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Demonstrate by Day, Strategize by Night: A Report on the Socialist Convergence

by Johanna Brenner
August 24, 2016

On the steamy evening of July 27 in Philadelphia a raucous audience of close to 800 gathered to discuss electoral politics and movement-building. This was day three of Socialist Convergence, organized by a coalition of left organizations to create a socialist presence during the Democratic National Convention. Our target participants were the Sanders delegates and supporters who had promised to challenge the party’s lack of democracy and to organize protests in and around the convention that would serve notice on the party establishment.

An early core of organizers quickly expanded to include representatives from many groups and organizations who worked together extremely well as we negotiated the rocky road of planning a very ambitious undertaking: Solidarity, Philly Socialists, Philly Chapter of Democratic Socialists of America, Green Party of NY State, International Socialist Organization, Kentucky Workers League, Left Elect, Party for Socialism and Liberation, and Socialist Alternative...

Having secured the Friends Center for every evening of the DNC, organizers set about developing a program intended to offer a range of socialist politics on pressing topics including the capitalist economy, racism/white supremacy, environmental crisis, elections and independent politics, and intersectional feminism.

The LGBTQ Movement Today

by Donna Cartwright
August 19, 2016

A year after marriage equality was legalized nationwide, and two months since the June 12 massacre at a gay club in Orlando, the LGBT movement confronts a contradictory future. Although Orlando dramatized that violence against LGBT people persists, fueled by rightwing politicians’ hateful attacks, great victories have been won, and public acceptance of queer people has expanded to levels that once seemed unimaginable.

But some of these victories have been constrained by the social structures of neoliberal capitalism, and by a misleading yet widespread public perception that with the achievement of marriage equality, the fight for queer liberation is largely over. The LGBT movement has also undergone problematic changes, having become increasingly professionalized and money driven in the last 15 years or so. Major donors and large foundations call the shots. Many young activists have been drawn into a top-down, NGO-based model of organization.

Another problematic aspect of the over-emphasis on marriage equality in the queer movement has been the shift in focus toward the relationship of individuals with the state, obscuring the role of private employers in maintaining conventional social norms, and de-emphasizing the need for broader social solidarity...

For Jill Stein and Independent Politics

from the National Committee of Solidarity
July 19, 2016

If you believe that a better choice is possible, a movement for political revolution also needs an electoral expression. In this election, the best expression at the national level of what all of us have been fighting for is the Green Party campaign of Jill Stein. Solidarity supports that campaign as a way to support the political revolution in 2016.

Looking not only toward November but also beyond, especially to Bernie Sanders’ supporters who reject the dead-end option of Hillary Clinton, we urge you to consider that you need more than a different candidate: you need a different party. Hillary Clinton, after all, did not “hijack” the Democratic Party. She represents exactly what the Democratic Party really is: Wall Street connections, militarism, and all. There was no way that Bernie Sanders was going to be the Democratic nominee.

This reality explains why Jill Stein’s support has been growing. So are local independent political organizations, campaigns and ballot initiatives. We urge a vote for Jill Stein, but more than a one-time “protest vote,” solid independent political organization is a necessity. It’s going to be a long road, and there isn’t a magic success formula for creating a working class-oriented party in the United States that can be the voice of social movements. But at this point one thing should be clear: the trap of voting for one after another “lesser evil” corporate candidate will only leave us with worse and more barren choices.

August 24, 2016
by Johanna Brenner
On the steamy evening of July 27 in Philadelphia a raucous audience of close to 800 gathered to discuss electoral politics and movement-building. This was day three of Socialist Convergence, organized...
August 19, 2016
by Donna Cartwright
A year after marriage equality was legalized nationwide, and two months since the June 12 massacre at a gay club in Orlando, the LGBT movement confronts a contradictory future. Although Orlando...
July 19, 2016
from the National Committee of Solidarity
If you believe that a better choice is possible, a movement for political revolution also needs an electoral expression. In this election, the best expression at the national level of what all of us...

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