“The progressive, peace, and justice movements face new and difficult conditions in the Trump presidency. Attacks on labor and working people; tax cuts for the rich, sharply increased military spending, and escalated wars and international crises; anti-immigrant and xenophobic rhetoric and policies; escalated racism, sexism, and assaults on LGBTQ people; are among the urgent challenges we face. And as wildfires spread and glaciers melt, the Trump administration is doubling down on policies that guarantee catastrophic climate change.
The far right controls the national and most state governments and is on the offensive on every front. While Democrats may regain control of the House this November, the reactionary forces that have been unleashed and organized by Trumpism are determined to continue their offensive in the years to come, posing serious dangers to living standards and to social justice, as well as to democracy, civil liberties, and our ability to organize for social change.
Fortunately, a new progressive movement has risen to resist Trumpism, exemplified by Black Lives Matter, the 2016 Bernie Sanders campaign and wave of progressive candidates running in 2018, Poor People’s Campaign, Women’s Marches, Fight for $15, March for Our Lives, and the responses to Charlottesville and to the separation of migrant families.
The resistance to the reactionaries is divided between progressives, who seek fundamental changes in the economy and social structure to the benefit of working and oppressed people, and neoliberals and centrists, who seek the stabilization of the corporate order along with continued austerity and militarism. Although we need to join with the centrists to fend off the reactionary assault, we know that they are equally responsible for the extreme income and wealth gaps as well as militarism and war — so we also need to challenge them in order to build a powerful, coherent and energetic progressive movement that will contend for national power in 2020 and in the years to come.
A major weakness of the progressive wing is a tendency to avoid confronting U.S. militarism, particularly the dangers of nuclear war and of war with Iran, Korea, and Russia.
Massachusetts Peace Action, American Friends Service Committee, Black Lives Matter Boston, and the Campaign for Peace, Disarmament, and Common Security invite Massachusetts progressive organizations to join us in organizing a movement building conference to take stock of the political landscape after the midterm election, chart the path towards a unified progressive movement over the coming years, and educate and motivate our supporters towards more effective and more unified efforts.
This conference follows several previous events:
The Next Four Years: Building our Movements in Dangerous Times, December 2016, Simmons College
Building Sustainable Security, November 2015, Harvard Law School
A Foreign Policy for All, November 2014, MIT
Autumn Convergence for a New National Agenda, November 2013, SEIU 32BJ District 615
Registration opens Sept 15.
Contact: Cole Harrison, email@example.com, 617-354-2169 to participate in this effort.” -Massachusetts Peace Action