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Tidbits - February 2, 2017 - Reader Comments: Senate Dems Need Spine; Open Letter to Historic Women's March; Readers respond to Bhaskar Sunkara; Union Membership Continues Decline, Building Trades Makes Deal; How to Resist; and more...

Reader Comments: Whither the Resistance - Senate Dems Need Spine; Open Letter to Historic Women's March; And this is Just the First Two Weeks; Readers respond to Bhaskar Sunkara, "Our Alternative"; Union Membership Continues Decline, Building Trades Leadership Makes Deal, Undercuts Rest of Labor; Resources - How to Resist, What to Do;Announcements - Vito Marcantonio Forum; Igniting the Socialist Resistance Against Trump; Never Forget the Japanese Internment; and more..

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Tidbits - Reader Comments, Resources and Announcements - February 2, 2017, Portside
Resources:
Announcements:
(posting on Portside Culture)
 
 
Please read and share, have your children memorize parts of it make it a lesson, a teachable moment for all
 
Norma Garcia
 
 
 
 
 
I sent the following email to Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer early this morning:
 
Subject: An Email to Senate Democratic Minority Leader Chuck Schumer
 
I think its time the Democrats in the US Senate send a powerful message to the Republican Majority in the Senate and Donald Trump:
 
It strikes me the Dems are in position to reply directly to Mitch McConnell and the GOP Senate Majority's refusal to confirm Barack Obama's nomination to the Supreme Court.
 
The Democrats in Congress have been willing to accommodate the GOP Senate Majority in past sessions going back to Bush 43 and before. Senate Majority Leader McConnell has a shortsighted view of the prerogatives of the two parties in the US Senate.  There's something known as tit for tat.
 
I recommend, Senator Schumer, that you ask fellow Democrats in the Senate whether it makes sense for them to prevent consideration of  the Trump Supreme Court nomination on grounds the Obama nomination was left to twist slowly in the wind instead of being considered.
 
If they agree, I suggest you ask if they will agree to participate in no hearings for the Trump Court nominee until Trump has withdrawn his own candidate and nominated Obama's nominee  Merritt Garland for consideration to the court instead.
 
This sort of hardball is not the usual tactic of the Democrats.  But its time to start to stop the GOP and its cheating ways.  During the campaign the GOP provocateur candidate Donald Trump allowed that if he didn't win the election, he would consider the election unfair and in the hands of a rogue band of unqualified voters cheating him out of his just due.
 
This, in effect, is the stunt McConnell and the GOP Senate Majority has already pulled on the Senate Democrats regarding the Garland nomination.
 
I suggest a codicil to your new nomination as well: An olive branch., If the GOP Senators allow hearings on Garland conducted fairly in the US Senate, the Democrats will not stand in the way of hearings on a new candidate for the court by Donald Trump in the four years of his administration, in the event a sitting Justice should resign or die in office.
 
But if Merritt Garland is not made a Justice of the Supreme Court to replace Scalia, then no other Trump nominees will be considered either, in the event of a court resignation or death during Trump's first term.
 
Another condition:  If Trump fails to nominate Garland and he is NOT confirmed, then the Senate Democratic edict will continue in the event of a second Trump term as well.
 
This DEAL is the same one the forward looking Mitch McConnell offered Senate Democrats after the death of Judge Scalia.
 
Mike Rice
Sparta, Wisconsin
 
 
 
 
 
 
The marches on Washington, Chicago, New York, Los Angeles, Denver, Indianapolis, and hundreds of other cities in the U. S. and around the world were a sharp rebuff to President Donald Trump and his often-stated policies of racism, xenophobia, misogyny, homophobia and religious bigotry.  Taken together they were the largest political demonstration ever in the history of the world, bringing out an estimated 4.6 million people in the U. S. alone.
 
The success of the demonstrations poses the question: what next?  The answer so far has been countless new demonstrations all over the country opposing specific Trump policies and cabinet nominees.  The answer posed by Michael Moore Saturday adds that to protest we must add organization at the grass roots for political power, running progressives for office at every level.
 
But this is only part of the story, and history shows that it may come to nothing if the movement doesn't face the reality that the demonstrations Saturday were over 90 per cent white.  I don't know why the massive outpouring Saturday was so pale.  I only know that history teaches us that without the involvement and leadership of Black people, Latinos, and those oppressed because of the color of their skin, movements such as this founder and dissipate.
 
