Wednesday, September 17, 2014

An ICEer Comments on the Sharpton March

Judging an organization's commitment to social justice on the basis of how they stand on a demo called by one of the most dishonest people on the face of the earth is absurd... A member of ICE
With lots of back and forth inside MORE over MORE's ambiguity on the Eric Garner march, one of the founders of ICE, who has not taken part in anything related to MORE, commented off-list on the debate. He was a long-time activist and chapter leader in Bed-Stuy from the 60s through the 80s - a left winger with a strong anti-capitalist and anti-racist history, working with local community activists in District 16. I'm making this point to counter people who are branding opponents of the march as coming from the right. I would say about half the people in ICE were not in favor of endorsing the march and it was in consideration of their point of view that led to some of the ambiguity in the MORE statement as Julie tried to take their views into account when writing the statement.

I'm sure he has no problem in my using his name but I want to make sure, so I am posting now and will update with his name when I reach him.

Who calls for a march or demo is always an important question in the decision of whether to support it or not. Judging an organizations commitment to social justice on the basis of how they stand on a demo called by one of the most dishonest people on the face of the earth is absurd....

But for us a march in support of civil rights, in the context of what's happening nationally with rising police misconduct, is something that we should be in solidarity with without question....

The march that Sharpton called was clearly in response to what happened in Staten Island and that's why it was held there. It was called even before the events in Missouri. Why were none of these marches called by Sharpton and his cronies during the Bloomberg era - especially with all of the stuff going on with stop and frisk? Why was the march held in Staten Island, making it difficult to get to? Why not hold the march in Manhattan if they really wanted people to come out? Why didn't the UFT members, or even much of the Unity Caucus come out?

As for being in solidarity with the march without question, who are they kidding? 

Who calls for a march or demo is always an important question in the decision of whether to support it or not. Judging an organization's commitment to social justice on the basis of how they stand on a demo called by one of the most dishonest people on the face of the earth is absurd. 

Much of the opposition to the march did not center the issue of police brutality but on the fact that the central player was Sharpton.

3 comments:

  1. I can understand the ICEers viewpoint. I'm a member of MORE and decided that it was the right thing to change MORE's original statement with full respect for the work that Julie and others did. I fully recognize who Mr. Sharpton is but I think that in this case the need to be present and to endorse the intent of the march superseded the concerns about the sponsor. I have participated in many rallies, marches and demonstrations when I did not agree with all or even many of the sponsors but because I thought the purpose was important. I was able to get over the Sharpton participation.

    This thing is now almost over a month. I hope that we can all agree to disagree on the march and move on. If I never hear about the march again in my entire life that would be absolutely fine with me.

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  2. As a UFT member, living and working on Staten Island, I was in support of the cause of social justice, and would have hardly been inconvenienced by attending the demo. However, I was unwilling to attend, inasmuch as I would be marching with Sharpton and Mulgrew, two equally detestable opportunists. I'm fairly certain these feelings are shared by many of my colleagues, helping to explain the low turnout.

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  3. I wouldn't march with Sharpton or Mulgrew if I was starving and they had the last piece of bread. Sharpton was bought by BloomKlein while Mulgrew hid under his covers. Neither of them deserve respect or support. I received a text from a colleague who was outraged over the alliance and my response was simple..." Does it matter? Do you really need another reason to hate Mulgrew's UFT? I don't." This has nothing to do with my stance on social justice--- the author Norm quoted said it best, "Judging an organization's commitment to social justice on the basis of how they stand on a demo called by one of the most dishonest people on the face of the earth is absurd." Roseanne McCosh

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