Freedom Socialist Party reports on its 2014 national convention

From Freedom Socialist Party – socialism.com:
 
FSP 2014 CONVENTION
A world to win, a planet to save
Susan Williams
August 2014

Norma Gallegos (foreground), San Francisco, finds something to smile about while listening intently. Photo: Doug Barnes / FS

From May 24 to 27, U.S. Freedom Socialist Party (FSP) members, friends, and international allies came together in Los Angeles to discuss the economic and environmental disasters threatening humanity — and what to do about them. Just days before, a ruptured pipe had spread 10,000 gallons of oil knee-deep over the streets of an LA neighborhood, underlining the urgency of these questions.

District Council 36 of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) generously donated its headquarters for the convention. Banners calling for open borders, freedom for political prisoners, and queer rights joined the labor posters lining the walls. Participants cheered a gracious and thoughtful welcome by Council 36 President Alice Goff as they settled down to business.

Organizing globally. FSP believes that certain elements are indispensable to a successful fight for socialism: the organization, direction, and power that a revolutionary party can provide; the leadership of women and the oppressed; and international collaboration. Sessions from the first day to the last explored these points, beginning with a keynote talk on the global state of affairs and ending with the election of new party leadership.

A strong red cord of internationalism wound through the convention, which people from six countries attended, including comrades from the FSP section in Australia. Participants were especially thrilled to share the experience with Latin American partners with FSP in the year-old Committee for Revolutionary International Regroupment (CRIR).

A presentation chaired by FSP International Secretary Anne Guerry Hoddersen gave CRIR members a chance to discuss “One Hemisphere Undivided.” Panelists were Marcos Adames for Núcleo por un Partido Revolucionario Internacionalista, Dominican Republic; David Morera for Partido Revolucionario de las Trabajadoras y los Trabajadores, Costa Rica; Cuauhtémoc Ruiz for Partido Obrero Socialista, Mexico; and Stephen Durham for FSP.

One subject they addressed was CRIR’s involvement in the campaign to free Nestora Salgado, unjustly jailed in Mexico for leading a community self-defense force. (See story here.)

Striking a deep chord with FSPers, the CRIR members from Latin America paid tribute to party co-founder Clara Fraser for her pioneering theoretical work on the interrelationship of socialism and feminism. In order to build the revolutionary movement in Mexico and internationally, Ruiz said, “We need many more Clara Frasers and Nestora Salgados, women who will not only join emancipatory movements but who will also lead them.”

Of CRIR itself, Morero said, “CRIR is the embryo of an international party that we dream of, that we need.”

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