In Washington on Saturday Angela Davis noted that "Those who still defend the supremacy of white, male, hetero patriarchy had better watch out. The next 1,459 days of the Trump administration will be 1,459 days of resistance-resistance on the ground, resistance in the classrooms, resistance on the job, resistance in our art and in our music. This is just the beginning. And in the words of the inimitable Ella Baker, we who believe in freedom cannot rest until it comes."
 
Speaking at a Martin Luther King Day program on Tuesday at the University of Missouri in Columbia about the March, Davis said, "[The Women's March] is a moment that teaches us what we are striving to create."  She specifically called for resistance to mass incarceration and the anti-Muslim and anti-immigrant policies of President Donald Trump.  The movement must embrace the demands for prison abolition, an end to police violence, sexual and gender orientation rights, opposition to industrial farming, free education, justice for Palestine and solidarity with Syrian refugees, she said.
 
The role of Angela Davis is an example of what Black leadership can bring to a movement.  Black leadership is the only way that the crisis in communities of color in the U.S. can be kept at the center of the crisis of the whole country.
 
Jenna Wortham observed in the New York Times, "Those who were criticized for not participating reminded their followers of the suffrage movement, when black women were increasingly marginalized in the fight for the right to vote, and highlighted the lack of policing at the women's march, a luxury never granted at Black Lives Matter demonstrations. And they reminded anyone who'd forgotten that 53 percent of all white women who voted for Trump, while 94 percent of black women voters cast their ballots for Hillary Clinton. They reminded people that it is very likely that the white women in the photograph probably know - or are related to - someone who voted for Trump. That photo cuts to a truth of the election: While black women show up for white women to advance causes that benefit entire movements, the reciprocity is rarely shown."
 
A friend of Wortham's observed group of Black and brown people speaking Arabic in a DC restaurant after the march.  Another patron began berating them and made a scene, accusing them of supporting ISIS and the Taliban. Wortham notes that "Nearby sat a table of white women, still proudly donning their pussyhats. The women watched silently. None elected to intervene. 'Isn't this what you marched for?' my friend said to them. 'Isn't this what today was about? Standing up for injustice? Yet when you see it happen in your face, you just enjoy your meal quietly?'"
 
How is the movement that was born Saturday going to win political power without the leadership and mass participation of Black people, as well as all other people of color?  How will that happen if white people don't take up the fight against white supremacy when it's in their face, not an abstraction?  How will the movement succeed if it fails to place the centuries-long and continuing oppression and repression of African-Americans, Latinos, Native Americans and all the victims of U. S. triumphalism at the center of our struggle?
 
The only way to ensure that this movement can truly unite everyone progressive in our country is to guarantee that unity is built from the ground up, starting by recognizing the indispensable leadership of Black people.  We all have a stake in building this movement, regardless of our color or ethnicity or gender.  Donald Trump is making this a life or death issue for all of us.
 
Ted Pearson
 
 
 
 
 
"It's Us against the world." Breitbart.news. October 10, 2016.
 
"Don't be fooled by the surface cosmopolitanism of the new president and his appointees. For all their international experience, these people care about the planet the way pornographers care about sex. Their interactions are purely transactional, just the means to an end. There couldn't be less empathy for the people out there involved in the drama. It's all about the money and that piercing sense of conquest.
 
The Trump team's approach, a globalism of the 1%, benefits themselves even as it reinforces American exceptionalism. Their worldview is a galaxy distant from the sort of democratic internationalism that values diplomacy, human rights, and multilateral cooperation to address planetary problems like climate change and economic inequality. Such a foreign policy of mutual engagement is, in fact, exactly what's under immediate threat. As with Obamacare, the incoming administration wants to shred an inclusive project and substitute an exclusive one for it. In so doing, it will replace a collection of liberal internationalists with something worse: a confederacy of oligarchs."
 
John G Mason
 
 
 
 
 
This article is valuable - very worth reading.
 
Diane Laison
 
 
 
 
 
The best way to oppose Trump's threats to scientists and to the voting system is to rebuild as quickly as possible the Democratic Party. Its weakness has allowed Republicans to win seats at all levels, to pass voting restrictions in states, and to block legislation and appointments at the Congressional level. The outpouring of opposition by demonstrators this past week is fine but they will get tired. The only way to harness that energy is to  raise money, ensure progressive policies, and run campaigns under the Democratic Party and on-line. Progressives need goals and the first goal should be to take back the House and Senate in the next round of elections in 2 years. A coherent opposition movement should also constantly protest moves by the Trump administration to suppress scientists and to rejig the voting system. The opposition should continue to demonstrate on various issues but they should also support raising money to sustain the opposition and to advertise what Trump is doing.
 
