Visionary Organizing

Grace Lee Boggs’ message to Occupy Wall Street from American Revolutionary.

At the age of 96, Chinese American grassroots activist, organizer, philosopher and author Grace Lee Boggs has more than seven decades of experience in Civil Rights activism, the Black Power movement, feminism, labor rights, Asian American rights, and environmental and food justice. Boggs, along with her husband and fellow activist, James Boggs, founded Detroit Summer — a multiracial, inter-generational collective based in Detroit. This collective has been working to transform communities through youth leadership, creativity and collective action for over 20 years.

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Visionary Organizing

Grace Lee Boggs’ message to Occupy Wall Street from American Revolutionary.

At the age of 96, Chinese American grassroots activist, organizer, philosopher and author Grace Lee Boggs has more than seven decades of experience in Civil Rights activism, the Black Power movement, feminism, labor rights, Asian American rights, and environmental and food justice. Boggs, along with her husband and fellow activist, James Boggs, founded Detroit Summer — a multiracial, inter-generational collective based in Detroit. This collective has been working to transform communities through youth leadership, creativity and collective action for over 20 years.

(more…)

Working Beyond Borders

BAJI

Photo courtesy of Black Alliance for Just Immigration

Happy May Day!

I hope you’ll join us in celebrating the contributions that all kinds of laborers make to the world’s wealth, stability and health.

May Day is a special opportunity to express your support for the human rights and just treatment of the many people who have immigrated to your country to work and to live. Although mainstream media outlets often represent the face of immigration as indigenous and Mexican or Central American, since the mid-twentieth century millions of Black people from Africa, the Caribbean and Latin America have joined national communities like the United States, Great Britain, France, Germany and the Netherlands. This month, we will try to illuminate how immigrants’ rights are workers’ rights and an international Black issue.

The freedom to migrate was enabled by social movements that challenged race-based exclusionary immigration policies. However, a great deal of work remains to be done in order to lift the stigma our society places on recent and not-so-recent arrivals to the United States. In the classroom, I have been moved by some of my students’ admitted insecurities about their undocumented status, their family’s struggles to adjust to the American economy and culture as well as their physical and emotional distance from extended kinfolk. Fortunately, there is a powerful student movement that is fighting for the passage of the DREAM Act and many organizations like the National Domestic Workers’ Alliance and Black Alliance for Just Immigration are successfully advocating for better labor conditions.

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