Dutch and the Third International PPC

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The Margaret Sanger Papers
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July 22, 2011, 9:44 a.m. (view history)

Long letter outlining the relations with the Dutch Society for Sexual Reform. Houghton received their Sept 1 letter four days after the recent meeting of the ICPP, and laid out a chronology of events.

1950: Dutch were slow to respond to her requests for information, jeopardizing the inclusion of a Dutch report

1951: Houghton met van Emde Boas in London, complained of Storm's lack of co-operation; he "explained the set-up, and helplessness of the medical members, and cynically said that only way to get co-operation of Dr. Storm was to make him president." She contacted them in April about the Fall meeting, but neither could make the dates (Boas on vacation in France, Storm still in active army duty), suggested in July that they move the meeting to Netherlands. End of July notified them that they could not move the meeting because plans were very advanced and other meetings in London had been scheduled for attendees. Aug. 20, Boas said that he might be able to come. Sept 4 they got the letter, after the meeting had been held.

Houghton picks at their contentions, defensively, says they have not paid attention to the literature they have been sent, esp. about India.  She asks whether they all want to answer themselves, or whether she should put together a "composite letter."

Copy of his letter to Houghton made and sent to Sanger and others. Notes indicate that they received the letter on Sept. 4 in London.

Storm does not believe that either he or Dr. van Emde Boas will be able to make the London meeting, nor can they send observers, but he wants to "make some statement, expressing our standpoint in general." They are disappointed that the meeting could not be held in the Neterhlands "to meet our difficulties" and were glad that they were able to talk to Dr. Stone last year.

They believe that "no progress of significance has been made into the direction of a permanent international organisation." Says that they are all busy, but "Somewhere or somehow the national organisations must have had either very little intertest in an int. org. at all, ot their interests differ too much to lead to effective co-operation; the latter possibility being most probable."

Sets up a division, where the Americans are "in for worldwide information as for dealing with the population problems of coloured people, esp. in Asia. The F.P.A. has but one important topic: the practical work of birth control in just those parts of the world that have historical and actual relations with Gr. Br.--with an unexplained lack of interest for b.c. in S. Africa, Canada, & Australia." Says that the RFSU is only heard from in terms of exporting pessaries.

Conf. They don't think that the Committee will lable India as a region where a world organization can be founded. "We in the Netherlands think that after Sweden and England it is our turn. In 1950 and 1951 we reserved in our budget funds to this purpose. ...We do not believe Asia has yet matured to a degree where the practice of b.c. can be advocated as such."