Suppression in any form is dangerous in a democracy especially when it comes from the top. Trump is displaying attributes of a dictator in addition to his prejudices which are well known and his sense of entitlement (if he doesn't want to live in the White House, he should pay for security to live in NY).
 
This is a dangerous time for America. He is going to offend and hurt a lot of people. But it is very important that the voting system remains free so you can get rid of some Republicans in 2 years and him in 4 years. The mystery to everyone is how and why Trump is President at all. He is unsuitable, unknowledgeable, arbitrary, silly and corrupt!
 
Laurel MacDowell
 
 
 
 
 
A wrong-headed approach. There is no reason, under the existing rules, that the DP can't be moved significantly left - not socialist, but social democratic, which is what we need. Right now, people who are oriented to social democracy should be involved in the DP and push it in that direction. Joining with Our Revolution is a good starting point. Author of article unclear what he means by socialist. If he's talking about Bernie Sanders socialism, that's social democracy. If he's talking about Jacobin socialism, well that's an outdated, obsolete ideology that's just a dead end.
 
Marc Beallor
 
    ====
 
In his article, "Our Alternative," Bashkar Sunkar's advice to turn the political center - the Democratic Party leadership at every layer, the caste leading liberal reform groups, labor's leadership, and former president Obama - into the main enemy alongside Trump has a radical ring to it, but it is exactly the wrong thing to do.
 
The right thing is its opposite, that is, the left and progressives should join with the political center to resist the Trump administration and its authoritarian tendencies. Such a coalition would be the underbelly of a still broader opposition to Trump's ethno-nationalist, corporatist regime. 
 
Its moral authority and political power would lie in its unity in action in defense of democratic values, rights, protections, and institutions. And It would be dynamic and fluid. When differences cropped up within it - and they inevitably would, given its different political tendencies, the accent, if it hopes navigate the country to a safe harbor, would be on cooperation, on finding common ground against the existential threat of Trump and Trumpism. 
 
This is a huge undertaking, but it's not as if it has never been done before. In escaping a massive economic crisis and constructing a new political economy and social compact in the 1930s, in overthrowing a many layered and deeply racist system, sanctioned by law, custom, and violence, in the 1960s, and in electing the first African American president in our nation's history in 2008, disparate people, organizations, classes, and political tendencies and formations joined hands in pursuit of a common objective. And the Democratic Party, albeit a reforming one in each instance, was part of this, as well as labor, people of color - especially African Americans - women, youth, and, not least, new social movements that captured the political imagination of the under or unrepresented, while infusing new energy and fresh ideas into the larger coalitions.
 
The left in each of these transformative moments chose not to stand apart from the galaxy of people, social organizations, and political formations that comprised these coalitions, not to position itself at unremitting loggerheads with center and moderate political trends and groupings. On the contrary, it interacted with a broad range of people and organizations, found "contested" common cause with "reformists" and "centrists," like Roosevelt, LBJ, and Obama, and engaged in "bourgeois" electoral and legislative politics. This engagement didn't weaken their cause or their brand or their mobilization from below; instead it opened up new opportunities to enhance each and move off the margins of political life.
 
Some on the left surely had hesitations, but the challenges of those moments compelled them to rethink and stretch out their strategic and tactical concepts and practices to match the new political realities and challenges of those moments. They bade farewell to political purity, to small-universe ideas, to reflexive scorn of the people, organizations, and parties making up the center of political life, and to insurrectionist dreams. In an about-face, they embraced a politics that allowed for stages of struggle, a dialectic between reform and radical demands, a place for the art of compromise, a willingness to mingle with unreliable and conditional allies, a readiness to retreat when circumstances dictated, a disposition to redefine what it means to be "American," a recognition of the necessity to enter the state, and an understanding that - call it what you want - forms of oppression, or issues of identity, or democratic rights (broadly understood) are organic to class formation, consciousness, and unity, not to mention democratic and popular alliances and coalitions.
 
In the end, they realized that politics of "principled" opposition and outrage, of fast forwarding to the future, of entertaining nothing but the most radical positions, of making their radical desires their strategic and tactical roadmap, and of relentless criticism of moderate and liberal leaders and organizations, is like a drug. It brings a momentary high, and it may make a difference here or there, but it has no transforming potential on a scale that can change the lives of millions for the better; it offers no pathway for the left or the broader movement to reach higher ground, to the ground of radical democracy or democratic socialism.
 
