a love letter to the radical left

Dear Radical Left,

I love you.  Okay, okay, don’t roll your eyes or get all overly mushy.  It’s cool.  But I do love you; we’ve been together a long time.  Still, I have to be honest with you: you’re a hot mess right now.  And that happens… to all of us.  But I think it’s time – past time really – to turn it around.  

I look back on your life and all the wonderful moments – moments that we shared and those that came before we met.  

So many moments of rebellion and creation, tearing down old oppressive institutions and building new ways of living in this world.  Together, we saved forests and created autonomous zones; we shook the corporate trade mechanisms to their very knees, we dismantled borders and walked across their false lines in the sand.  We’ve attacked racism, attacked its police, we’ve fed everyone who showed up and taught men how to clean up.  We’ve stood in solidarity as the world around us rose up in rebellion after rebellion, in protest, in refusal.

We’ve held each other, cried together, fought together, locked down, shut down, occupied and questioned it all.  We’ve come together in the 10s of thousands and also in few, in small groups of affinity.  We’ve been wrong, we’ve made mistakes but we’ve woken up to live and build and love another day.  We’ve been our best and our world selves; we’ve always just wanted something better.  

A world without capitalism, without borders or prisons or poverty or pain.  We’ve fought for the freedom of our comrades and broke free our planet and the animals on it from their very literal bonds.  We’ve done it ourselves, we’ve lived outside while we railed against from within.  We’ve done a lot together and won many small battles if never the war.

But you are quiet now.  Do not misunderstand.  I mean no disrespect. I know that there are still moments, there are pockets of amazing work – I know it’s happening.  Even that, though, feels small, scattered, isolated.  We are not in movement.  We have no common world we are building.  We are not strong.  And we are running out of time.  We face the unbelievably fast approaching precipice of climate change.  We face a rising fascism around much of the globe.  We face never-ending war, ever expanding empire, austerity, species extinction and the list goes on.  Unchecked global capitalism is driving us beyond the point of survival.

And YOU – WE together – are the best hope for a better tomorrow.  So, I write this love letter to you, radical Left, because I love you enough to do my part to support you in pulling yourself back together, building yourself back up.  You are needed more than ever.  It’s time to rise.  Let’s go.  

 

in struggle; in resistance; in collective, creative, courageous rebuilding,

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