A Crossroads for Socialism
Cuba in Transition (Introduction)
By Nicholas Partyka
Given the coverage (or maybe, more correctly, the lack thereof) of Cuba in the US media today one might be forgiven for offering the following as mildly shocking news to some readers; the Cuban revolution has not been defeated, and it is not over. Cuba garners little attention in the US media, and has for some time been something of an off-the-radar topic in US foreign policy discussion; save perhaps a few perfunctory lines in a party platform every four years. The times when Cuba does grab attention are either in the role of foil for US espionage, aka "development" efforts (see the recent ZunZuneo case), or as "a rouge state run by a power-mad tyrant" (see the case of the North Korean-owned and bound ship loaded with Cuban ex-Soviet weaponry and sugar). In light of this context, it seems like Cuba today is mainly forgotten by the American public, hostage to a few extremists in congress, and an easy target for politicians scoring political points. The public might have this misconception that the Cuban revolution has failed, and that its transformative project has run its course; and most would likely believe that it has little to show for itself after fifty plus years.
The Revolutionary Potential of Social Media
Online Activism and Organizing
By Devon Douglas-Bowers
Social media is used 24/7, 365. From desktop computers and laptops to apps for Iphones, we are constantly inundated with information about the lives of our friends and associates, and the lives of celebrities. Generally speaking, it seems that social media is mainly used to engage in and promote self-aggrandizing activity. Unfortunately, due to this saturation of navel gazing, many ignore how social media can be, and is being, used in a revolutionary fashion. Due to the lack of minorities and women in mainstream media, in terms of both ownership and representation, marginalized groups have turned to the internet as a way to get out their message and their version of events. Social media is often the place to do this. The use of social media to create safe spaces and dialogue among marginalized people can be seen in pages like "Black Girl Dangerous (BGD)". BGD, according to their website, "seeks to, in as many ways possible, amplify the voices, experiences and expressions of queer and trans* people of color." They have featured numerous articles from..
The Unredeemable Criminal Black Man?
By Dr. Jason Michael Williams
With Michael Vick recently being signed by the New York Jets, I could not help but to scroll through the many hate-filled responses by those on social media, particularly the ones posted on Facebook. Sadly, the admonishment of Vick after he has paid his debt to society in the form of prison time, community service, and monetary restitution is clearly indicative of him being forever labeled an animal abuser and, therefore, locked out of normalcy. Certainly his celebrity complicates the matter, for it makes him an easy and memorable target for what is clearly subconscious and conscious racial condemnation! I made a comment on Facebook stating, "Dogs and other animals are more sacred than Black and Brown bodies dying in the streets of Chicago." I made this comment because I have yet to see the uproars against the senseless murders happening every day in America's inner cities, yet when an animal is abused it is everyone to its rescue. As a disclaimer, I do not support the abuse or killing of animals; however, I do see a qualitative difference worth noting and that is the purpose of this article.
Gauging Organized Labor
An Interview with Staughton Lynd
By Andy Piascik
For more than 50 years, Staughton Lynd has been a leading radical in the United States. He was an engaged supporter of the Black Liberation Movement in the Deep South in the early 1960s, most notably as coordinator of the Freedom Schools during Mississippi Summer in 1964. He was an active opponent of US aggression in Indochina, including as chairperson of the first national demonstration against the war in Vietnam in April 1965. In recent decades, Lynd has been an attorney representing prisoners, particularly at the Ohio State Penitentiary in Youngstown, and has written a book, a play and numerous articles about the 1993 uprising at the Southern Ohio Correctional Facility in Lucasville. Since the late 1960s, Lynd has also been deeply involved in the labor movement as an activist, attorney and prolific writer. Inspired by Marty Glaberman, Stan Weir and Ed Mann, Lynd has been a passionate and prolific proponent of decentralized, rank-and-file driven unionism. In November 2014, Haymarket Books will publish a book by Lynd entitled Doing History from the Bottom Up..