Place: New York City

Fighting for teachers unions that speak back to power, defend students and social justice

School reopenings have become a point of political conflict on a national level, as parent, student, and teachers’ rights to have healthy, safe, equitable schools have been subordinated to the bipartisan consensus to put the economy and profit over human need.

When NYC Jewish Organizations Enthusiastically Supported Boycotts

The Jewish establishment has condemned the NYC Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) for asking candidates if they would forgo plans to take trips to Israel as an act of solidarity with Palestinians. Of course it’s a croc. It’s also hypocrisy.

The Whitney Took Down My Mural

They never asked us to paint on the plywood barrier built to protect the building during the recent protests. But for a few nights we painted. Mine was a mural about police brutality toward protestors. Now the Whitney has taken them all down.

On the Attack on Robert Cuffy at the Mass March to Defund the NYPD

While leading Monday June 29th’s Mass March to Defund the NYPD & Abolish the Police, Robert Cuffy was filming the march when he was blindsided and tackled by an unidentified man who then slammed Robert into another car, dislocating his shoulder. Police released the attacker without charges.

In Honor of George Floyd – Thoughts in the Aftermath of the Brooklyn Protest

The Black liberation struggle is once again ripping open the pandora’s box of American capitalism. This rebellion is exposing the brutal, sick and twisted priorities of American capitalism to the entire world.

Neoliberal Healthcare Fails the COVID Test

The decades of neoliberal restructuring, combined with this specific, Trump-led incompetence and just profound callousness towards the lives of working people, is going to lead to upwards of a quarter-of-a-million people dying from this overall.

In the Tempest of Coronavirus: Racism and Class Struggle

This article was written for L’Anticapitaliste, the biweekly newspaper of the New Anticapitalist Party (NPA) of France.
COVID-19 is now in all U.S. states with 530,026 cases and 20,614 deaths (as of April 12). Statistics suggest that the virus has peaked for . . .

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The Sandy Next Time

As the water rose 
to occupy Wall Street, 
ten thousand helicopters 
flew massed dollars out 
lest all that cabbage salt to slaw 
and the balance of payments 
blow out to sea. 
 
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Members of the Professional Staff Congress should vote no on the proposed agreement with City University of NY

Editor’s note: Members of the Professional Staff Congress (PSC), the union representing professional staff and faculty at City University of New York (CUNY), are voting on a proposed agreement, a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA)  with CUNY.   The argument to endorse . . .

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In support of the Professional Staff Congress/City University of NY tentative agreement: Vote yes

Editor’s note: Members of the Professional Staff Congress (PSC), the union representing professional staff and faculty at City University of New York (CUNY), are voting on a proposed agreement, a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA)  with CUNY.   In this piece,  Steve . . .

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Richard, We Hardly Knew Ya: A Letter to “The Chief-Leader”

With a new generation of militant radical organizers looking to industrialize into union jobs and kick-start a new militant minority in the U.S. labor movement, their effort is receiving both wide support and wary when not damning criticism. Among the . . .

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Stonewall and the Early Days

The police were pelted with coins and bottles to begin with, by the crowd, and later bricks and stones from a nearby building site. Barricading themselves inside the Stonewall Inn, police were forced to call for assistance. From there on as crowds swelled in numbers over several successive nights, the whole thing escalated into a full blown riot. It took three days and nights before the Tactical Patrol Force, trained to deal with Vietnam war protests, could finally subdue the rioters.

New York City nurses threatened to strike against the Hospital Alliance—and won

But the Fight's Not Over

In late fall of 2018, nurses from five private New York City hospitals in three competing hospital systems delivered their contract proposals to management. Born from a protracted gestation of surveying democratic priorities and tracking experiences with the previous contract, . . .

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A response to an Open Letter from Professional Staff Congress leaders on “$7K or Strike!”

As members of the $7K or Strike Campaign (which includes City University of New York [CUNY] adjuncts, tenure-track/tenured faculty, HEOs, CLTs, students, and other NYC union members) we are deeply disappointed by the March 21, 2019 letter signed by PSC . . .

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New York Progressives Must Demand More

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I campaigned for governor with the slogan of “Demand More!” because Gov. Cuomo has governed as a social liberal but as an economic conservative. Although he touts the agenda he outlined in his January 15 State of the State and Budget presentation as “progressive,” New York progressives should not be satisfied. It is still a conservative economic program. Progressives must demand more.

Why New York City’s teachers should vote “no” on the proposed contract – By Dan Lupkin

ImageNote: While teachers in Los Angeles Unified School District have voted overwhelmingly to authorize a strike, members of the largest teachers union local in the US, the United Federation of Teachers (UFT) in New York City, are debating a proposed contract settlement. In this guest blog, UFT activist Dan Lupkin explains why he wants the proposed contract to be voted down. We invite other opinions on this debate underway in the UFT. – Lois Weiner

The Movement-Building Potential of Socialist Electoral Victories

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On June 26th, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez defeated, against all odds, the incumbent Congressman from New York’s 14th district, a safe Democratic seat, in the party’s primary. Spectacular as it was to see a Democratic political boss (the “King of Queens”) humbled by a left-wing challenger, the real spoils of this victory do not lie in the House seat itself.

Why I Voted Against Endorsing Cynthia Nixon

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The leadership of the New York City chapter of the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) voted this past weekend by a two-thirds majority to endorse Cynthia Nixon in the Democratic Primary race for New York State governor. The decision reflected similar majorities for Nixon among the total membership of the New York City branches. An accompanying motion also passed that linked DSA’s work on the Nixon campaign to the Julia Salazar campaign in the Democratic Primary for State Senate and tied it to our organization’s support for the New York State Health Act and the a city campaign create for expanded rent stabilization.

Since the majority of my fellow New York City socialists voted to endorse Nixon, I feel obligated as a member of the City Leadership Committee  (CLC) to explain to our members why I cast my vote against, as did eleven other members of the 34-member body, while one person abstained.

The 1968 Columbia Rebellion

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— Reprinted from New Politics, vol. VI, no. 3, #23, Summer 1967 (printed June 1968)

At 4 am on April 30 [1968], my wife and I stood with tears streaming down our faces on the corner of Amsterdam Avenue and 117th Street, watching the last of the Fayerweather Hall sit-ins being tossed into waiting police vans. We were not the only ones crying, nor were the tears merely those of pity or self-pity. There was also anger, frustration, and actual joy. The incredible—and inevitable—had happened; the “Big Bust” had come. Seven hundred and twenty student and faculty protesters were under arrest; more than 130 had been beaten up, some quite badly. The last illusions about what was happening were shed.

New York Taxi Drivers: Pushed To Suicide

NYC taxi drivers launch campaign to save their industry following suicides

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Over the past four months, four New York City taxi drivers have been pushed to suicide in an industry that is becoming increasingly dangerous. In response to the recent deaths, the New York Taxi Workers Alliance has launched a campaign for regulation and released its own proposal to re-establish driving as a viable occupation.

UFT shows how Not to protect unions and the public sector

ImageIn its January meeting, after a pro-forma discussion, the Delegate Assembly of the UFT (United Federation of Teachers), which still has the legal right to bargain collectively on behalf of New York City's teachers, voted down a resolution to work with community groups to support Black Lives Matter in the schools in February. LeRoy Barr, UFT's assistant secretary, co-staff director, and Chairperson of the Unity Caucus, gave the UFT leadership's rationale for rejecting the motion. Support for BLM was, he contended, a splinter issue, divisive, at a time when the union had to stay focused on what was key, the Janus decision and the threat to collective bargaining rights.

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