Isn't it time to leave those politics behind? The answer is that most left and progressive people - and people generally - already are, as evidenced by the inspiring, largely spontaneous, reaching across boundaries reaction to Trump's executive orders. 
 
As one who was once a part of the communist movement, we were profoundly wrong in the early 1930s in Germany, U.S., and elsewhere when we turned social democratic and democratic currents to the right of us into bitter adversaries. That changed a few years later, but by that time, it was too late in Germany, and much harm had been done in other countries.
 
Let's not make the same mistake again. Too much is at stake.
 
Sam Webb
 
    ====
 
I watched the last few minutes of a forum of candidates for DNC chair tonight on CSpan. Even it smacked of a certain sectarianism. They seemed all focused on staffing issues and how to diversify the vendor and consultant pool. In their closing statements, only one candidate focused on winning elections: Rep. Keith Ellison. This is going to be a really rough ride....
 
Bhaskar Sunkara wants to take us back to the magical thinking of 1932! He seems to want the politics attendant to the Center in power for the moment when the Right is in power. He sounds more like a badly informed romantic than a well informed analyst.
 
He also seems to be mixing up US politics with some political model he got from a partisan treatise of nearly a century ago that guided left wing action with some pretty awful results. It didn't work then. It won't work now. I put it this way because we have been here before, and these politics are not new. The names may be contemporary, but the political philosophy is not. It would be a very useful thing to detail the genealogy of this point of view precisely, just in case somebody mistakenly thinks Sunkara is actually referring to the United States in 2016, and not, say, Shanghai in 1927 or Berlin in 1932.
 
While all of us want to build the left, the conclusion that it can happen outside of a united front against the right has no historical warrant. Why doesn't Sunkara know this? Again, this is what I mean by 1932; he seems to reject those politics that have, historically, really built the left in favor of those that have, historically, led to brutal defeat.
 
Geoffrey Jacques
 
    ====
 
Wow, what a terrible article. I'm taken aback by how Bhaskar Sunkara has turned out. To be happy that Sanders "stirred a rabid opposition to Clinton and Clintonism among millions of people"? What? Is "rabid opposition to Clinton" something to celebrate?
 
Sue Vago Webb 
 
 
 
 
 
Of course Torture works--to produce false confessions.  I teach Early Modern European history and we see there what people subjected to torture will confess to--flying off o witches' sabbaths, participating in Black Masses where they had sex with the devil and his minions--recounted in great detail, as in "his ___ was hard as iron and red hot as he penetrated my ..." So anyone who relies on what someone says under torture is a fool.
 
Stan Nadel
 
    ====
 
The effectiveness of torture is not a new subject. Good-Bye To All That, by Robert Graves, is about his experience in the trenches in World War I. He says, on page 184 of my 1998 edition:
 
"None of us had heard of German prisoners being more than threatened at headquarters to get military information from them. The sort that they could give was not of sufficient importance to make torture worth while; and anyhow, it had been found that, when treated kindly, prisoners were anxious in gratitude to tell as much as they knew. German intelligence officers had probably discovered that too."
 
That is, it was known on both sides, 100 years ago, that torture is not as effective in getting information as is good treatment. So how come we are still planning to use it?
 
Steve Lane
 
 
 
 
(posting on Portside Labor)
 
 
The union leaderships should be required to organize the unorganized, including "gig" workers, and to stop selling out the younger workers as they have for decades. If they do not start making better efforts to do so, they should be voted out and lose their salaries.
 
Sonia Collins
 
 
 
 
 
Len, great article! I wanted to add, for those not familiar with the trades, is this: Most, with a few notable exceptions, have always been "conservative". Once of the reasons they were relatively easy to organize is the guild structure most were formed around before the labor movement. These guilds were, shall we say, very protective about who got into them... My grandpa, a union man all his life, was very happy to sneer at the IWW as "I won't work". To him the purge of leftist from the unions during McCarthy's time was welcome. Point being is that many (again, not all) trade unions are dominated by company unionists: they feel the system works fine, even as the are eviscerated by an anti-unionist like Trump.I have benefited financially from the trade unions but I wish them to become more inclusive and a voice for change.
 
Steve Krug
 
 
 
 
 
Lots of good facts here about the economic history and plans of someone who likes to BS.
 
Ruth Wangerin Tehrani
 
 
 
 
 
First and foremost I want to say to all my Mexican and South American brothers and sisters in La-La Land (Camp Shohola) that we oppose this travesty imposed by our newly elected Government of Trump. Welcome to Trumpistan!
 
