Tag Archives: Chicago

Chicago, October 3rd: “We Say Fight Back!” National Conference on Jobs, Income, Housing, and Justice

Click on the image for a PDF flyer for the conference

Click on the image for a PDF flyer for the conference

The following is the call to the “We Say Fight Back” conference, a very important national working class conference that will take place October 3rd in Chicago:

We are now in the midst of the greatest economic downturn since the Great Depression of the 1930’s. Millions of homes are in foreclosure. Unemployment is growing. Massive cuts are taking place to the programs that benefit poor and working people, while the government tries to balance budgets on our backs. Inequality is growing, oppressed people–African-Americans, Chicanos, and Latinos are the last hired and the first to lose their jobs.

The rich and powerful are waging a war on working people and many of us have decided to respond by fighting back. In cities around the country there are sharp struggles to stop evictions and to demand a moratorium on home foreclosures. At places like Chicago’s Republic Windows and Doors there have been intense battles in response to plant closures. From California to New York, people have taken to the streets to protest cuts to programs that serve our communities.

On October 3, 2009, trade unionists, immigrant rights activists and members of low-income, community, housing, student and other progressive organizations will come together in Chicago for a conference that will help build our collective movements. We will take this opportunity to learn from one another’s experience. We will lend support to key struggles. Importantly, we will make common plans. Together we can make a difference and build a more powerful fight back.

Go to the Conference website for a list of endorsers and other important info: http://wesayfightback.com/

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Video: Mass Rally for Gaza in Chicago

Chicago: Protest condemns Israeli massacres in Gaza

The following article is from Fight Back! News:

chicago-palestine-1Chicago: Protest condemns Israeli massacres in Gaza
By Stephanie Weiner

Chicago, IL – 500 people gathered here Dec. 28 for an emergency rally and press conference to condemn the Israeli attacks in the Gaza. The crowd formed a circle around the speakers in front of the Water Tower at noon. The real anger was felt when most of the group moved to the corner to chant at the lone Zionist with an Israeli flag across the street. The militant chanting ranged from, “Free, free Palestine!” to “ End the occupation now!”

The young crowd, almost all wearing Palestinian scarves or carrying flags, called for an end to U.S. money to Israel. They said it most simply in their chant, “Down, down with Israel.” The protesters left with plans to pass on the word about an even larger rally called for this coming Friday afternoon, Jan. 2, at the Tribune Plaza, which is one block from the Israeli Consulate.

Support Republic Window occupation: All out for protest at Bank of America

APTOPIX Workers TakeoverThe following is from Fight Back! News:

Support Republic Window occupation
All out for protest at Bank of America

The workers at Republic Windows and Doors in Chicago are calling on supporters in Chicago to join them at a protest at Bank of America, 231 S. LaSalle today, Wednesday, December 10 at 12:00 noon.

Bank of America has attempted to sow confusion about the state of negotiations. They put out a press release that the dispute between the 260 workers and the company over the unpaid wages, vacation pay and health coverage has been settled. However, the bargaining committee has continued to demand that the company also meet the terms of the WARN Act. In Illinois, the WARN Act requires a company to give 75 days of notice to their employees before closing. Therefore, Republic owes their employees 75 more days of work or 75 more days of pay.

For more information on the rally tomorrow, go to the web site of the United Electrical workers union: http://www.ueunion.org/uenewsupdates.html?news=434

Factory Occupation in Chicago

The following videos and article are from Fight Back! News:

Chicago: Workers occupy plant

By Stephanie Weiner

Chicago, IL – The cafeteria at Republic Windows Factory on the North West side of Chicago was filled with workers tonight, Dec. 5. In a militant action, they have taken over and occupied the block-long building still filled with expensive merchandise and equipment. Continue reading

Fred Hampton on Revolution and the Mass Line

Thanks to D and J for pointing me towards this excellent video where Fred Hampton, Chairman of the Chicago branch of the Black Panther Party, talks about political education, the national question, and the Mass Line. For more on the mass line and what its all about, check out Some Points on the Mass Line by Freedom Road Socialist Organization, as well as the article below.

Fred Hampton – A Fighter for Black Liberation, Revolution and Socialism

By Freedom Road Socialist Organization

“You can kill a revolutionary but you can’t kill revolution…you can jail a liberator but you can’t jail liberation.” -Fred Hampton

Fred Hampton is a hero in the struggle for Black liberation, revolution and socialism. He should be remembered and his example should be followed by all progressive and revolutionary people. Hampton was the Deputy Chairman from the Illinois branch of the Black Panther Party. He was one of the most dynamic leaders in the Black Panther Party nationally until he was cut down in cold blood by the government at the age of 21.

On Dec. 4, 1969 Fred Hampton was assassinated while sleeping in his bed by a tactical unit of the Cook County, Illinois State’s Attorney’s Office, in conjunction with the Chicago Police Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Fellow Black Panther Mark Clark was also assassinated that night. The murder of Hampton and Clark was part of the FBI’s plan to disrupt and neutralize the Black liberation movement and the Black Panther Party specifically.

Despite his young age, Fred Hampton made tremendous contributions to the movement for black liberation, working class revolution and socialism in the U.S. His example still shines and inspires people fighting for change almost 40 years later.

What Did Fred Hampton Do?

Fred Hampton was born in 1948 in Chicago, Illinois and grew up in nearby Maywood. While a teenager he got involved in the NAACP and his leadership abilities quickly became clear as he led campaigns to improve services in the Black community. When the Black Panther Party became established in Illinois, Hampton joined in 1968 and became a Party leader. Continue reading

Chicago Soccer Fans Launch Counter-attack Against Racism

I spent a couple of months in Chicago working on a trade union campaign a while back. While I was there I went to a few Chicago Fire MLS futbol matches (some live at Toyota Park and a few at the Globe Pub) and participated in Section 8 with the Partisans. Section 8 is a pretty militant independent supporters association (ISA), and it was a pleasure to be a part of it, if only briefly. I’m excited to see this article about an action from Section 8 on August 16th to unite and fight back against racist attacks against one of its member groups, Sector Latino. A statement on the Section 8 website says, “We will allow the club time to react and open dialogue after Saturday, Aug. 16th. If no movement occurs before the next home match, we will continue with an escalating series of protest actions.”

Chicago Soccer Fans Launch Counter-attack Against Racism

Fire - Stop The Racism

Fire - Stop The Racism

Fight Back! News: Bridgeview, IL Fans of the Chicago Fire major league soccer team sent the team owners a message that the fans will not tolerate racism from security guards towards Latino fans. Sector Latino is a Chicago Fire supporter group which is made up primarily of Mexican youth. Since their founding in 2005, they have been treated differently than the other supporter groups at Toyota Park, the home stadium of the Fire. They’ve complained of aggressive searches and being followed around the stadium by security guards.

At the last home game the team sold tickets to families for a section which is normally reserved for the supporter groups, who generally stand and cheer the whole game. The families attempted to sit in the standing section. Security responded by sending the Sector Latino out of their section, in which they are season ticket holders, to accommodate the mistake on the part of the team. During this incident, Sector members were called “wetbacks” and “spics” by the security guards. The guards also attempted to provoke fights with the youth.

The organized fans of the Chicago Fire are part of an Independent Supporters Association called Section 8. The leadership from the various groups held a meeting to form a response to the harassment. Previous meetings about the problems with Fire management and the park produced no results. Continue reading