(8) Value of males contribution to family as answer to wife's worth
TOPIC #II. ( Red Room) MALE/CHILD DISCRIMINATION IN CUSTODY & OPTIONS
FOR THE 80's
Chairman: Justus Baird, TFER-Houston Treasurer
Recording Secretary: Bill Swearingen, TFER- Houston
HOTFER NEWS Editor
Resource Consultant: Jim Cook
The following items are suggested as issues to be discussed during session #2:
(1) Historical perspective
(2) Sole custody
(3) Joint custody
(5) Enforcement of visitation
(6) Rights of children of divorce
(7) Affirmative action
(8) Accountability of support
(9) A fathers right to complete school records and announcements
(PTA, Conferences, etc)
(10) The unwed father
(11) Use of existing governmental agencies to initiate legal
(12) Children used as " property"
(13) Adversary process in determining custody
TOPIC #IV. (Blue Room) THE SEXES: HOW THEY DIFFER AND WHY
Chairman: Jim Brainard,TFER-Houston, Experience Session
Recording Secretary: Debbie Ehler,TFER-Houston member
(Expert on Sexuality!)
Resource Consultant: Mel Roman, PhD.
The following items are suggested as issues to be discussed during session #4:
(1) Men, Fathers & Sexuality
- Sexual stereotypes - Mocho & Macho
- Needs of men and women
- Responsibility of men and women
- Sex as a tool
(2) Your children and your new relationships
(3) Your ex-spouse and new relationships, your's and her's
- What's in marriage for men today
- New roles for men
- Sexual harassment (fact or fiction)
(4) Men and feminism
- ERA, a man's issue too
- Coalitions with the feminists
- Affirmative action
- Sexism and Chauvism in the women's and men's
- Equal opportunity and equal responsibility
TOPIC #V. (Orange Room) CULTURAL PORTRAYAL OF THE MALE
Chairman: Dan Jones, TFER-Houston member
Recording Secretary: Jacquelyn cox,TFER-Houston
Resource Consultant: Fred Hayward
The following items are suggested as issues to be discussed during session #5
(1) Traditional attitudes
(2) Media projections
(3) Portrayal of men as parents
(4) In literature/ women's magazines/feminist literature
(5) The male function in culture
(7) Shaping of attitudes
TOPIC #VI. (White Room) NETWORKING: COOPERATIVE EFFORTS THAT WORK -
For You, For Me, and For Us
Chairman: Wayne Herbert,TFER-Houston recent past Vice
President & member
Recording Secretary: Ralph Hall, TFER-Houston Experience
Resource Consultant: Joe Barbier
The following items are suggested as issues to be discussed during session #6
(1) Helping men with divorce
(2) How to organize a volunteer organization
(3) The newsletter - for better or for worse
(4) Communications with each other and others
(5) Surveillance committees
(6) Special services
(7) Lobbying efforts that work
(8) Attorney referrals & lists
(9) Experience sharing sessions
(10) Pro se instruction
(11) Telephone response (Tree)
(12) Court watch
(13) National Information Exchange
(14) Public relations
(15) Activities for fathers and children
(16) Structure of a national organization"
At the opening of the meeting as James Cook, President of the Joint Custody Association, of Westwood, California, put the gavel to the table to commence its opening there was a representive in Washinton, D.C. from the State of Maryland that got up on the floor of the United States Congress and read into the record that the 1st NATIONAL CONGRESS FOR MEN was meeting in Houston Texas and would be submitting its resolutions to the United States Congress.
Each qualifying organization was entitled to ONE voting delegate and TWO alternates (total of THREE votes), who were to be physically present at the conference. No absentee voting was permitted. Split voting by the THREE delegates was allowed.
There were present 137 delegates from 39 states, the Dictrict of Columbia, and one delegate from Norway. One of the delegates was an unwed father from Alaska that wanted a part in raising his child and attended the congress to help implement change.
In the agenda previosly mentioned the letters TFER stand for Texas Fathers For Equal Rights which was one of the most proactive father' rights groups in the United States at that time.
The majority of the delegates at the congress were fathers rights activist. There were a few mens rights activists. There was one point in the congress when one of the delegates from Arizona, a father's rights activist, came up to me and stated that he did not like the wording on one of the propositions of one of the men's rights activists who is trying to sneek something through. He further stated that if this men's right activist gets what he wants the fathers' rights activists from the South and Midwest (the Bible Belt) will pull out of the organization. Negotiations, negotiations, negotiations, worked for awhile. But the minority wanted its way over time which played a part in the overall collapse of the organization.
Looking backwards a little, the exploratory conference that was in Utica,New York on the weekend of September 27-29, 1980 was very productive. Those present were: Tom Alexander of Male Parents for equal rights, Delaware; John Rossler, Bruce Gerling and Jim Taylor of Equal Rights For Fathers, New York; and Joseph and Mimi Barbier of Fathers United For Equal Rights(NJ), Inc. At this conference discussions were made as to what would be a good name for an national organization whereby all other organizations could maintain their own autonomy.
We decided on THE NATIONAL CONGRESS FOR MEN. We then searched the fathers and mens rights network to decide who should sit on the Ad Hoc Committee for the National Congress For Men. We came up with 20 men to serve on the Ad Hoc Committee. James Cook
of The Joint Custody Association of California was to be interim President and Joseph Barbier of Fathers United For Equal Rights(NJ) Inc was to be interim General Secretary. A preliminary agenda was made for the first convention and a search was set up to pick the possible locations.
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