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Vol. 81/No. 35      September 25, 2017

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Join SWP in drive for ‘Militant,’ books, fund

The Socialist Workers Party is launching its nine-week fall circulation and fund drives Sept. 16. The drives will aid party members and supporters across the country in expanding the readership of the Militant and books by SWP leaders. They’re also mapping out plans to raise $100,000 for the ongoing work of the party. The next issue of the Militant will include charts with quotas taken by local party units.

In addition to branches of the SWP, members of the Communist Leagues in Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the United Kingdom will be joining the circulation effort.

At the heart of these plans is knocking on workers’ doors in cities, towns and rural areas. Party members will discuss the unprecedented political and economic crisis in the U.S., its origins and the only serious answer — for independent working-class political action to take political power out of the hands of the ruling rich and reorganize society in the interests of the toiling majority.

In Colorado, SWP member Alyson Kennedy says party members there are planning a team to Rifle, a ranching region several hours from Denver, where they will introduce the party to ranchers fighting to defend their livelihood and their right to stay on the land.

In Vancouver, British Columbia, members of the Communist League are organizing a team to Vancouver Island to talk to working people about the impact of layoffs that have hit production workers in the lumber industry there. They are also planning a return trip to the areas of the province that have been hard hit by wildfires and discuss with workers the refusal of the government to organize to defend their homes and jobs.

Party members and supporters in Seattle went to Central Washington to support apple workers on strike at Larson Orchards over abusive working conditions. After talking to strikers on the picket line, we went door to door in Quincy, discussing the issues in the strike and building solidarity with the apple workers, introducing the party and its books and papers.

One woman named Norma, who works in a corn-canning factory, was attracted to the “Amnesty for Immigrants” headline in the Militant. “I have a friend who is 80 years old and still has to work to live, because he wasn’t born here and has no Social Security,” she told me. “I also have a lot of friends in the apple picking work who I think would like to see this paper.” We told her that the party fights for amnesty, to stop the deportations and to organize the unorganized — demands to unify the working class.

She got a copy and took a sub blank to send in. Party members plan to get back to this area, and take her up on her offer to help introduce us to more people who work in the orchards.

Seth Galinsky in New York reported how party members campaigned in defense of the Cuban Revolution last week at a concert in Central Park by Cuban musician Silvio Rodríguez. They held up signs that included “U.S. Out of Guantánamo” and “End the Embargo,” speaking to hundreds of people queued up to get into the concert. They showed them the Militant and the five books on special with a subscription — Are They Rich Because They’re Smart?, The Clintons’ Anti-Working-Class Record and Malcolm X, Black Liberation, and the Road to Workers Power, all three by SWP National Secretary Jack Barnes; Is Socialist Revolution in the US Possible? by SWP leader Mary-Alice Waters; and “It’s the Poor Who Face the Savagery of the US ‘Justice’ System”: The Cuban Five Talk About Their Lives Within the US Working Class, as well as other books by leaders of the Cuban Revolution.

Some people said they were glad to see the SWP there, others said they came for the music but opposed the Cuban Revolution. Many wanted to talk politics. By the end of the evening, nine introductory subscriptions, 27 single copies of the paper and 12 books on working-class politics had been purchased by concert goers, who also donated $32.

Lisa Potash, SWP candidate for Atlanta mayor, wrote that party members campaigned in downtown Decatur at a rally of more than 200 people opposing a Confederate monument there. Salihah Ife, a bartender at the rally with her children, got a copy of the paper and said she would like to get Malcolm X, Black Liberation, and the Road to Workers Power and First and Second Declarations of Havana. Deronte Austin, a landscaping worker, signed up for a subscription to the paper and picked up “It’s the Poor Who Face the Savagery of the US ‘Justice’ System.”

If you would like to join in the party’s drive to expand the reach of the Militant and books on revolutionary politics, contact the nearest SWP branch, listed on page 8.  
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