Many of us nevertheless well know and understand that in fact this ridiculous and exorbitantly expensive construction of a 2000 mile wall to secure the southern border began long before Donald Trump. Sadly the last presidents, Bushes, Clinton and even Obama have played their respective part in this paranoia of xenophobia and American nativism most of all this fear and hatred of all Spanish speaking "others."
 
Please have no fear. La-La land will forever be a safe haven for your return.
This is our promised land. Your American Shohola brothers and sisters will swear to this. We will fight for your colors and raise them to the sky. We are each loyal son, and we raise our fists to the sky. For us together, we as brothers and sisters stand. Rah Rah Rah!!!!
 
We at Shohola are a Sanctuary Camp. We do not rely on US government funds. We are fearless protectors.
 
But to the larger matter of this Hostile Act, read the text below. Read and Share.
 
"The Federation for American Immigration Reform, an organization that the Southern Poverty Law Center considers a hate group, cheered the president's order as a step in the right direction, saying in a statement that the wall "will go a long way in making effective border control a reality." (The federation's longtime executive director, Julie Kirchner, was this week named chief of staff at U.S. Customs and Border Protection.)
 
Numerous civil liberties and human rights organizations, meanwhile, blasted Trump's immigration directives as emblematic of a horrifying descent into discriminatory and racist policy territory.
 
"This wall would say that those from outside the United States, especially from Latin America, are to be feared and shunned - and that is just wrong," Margaret Huang, executive director of Amnesty International USA, said in a statement. "We will fight this dangerous move with everything we've got." Omar Jadwat, director of the American Civil Liberties Union's Immigrants' Rights Project, added, "President Trump's fantasy of sealing the border with a wall is driven by racial and ethnic bias that disgraces America's proud tradition of protecting vulnerable migrants."
 
Border security experts have long pointed out that a wall alone would not solve the problems of immigration and crime that Trump so often describes. Indeed, Trump's own director of DHS, the retired Gen. John Kelly, said as much in his Senate confirmation hearing.
 
"Wasting billions of taxpayer dollars on a border wall Mexico will never pay for, and punishing cities that do not want their local police forces forced to serve as President Trump's deportation dragnet, does nothing to fix our immigration system or keep Americans safe," said California Rep. Nancy Pelosi. The criticism was not limited to Democrats. Texas Republican Rep. Will Hurd, a former clandestine CIA officer whose district includes some 800 miles of border territory, said the wall would accomplish little. "The facts have not changed," Hurd said in statement. "Building a wall is the most expensive and least effective way to secure the border."
 
Larry Aaronson
 
 
 
 
 
I Was Wrong ...
 
On the eve of DJT's inauguration, I expressed that the dignity, the awesomeness, the impressive power, the global respect, the exalted aura of being president cloaked in the environment of the White House ... has the power to overwhelm and humble, and that such ethos possesses a naturally moderating effect on occupants of White House position and authority.
 
This idyllic vision applies to persons of at least some innate intellect, vision, normalcy, sense of and respect for history, and awareness and appreciation of the global impact of their every policy, decision, utterance, or thought. Unfortunately, what inherited the White House on January 20 is a simpleton, paranoid, schizophrenic, bullying, wheeler-dealer, thin-skinned megalomaniac, incapable of understanding detail, contrary views, or alternative realities. A madman whose vision is simply to tear down what exists; whose cabinet picks were based solely on dedicated opposition to what is, with a commitment to dismantling without regard, vision, or idea of replacement.
 
Given this miasmic insanity, the Left will be in constant ineffective turmoil running hither and yon attempting to react to never ending proclamations and forecasts of horrific doom. Many of which will devolve into sound and fury, signifying nothing. Though endowed with perhaps the most solid opposition-proof party backing in history, Rebug veterans cannot so easily shake their visible awareness of the global repercussion of senseless policies -- and even without Demo opposition -- will be loathe to authorize unjustifiable budgets necessary to enact idiotic White House pronouncements.
 
That said, the next four years will still be the roughest, toughest, tightest, stingiest, most oppressive imaginable. In the interim, the energies of the Left must be directed to an iron-clad assurance that these four years and the destabilized shambles in their wake must come to abrupt termination. There is not much the Left can do about the present four years ... but it will be inexcusable if this already operative nightmare extends beyond 2020.
 
James E. Vann
 
 
 
 
(posting on Portside Labor)
 
 
Two dozen states have passed so-called "right-to-work" laws, which prohibit employers from requiring workers - if represented by a labor union - to become members of that union and pay dues.
 
