The Jeanne Gauna Liberation Award: for those who hear the sounds of liberation and feel the heartbeat of change.
SouthWest Organizing ProjectPrepared remarks (sorry, no teleprompter at the event so I had to wing it :)
Esperanza Peace and Justice Center
Community Voices Heard
Southwest Network for Environmental and Economic Justice
Grassroots Global Justice
...It’s an honor to be here this evening to celebrate 20 years of grassroots victory. Congratulations Southwest Workers Union leadership, members and family.
What can I say about SWU? I’m always inspired by SWU’s dedication and commitment. And I’m always inspired by their unabashed, unashamed politics. Yes they wear their politics, sometimes literally, on their sleeves. It’s a politics of strategy and vision. It’s a working class intellectual politics. It’s a politics grounded in the community. But that’s not all, SWU doesn’t just wear their politics on their sleeves, they also wear their heart on their sleeves.
And one thing’s for sure, they’re always timely and relevant. They pushed us to join them at the Border Social Forum. They challenged us to step up and go down on the Gulf Coast Solidarity and Justice Tour. They put their blood, sweat, tears and brains into the US Social Forum and the Peoples Freedom Caravan, and they represent our movement all around the world.
And now they bring us all here tonight.
We live in an unprecedented defining moment in history. We are experiencing a generational and demographic change/transition at a scale here to before unseen in the United States. We are becoming a younger, darker country…and world.
A man named Barack Obama is President of the United States.
Yet we’ve been left with climate, moral and economic crises of epic proportions.
Our challenge at this particular time is not only to hold those in power accountable to the people. But rather, it’s to set the agenda, take power and govern for ourselves.
I have no doubt in our potential.
We’ve had enough.
We CAN do it.
Another Americas, another world, is possible.