I think that at events like this it’s good for us to remember how lucky we are to have had this opportunity to work together with so many wonderful people over the years: to engage with each other both as colleagues and even as friends.* I know Howard Zinn used to talk about this, and as usual, he was right. What a privilege to have been fellow travelers with people from different generations who long for worldwide human community and an end to socially created human suffering. Of course we have to deal with each others craziness. But who else would you want to hang out with?
In this impromptu talk, veteran organizer and movement thinker Mel King, outlines his thoughts about the significance of the #Occupy movement, its potential for radical social change and its methods. Although an enthusiastic supporter of the movement, Mel suggests that in time the movement will have to choose targets (once it is ready) and also consider moments where the consensus process may be less effective. He goes on to applaud the movement for engaging in the battle of ideas, "You are occupying minds!"
I was enjoying the Thanksgiving holiday in New York with my wife and her family, when I noticed that there was a voice message on my cell phone.
Black Friday is upon us. The malls have been mobbed since midnight, and retailers are saying they want to be allowed to open on Thanksgiving Day too. They argue that consumers should have the choice to shop on Thanksgiving, which state law now prohibits. Fortunately for them, Rep. Colleen Garry has filed legislation (House Bill 00989; perhaps it’s one of several) to allow stores to sell anything, anytime – even on Christmas, unless it falls on a Sunday. Say what?
Video of the UMass Boston Student Union - an outgrowth of the Occupy UMass Boston movement - rallying on campus on Thursday and then participating in an Occupy Boston march with labor in downtown Boston shortly afterwards.
Occupy Wall Street (OWS) has given our timorous, unimaginative, and politically ambivalent unions a much-needed ideological dope slap. Some might describe this, more diplomatically, as a second injection of “outside-the-box” thinking and new organizational blood.
Interview the City Stenographer, Boston City Council about the new stenographic scopist technologies including the Diamante Stenograph. Ask about Closed Captioning for folks with hearing loss.
As the Massachusetts Legislature considers this year’s crop of criminal justice reform bills, one that has not gotten much attention is a measure to ensure proper treatment of pregnant women in jail and prison.
Improving the medical treatment and protecting the constitutional rights of these women is vitally important and would contribute to the Commonwealth’s goal of reducing health disparities, because prison policies have a disproportionate impact on poor women and African American women.
Customer Communication Technicians who work out of Comcast's Fall River and Fairhaven offices have petitioned the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) to supervise a union representation election. If a majority of the techs vote for union representation it will finally compel management to begin talks with employees for improvements in wages and working conditions.
The open letter below is addressed to Facing History and Ourselves Executive Director Margot Strom, Associate Executive Director Martin Sleeper and Board Chairwoman Tracy Palandjian.
An Open Letter to "Facing History and Ourselves"
To: Executive Director Margot Strom,
Associate Executive Director Martin Sleeper,
Board Chairwoman Tracy Palandjian