Socialist Workers Party Builds June Active Workers Conference

SWP vice-presidential candidate Osborne Hart, right, at Verizon solidarity rally in Atlanta. Party is campaigning across country, fighting for ballot status, winning new Militant readers.

SWP vice-presidential candidate Osborne Hart, right, at Verizon solidarity rally in Atlanta. Party is campaigning across country, fighting for ballot status, winning new Militant readers.

From Maggie Trowe at The Militant:

The three-day Socialist Workers Party-sponsored Active Workers Conference begins June 16 in Oberlin, Ohio, less than five weeks from now. Several hundred people from across the U.S. and around the world will hear reports on working-class struggles, the crisis of the dictatorship of capital, the continuing example of Cuba’s socialist revolution and prospects for building an internationalist, revolutionary proletarian party. They will attend classes, panel discussions, social events and a final summary meeting, as well as have time to meet other participants and share experiences.

“I’ve been taking part in activities with the Socialist Workers Party — campaigning door to door in New Jersey, joining in the protest of 34 Women for Oscar López, the Puerto Rican independence fighter, and marching across the Brooklyn Bridge with Verizon strikers,” Yasemin Aydinoglu, a nurse from Brooklyn, New York, said May 9. “I’ve gotten curious about how it fits together, and going to the conference will give me a broader perspective.”

“Reading newspapers is different for me now,” she said. “I used to assume articles in papers like the New York Times gave an accurate picture. But after I went to a rally of workers for $15 an hour and a union at Foley Square, I read the Times article the next day that reported that Governor Cuomo promised a $15 minimum wage, never mentioning the workers’ protests.”

The conference will culminate the SWP’s spring party-building activities. As we enter the last week of the six-week drive to win subscribers and financial supporters for the Militant, 1,233 subscriptions have come in toward the 1,550 international quota and $66,646 toward the $110,000 goal for the Militant Fighting Fund.

In Atlanta Keith Beaver said he wanted to help win more readers to the Militant. He mailed in three subscriptions from relatives and friends. Then he invited party members to go door to door with him in his neighborhood in Decatur May 10. In two hours they sold six subscriptions and a copy of Is Socialist Revolution in the U.S. Possible? And got a $5 contribution to the Militant Fighting Fund.

“We talked with members of the International Longshoremen’s Association outside their union halls in Miami and Ft. Lauderdale last week,” SWP Miami organizer Anthony Dutrow told the Militant. “Two dockworkers who are longtime readers renewed their subscriptions, and two others decided to try the introductory offer. We have seven subscriptions to go to make our quota.”

Party supporters in some areas are organizing to surpass their Militantfund quotas to help make the international drive a success. “We’ll go over our $3,500 goal,” SWP Twin Cities organizer David Rosenfeld reports.

Socialist Workers Party members and supporters are campaigning for Alyson Kennedy and Osborne Hart, the SWP candidates for U.S. president and vice president, as well as statewide candidates. Efforts to put the presidential ticket on the ballot have succeeded in Colorado and are underway in Louisiana, New Jersey, Tennessee, Washington state and Minnesota.

SWP supporters have been campaigning door to door in more than two dozen cities and towns across New Jersey — from Wanaque in the northwest to Lyndhurst, Nutley and Newark to Paulsboro in the south, joining Verizon strikers’ picket lines wherever they see them. Nearly 1,200 people have signed to put the party on the ballot and the party plans to wrap up the drive, hold a statewide press conference and file the nominating petitions at the state capitol in Trenton later this month.

Hart visits farmers in Georgia

SWP vice-presidential candidate Osborne Hart, accompanied by Sam Manuel, SWP candidate for U.S. Senate in Georgia, and Susan LaMont from Atlanta, traveled to southern Georgia and the Florida panhandle May 5-7 to talk with farmers and workers, learn more about their struggles and discuss coming to the party conference.

Willie Head, a farmer in Pavo, Georgia, who had toured Cuba farms with Manuel in 2015, showed them around his farm.

“I saw again how Cuba farmers, with the help of the Revolution, are able to keep their farm equipment going and overcome all kinds of obstacles so they can help feed the Cuban people,” Head said. “People around here are starved for political awareness. I don’t see how we can continue to exist if we aren’t political.”

Head showed them his new irrigation system, which he installed himself after waging a fight to get a grant from the government.

Hart told Head he agreed that following the revolutionary road Cuban toilers have taken is the only way workers and working farmers can survive.

To join the Socialist Workers Party in campaigning for socialism or find out more about the conference, contact the nearest party branch.

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