 
 
 
 
 
This article highlighting the deep connection between climate change and militarism is very welcome. However, making misleading arguments by exaggerating the greenhouse gas emissions from the military is all too common and misses the main point why the Military Industrial (Fossil Fuel Nuclear State Terror and Surveillance) Complex, the "MIC", must be terminated to have any remaining hope of avoiding climate catastrophe.
 
Naomi Klein in "This Changes Everything" says that the U.S. military is biggest consumer of petroleum on the planet. Nevertheless, according the figures she cites for 2011, the total carbon dioxide equivalent emissions of the Department of Defense is less than 0.2% of the global total for that year (data from the International Energy Agency). This is far less than the  5% figure from a 2009 book cited in this article. But there is a much bigger reason why the MIC, at the core of 21st Century Capitalism, is such a huge block to implementation of a prevention program to avoid climate catastrophe. First, the obvious, the MIC is indeed the source of colossal waste of energy and material resources which should go to meet human and nature's needs on our planet. But most relevant to the threat of climate catastrophe is the role of the Pentagon/NATO as the "global oil-protection service" for the MIC and its imperial agenda, indeed for the transnational capital class itself. And this agenda
blocks the global cooperation and equity required for a successful prevention program, while the time window of opportunity rapidly decreases. The weak results of COP21 tell us that radical changes in both the physical and political economy are needed.  There is virtually no chance such a prevention program can be realized as long as the State Terror apparatus is locked in the vicious cycle of violence with its useful enemy, its terrorist antagonist.
 
For more on this subject go to my 2016 article, How Much and What Kind of Energy Does Humanity Need?, Socialism and Democracy, 30:2, 97-120.
 
David W Schwartzman
 
 
 
 
 
What a great collection of ACTION opportunities, reader feedback and notices for future hell-raising! Onward!
 
Leanna Noble
 
 
 
 
 
I signed up for the Jewish Voice for Peace Rapid Response Network, along with more than 8000 others. I wanted to share with Portside readers part of the very concrete suggestions that Stefanie Fox, Deputy Director of JVP sent out last Thursday.
 
Fred Niles
 
 
 
Click here
 
This, to say the least, is as bad as we could have expected.
 
But these orders will not stand forever. It's going to take a lot of work - AND we can do it. Let's get started. Here are 3 immediate ideas:
 
1. Call your Member of Congress
 
Trump's executive orders may have been a unilateral act, but it's critical we engage congress about it early and often for two key reasons: 1) because we must demand our electeds resist the codification of this kind of blatant racism and Islamophobia every time it happens and 2) because these orders are only the opening blow in what will clearly be a long term fight that will also play out in congress in even deeper and more harrowing ways. We have to make our voices heard, and now.
 
Use this link to find your rep's phone number: 
 
And here's a suggested script:
 
Hi my name is [full name], and I'm calling as a constituent to ask [Representative/Senator] [Last Name] to speak out with urgency about Trump's anti-Muslim, anti-immigrant, and racist executive orders.
 
These policies are a worst nightmare designed to target, profile, surveil and ban people due to their religion, race, national origin or legal status. Many of us are here today because our parents and grandparents or ancestors were welcomed into this country, as immigrants or as refugees [if it applies to you, be more specific, tell a story]. This kind of blatantly discriminatory policy will tear apart lives, families, and communities.
 
Will [Representative/Senator] [Last Name] make an immediate statement in opposition?
 
2. Get Visible
 
Go to jvp.org/nai to download "Stop Profiling Muslim' and "Refugees Welcome" posters - even if you have to print them on a half-broken black-and-white deskjet, stick these signs on your windows and bulletin boards, mount them on cardboard and take to the next protest in your town, post them at your office or local coffee shop, or share them with friends. Make it your profile picture!
 
There are more signs here and here, and a special set designed to support bystander inventions and creating welcoming spaces in the age of Trump here
 
3. Get Educated
 
This isn't the only Islamophobic policymaking in the country - there's a long and complex history this recent attack stands on.
 
If you want some truly solid background learning to launch yourself fully into this work - or have people in your life who do - please watch and share these two trainings on Fighting Islamophobia and Anti-Arab racism from our Ready to Fight series.
 
The first one is with Kalia Abiade, and the second is from just last night with Bina Ahmad. They both give deep context to the current moment we face.
 
Those are your first three action steps! Let us know how it goes and we'll be in touch very shortly with more ways to resist.
 
