Great news! Frances Fox Piven and Cornel West have organized a National Teach-In for Tuesday afternoon, April 5. The theme is “On Austerity, Debt, Corporate Greed and How to Fight Back.” Progressive luminaries such as Jeffrey Sachs, Heather McGhee, and Richard Trumka will be on hand. The event will be live-streamed over the Internet from 2:00 PM to 3:30 PM, after which local groups are encouraged to continue the discussion. For more information on organizing a group or simply tuning in yourself, visit www.fightbackteachin.org. It throws me back to the Sixties to see that the program will originate from Judson Memorial Church on Washington Square, where the Rev. Howard Moody and his assistant, Al Carmine, both of whom were in the forefront of the struggle for gay rights and a woman’s right to chose, once held forth and led the charge.
This national teach-in is such good news because it revives a tactic that was used to great effect during the Vietnam War. I do not believe the public is stupid; it’s uninformed and misinformed, and the corrective is education. And teach-ins can be an effective educational tool. Of course, the danger persists that events such as this teach-in will amount to little more than preaching to the choir. It’s up to us, therefore, to maintain our vigilance and do our part to shine a light on the existing system of things until, finally, everybody knows how it operates.
Appropriately, today’s (r)evolutionary music clip features “Everybody Knows” by Leonard Cohen