Bringing the Militant to broad layers of working people where they live is at the heart of the communist movement’s response to changing attitudes among working people under the cumulative impact of the capitalist crisis. What supporters of the Militant have found is a growing interest in a communist explanation of the roots of the capitalist crisis and the source of the bosses’ unrelenting attacks, as well as a growing openness to discuss a class-struggle perspective to meet these attacks and the need for a revolutionary struggle for a workers and farmers government.
John Naubert reported that a team of Militant supporters from Seattle went to Yakima, Wash., to visit with Militant subscribers and go door to door with the paper.
The team went back to Christina Faria, 24, who is a flagger on road worksites. She said she likes the Militant and bought Women and Revolution: The Living Example of the Cuban Revolution The book is one of eight titles offered at reduced prices with a subscription.
“It’s important to talk about things other than what the big media says. People have lost lives to make things better,” Faria said.
Seattle readers also went back to the picket line of Teamsters Local 117 at United Natural Foods Inc., in Auburn, Wash., before the workers ended their nine-week strike with a settlement that includes the reinstatement of all fired workers and wage increases.
“I can see how they use brainwashing to convince us it’s OK if you are poor to accept the risk of living on the lowlands,” Militant subscriber and shop steward Robert Jury, 38, said. A forklift driver and stocker, he had read a story on Hurricane Sandy in a back issue of the paper.
After talking about the history of the Teamsters union, he bought a copy of Teamster Rebellion by Farrell Dobbs. The book tells the story of the militant 1934 strikes that built the industrial union movement in Minneapolis and helped pave the way for the CIO.
Dobbs was a central leader of that battle and the Socialist Workers Party.
“Supporters of the Militant here got off to a good start the first weekend of the subscription campaign,” wrote Naomi Craine from Miami.
“We sold nine subscriptions going door to door, along with two copies each of Cuba and Angola: Fighting for Africa’s Freedom and Our Own and Women and Revolution: The Living Example of the Cuban Revolution.”
“One of the new subscribers works in a cement factory,” Craine added. “He took a few extra copies of the paper and some subscription blanks to show to his fellow workers, saying, ‘That way, they won’t take my copy.’”
“I saw this paper when my friend’s father, John Collado, was killed by the cops,” said Marcus Reyes, 27, when Militant supporters knocked on his door in Upper Manhattan Feb. 10.
Collado was shot by a plainclothes cop in September 2011 as he attempted to intervene in what witnesses said appeared to be an assault on his neighbor. Some 250 family members and supporters demonstrated a few days later, demanding that the cop be arrested and charged.
Reyes bought a single copy of the paper, saying, “It’s very informative. It lets us know we are not the only ones around the world facing the same issues.”
“I’m getting the paper because I’m interested in the cause. I want to put my shoulder to the wheel to fight injustice,” said Lucie Ngoie in Verdun, a working-class neighborhood of Montreal, as she bought a subscription from Militant supporters who met her as she was doing laundry in her apartment building.
Ngoie used to be a union activist in Lubumbashi, Democratic Republic of the Congo. She now works as a personal support worker in a retirement home.
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