Onward,
 
Stefanie Fox
Deputy Director,
 
 
 
 
 
 
To Do :   Dial tel:(844)-6-RESIST to tell Congress to support ACA.
 
Action begins with information.
 
There are more of us who believe in equity and justice than those who support Donald Trump's ideology of fear and hate.
 
Together, we can harness the collective power of the people to resist the impact of a Trump presidency and to continue to make progress in our communities.
 
Get educated. Get organized. Take action.
If you'd like to begin organizing or become a partner in maintaining the site, reach out at info@staywoke.org. This is an open-source site - feel free to add and edit as new information arises.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Photographs by David Bacon, Riverside Art Museum
 
 
 
3425 Mission Inn Avenue
Riverside, CA 92501
 
 
 
 

 
 
Sunday, Feb. 5th, 2017, from 12-4pm 
 
Gaetana's Ristorante Italiano
143 Christopher Street (Corner of Greenwich Street)
 
 
The Vito Marcantonio Forum (VMF) is honored to present Hon. Melissa Mark-Viverito the Speaker of the New York City Council, who represents the 8th District, which includes much of Vito Marcantonio's old Congressional district, with the Vito Marcantonio Award. In so doing, the VMF recognizes that she has followed on the often rocky, hard path of fighting for all the people. The VMF also wants to acknowledge that Melissa, who is the first Puerto Rican and Latina to hold a citywide elected position, is a founding Co-Chair of the Progressive Caucus and a member of the Black, Latino, and Asian Caucus. After being elected to her first term in 2005 as Councilwoman, she sponsored and passed legislation regarding tenant harassment, building safety, greening buildings, and park conservancies. Mayor Bill de Blasio and Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito expanded the Earned Sick Time Act (also known as the Paid Sick Leave Law) to include 500,000 more New Yorkers. Most recently Speaker Mark- Viverito has been in the forefront of the national campaign to convince Pres. Barack Obama to grant a pardon to Oscar López Rivera, who has been in prison for thirty-five years.
 
Previous Recipients of the VMF Award have been Activist and Scholar Annette T. Rubinstein; Community Organizers, Pete Pascale; and American artist and activist, Ralph Fasanella.
 
The Vito Marcantonio Forum (VMF) is an educational organization dedicated to preserving the history of the radical political tradition of East Harlem, the cultural backdrop of Italian Harlem and El Barrio and increasing awareness of the American Labor Party that Marcantonio led for years, educator Leonard Covello; and the critical role of the Left that rallied around Marcantonio. 
 
Complete dinner will be served: appetizers, choice of entrée, dessert, and coffee/tea, nonalcoholic beverage.
 
General Admission: $20 in advance/$25 at the door.
Patron: $30 in advance/$35 at the door
Benefactor: $100
 
You can purchase tickets in advance by going to Brown Paper Tickets by clicking onto  this link; or by mailing a check made out to Gerald Meyer and mailed to 381-2n St. Bklyn, 11215, or Roberto Ragone @ 231 W 148th St. # 1R 10039.
 
 
Upcoming VMF event: Beloved Comrades: The Political and Personal  Partnership of Annette T. Rubinstein and Vito Marcantonio, with Gerald Meyer and Stephen Siciliano. Sat. March 4, 3:00 to 4:45, Community Room Mulberry Street Public Library.
 
Video Library - click here.
 
 
 
 
 
 

 
 
Click here for a Draft Program 
 
Political Context
 
This Presidents' Day weekend, the Young Democratic Socialists will gather for our annual winter conference in New York City titled Revolution at the Crossroads: Igniting the Socialist Resistance Against Trump. We did not choose the name lightly. In doing so, we call for leftists to collectively confront Trump and Trumpism at every possible opportunity. When a Trump administration attempts mass deportations of undocumented workers, when it attempts to register Muslims or roll back worker protections, when it attempts to take away reproductive, LGTBQ, civil, or any other rights, then we must militantly resist to prevent such measures.
 
To succeed, this must be explicitly socialist resistance. With liberalism having repeatedly shown itself incapable of combating the far right, it is now the time for socialists to openly declare our place in building the mass, multi-racial, and working class movement necessary for defeating the Trump administration. In this struggle, millennials will play an outsized role. That is why this conference comes at such a critical time-together we must create spaces for democratic and strategic discussion, spaces to gain organizing skills, and most importantly, spaces to form networks of young radicals for the future struggles ahead. These spaces will only come together if socialists come together. Join us this Presidents Weekend and help ignite the movement to defeat the Trump administration, continue the political revolution, and build the socialist alternative.
 
