Front Page

Open Letter to the People of the United States – from Puerto Rico, a month after Hurricane María

Manuel Rodríguez Banchs and Rafael Bernabe
Nov 4, 2017
DEAR FRIENDS:

By now you have surely heard about the catastrophic impact of Hurricane María in Puerto Rico, as well as the slow and still inadequate response by U.S. federal agencies, such as FEMA.

A month after María, dozens of communities are still inaccessible by car or truck. Close to 90 percent of all homes lack electricity. Half lack running water. Many of Puerto Rico’s 3.2 million residents have difficulties obtaining drinking water. The death toll continues to rise due to lack of medical attention or materials (oxygen, dialysis) or from poisoning caused by unsafe water.

The failures of U.S. agencies might come as no surprise, since the federal response (including FEMA’s) to other disasters, such as for Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans, was as slow and inadequate. You may have also heard President Trump state that Puerto Rico was dealing with a debt crisis before the hurricane and that its electric grid had been allowed to deteriorate. As far as they go, these statements are true.

But President Trump also tweeted suggestions that Puerto Rican workers are lazy and that FEMA and other agencies cannot remain in Puerto Rico forever. This spins the notion that Puerto Ricans are themselves to blame and should not expect any more handouts. Trump aims to build a wall between us, which doesn’t come as much of a surprise either, by portraying us as a burden, as illegitimately claiming resources to which we have no right.

Through the media you may have also heard that Puerto Ricans are U.S. citizens as well as a nation, a people with its own identity and culture, under U.S. colonial rule since 1898. Sometimes...

Dilemmas of Electoral Politics: The Working Families Party and the Greens in New York State

October 29, 2017

The US Left has long struggled with the problem of doing electoral politics in a “winner-take-all” voting system and has long debated how to relate to the Democratic Party and especially to the campaigns of progressive Democratic Party candidates.

This strategic question is especially pressing in states, like New York, that allow “fusion” balloting. In New York State, individual candidates may be endorsed by and run as the candidate of more than one party.

The Working Families Party organizes issue campaigns and also runs candidates for office, often endorsing Democrats who appear on the ballot as candidates also for the Working Families Party. The Green Party in New York State will not utilize fusion to cross-endorse Democrats. The Greens run their own candidates for statewide as well as local office.

In January 2017, Stephanie Luce, published an article on Medium assessing the role of the Working Families Party—along with grassroots mobilizations—in moving Governor Andrew Cuomo of New York to the left. Solidarity asked her permission to republish and also invited Howie Hawkins to comment. We are pleased to publish these two thoughtful pieces.
How to Make a Corporate Democrat Govern as a Progressive (at least some of the time): Andrew Cuomo, Zephyr Teachout, Bernie Sanders and the Working Families Party by Stephanie Luce

Progressive Democrats Have Little Power Without an Independent Left by Howie Hawkins

Declaration of the Fourth International on the current events in Catalonia

from the Executive Bureau of the Fourth International
September 21, 2017

On 20 September 2017, the Civil Guard and the Spanish National Police arrested 14 senior officials of the Generalitat (the Catalan government) and carried out 40 searches of public buildings and private homes. A police operation then seized propaganda material of the CUP (Candidatura de Unidad Popular, the main party of the pro-independence left) and, without any legal authorisation, surrounded its headquarters for the whole day, for no reason other than provocation. Following the prosecution of more than 700 Catalan mayors who support the referendum on October 1st and after repeated complaints against the Catalan Parliament’s Bureau, yesterday’s actions represent a qualitative leap in the repressive escalation of Spanish state institutions against the referendum on self-determination.

At the moment, the Catalan government is maintaining the call for the referendum on 1 October although in previously the Civil Guard also seized electoral propaganda, ballot papers and census letters in printing presses and newspapers throughout Catalonia.

The escalating repression of the Spanish state, preceded by the so-called “gag law” (which has already severely curtailed democratic rights ...

Defend DACA and Demand Justice for All Migrants

from the National Committee of Solidarity
September 7, 2017

The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program was established by an executive order from President Obama in June 2012. Far from a gift from a sympathetic administration, DACA was a victory won only through the brave and militant actions of undocumented activists who were willing to criticize the devastating immigration policies of a supposedly progressive President, including by occupying Obama campaign offices.

Tuesday morning, a new administration that nobody could mistake as progressive announced the phasing out of the program. The impact of this cruel decision will be widely felt and will bring a renewed threat of deportation to hundreds of thousands of young people, including many key organizers in the movement for migrant justice.

We must fight this racist attack tooth and nail, and fight for the right of all immigrants to live and work freely, regardless of their status or DACA eligibility. But to do this we need to learn the lessons of how DACA and other victories were won to begin with: through the willingness of radical and militant segments of undocumented people, many of them indigenous and/or queer, to challenge politicians of all parties and make the radical demand of #Not1More deportation.

Nov 4, 2017
Manuel Rodríguez Banchs and Rafael Bernabe
DEAR FRIENDS:
By now you have surely heard about the catastrophic impact of Hurricane María in Puerto Rico, as well as the slow and still inadequate response by U.S. federal agencies, such as FEMA.
A...
October 29, 2017
The US Left has long struggled with the problem of doing electoral politics in a “winner-take-all” voting system and has long debated how to relate to the Democratic Party and especially to the...
September 21, 2017
from the Executive Bureau of the Fourth International
On 20 September 2017, the Civil Guard and the Spanish National Police arrested 14 senior officials of the Generalitat (the Catalan government) and carried out 40 searches of public buildings and...
September 7, 2017
from the National Committee of Solidarity
The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program was established by an executive order from President Obama in June 2012. Far from a gift from a sympathetic administration, DACA was a victory...

All featured articles

November 5, 2017
Steve Bloom
1917 Petrograd Soviet Assembly
READ THE POEM HERE
Steve Bloom is a member of Solidarity.
October 29, 2017
Stephanie Luce
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo was first elected in 2010. Early in his tenure, and no doubt in response to that year’s Tea Party wave, he quickly distinguished himself as an aggressive and effective...
October 29, 2017
Howie Hawkins
Howie Hawkins is the Green Party Candidate for Mayor of Syracuse NY. For information about his campaign, visit his website.
Stephanie Luce asks why did Cuomo shift leftward after the 2014...
October 5, 2017
Rafael Bernabe
Crises raise new, sharp problems that unveil and accentuate both the admirable and the negative aspects of the societies they affect. They also pose new tasks and offer new perspectives on already...
October 5, 2017
by Silvia Brandon-Pérez
Cuba y Puerto Rico son
de un pájaro las dos alas,
reciben flores o balas
sobre el mismo corazón…
-Lolita Rodríguez de Tió
We are living in the end times, not as in the Biblical end times, but...

All recent articles