Key Deadlines
  • February 3rd: Early Bird Registration Ends - Tickets prices go up from $5 to $10
  • February 10th: Free Housing - We have limited free housing. You need to first register, then you will be sent an application for free housing.
 
Check out the working program (subject to change) 
 
 
February 17, 2017 at 6pm - February 19, 2017
 
Mayday Community Space
176 St Nicholas St
Brooklyn, NY 11237
 
 
 
CONTACT: David Duhalde - dduhalde@dsausa.org - (212) 727- 8610
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Click here for more information on remembrance action in your area. 
 
Over the last three decades, in communities throughout California and major cities nationwide, Day of Remembrance (DOR) has been commemorated on or near February 19th, when, in 1942, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066, setting into motion the exclusion, eviction, and incarceration of 120,000 persons of Japanese ancestry, both citizens and immigrants.
 
DOR events, along with the pilgrimages to former concentration camps and, on a national scale, the Commission on Wartime Relocation and Internment of Civilians (CWRIC) public hearings in 1981, played a key role in uniting the Japanese American community around the redress and reparations movement. These events and experiences brought the story to broader audiences and popularized the call for an official governmental apology, individual redress, and a community/public education fund, for the ultimate purpose of preventing a similar injustice from happening again.
 
*****
 
The U.S. is currently witnessing unprecedented levels of anti-Muslim hate speech and racially motivated hate crimes against minority populations. The need is greater than ever to publicly and vocally speak out against white supremacist ideology that is in conflict with our values as a nation. We strongly denounce inflammatory and racist rhetoric regarding civilian registries and concentration camps. We decry a national dialogue that dangerously courts with policies based in racism, fascism and xenophobia. We call on our fellow Americans to stand with us in solidarity of a society based on protection of civil liberties.
 
The best qualities of our country are embodied in our determination to uphold a nation and society that is based on respect and equality for all people. We have a history of having resisted and survived organized institutional attacks on our community and we are committed to building alliances to stand with our Muslim and immigrant friends and bring our resources to our collective defense.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Union of Radical Political Economics Brooklyn Conference: 
Left-Wing Economics in a Right-Wing Political Climate
 
St. Francis College, Brooklyn NY, April 8, 2017
 
 
The Conference will bring together the theoretical perspectives of radical political economics and the organizational experiences of those engaged in struggle on the many crucial issues confronting us today.   It will, we hope, contribute to the development of an agenda that can guide all of us in the difficult years ahead.
 
Workshops
 
Each workshop will include presentations on both the contribution of radical political economics to an understanding of the issues, and the current political activity relating to these. Approximately half of the two-hour period will be available for contribution from workshop participants.  Each workshop will conclude with a collective summary of areas of agreement and disagreement and the nomination of one or two people to present this summary at the closing session of the conference. (URPE plans to record this final session and make it available on the URPE web-site.)
 
The following is a preliminary listing of possible workshops topics:
  • Trump's fiscal policy (tax policy and infrastructure spending)
  • Income distribution: wages vs. profits
  • The Fight for $15 and other labor issues
  • Workplace organization - unions today
  • Immigration and global capitalism
  • Community organization and cooperatives
  • Health care after Obamacare
  • Student debt and the state of higher education
  • Households and the care economy
  • Black Lives Matter
  • Climate change and the environment
It is assumed that all workshops will recognize the class, gender, and racial/ethnic dimensions of issues.
 
All URPE members, friends of URPE, and those whose work (not limited to that in educational institutions) involves the development and presentation of radical political economic theory, are invited to contribute to the presentation of radical political economic theory.  The conference organizers also ask for help in soliciting input to the workshops from the activists whose work provides us with direction for our collective struggle.
 
Please register your interest in this conference, including nominations (or self-nominations) for workshop participants with: urpe@urpe.org. This will contribute to the organization of the conference and ensure that you will receive updates on conference plans as they develop.
 
Early registration: $30 per person; $15 for students.
Late registration (after March 18): $35  per person, $20 for students.
 
Note:  All participants may choose to pay more or less depending on their individual circumstances.  Registration fee includes cocktail party.  (Alcohol will be served only to those aged 21 or over.)
 
Since space for workshops is limited, participants will be asked to sign up for specific workshops - those who register early will be given preference when attendance reaches rooms' full capacity.
 
Online registration is here
 
The registration form can be viewed and downloaded here.