This is cross-posted from Levins Publishing.
Written by Dr. Richard Levins
Why would anyone working person be hopeful in these bleak times for politics and the economy? I sometimes have a tough time with that question, but not today. My friend Stewart Acuff is in town. His visit gave me a chance to see him and several of my local friends in the labor movement. Seeing so many good people in such a short period of time was inspiring, to say the least.
read from his new book, Playing Bigger Than You Are: A Life in Organizing, on several occasions during his visit. He reminded us of words we don’t hear often enough as we struggle for a better America. He talked of justice, of power, and of hope. There is no substitute for seeing Stewart Acuff in person. The best I can do is let you read something he read out loud with the passion that is Stewart Acuff’s trademark:
”We organize to give people a voice.
We organize people no one has listened to and give them a voice everyone has to hear.
We organize for a place at the table of decisions.
We organize to make the city council or the CEO take notice.
We organize for the common good.
We organize for those things that make all of our lives better.
We talk about the stop sign to slow down speeders and make the streets safer for our kids.
We organize to make the job less difficult or dreary or dangerous.
We organize for power.
We know that the only source of power for us is collective power, the power of our numbers.
We organize because we’ve learned that power goes either to the Financial Elite or to average folks who’ve joined forces with one another.
We organize for justice for all Americans.
We take our place in the lineage of those who worked with Tom Paine and Sam Adams during our struggle for national independence, with Frederick Douglass and Sojourner Truth in their fight to rid the country of slavery, with Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton to win the right to vote for women, and with Dr. King and Rev. Jackson to rid the country of racial segregation.
I tell you how I played my part in Playing Bigger Than You Are: A Life in Organizing. Now it’s your turn.
Hasta la Victoria!”
Please help get the word out on Stewart’s new book. We need a hopeful message now more than ever.
Stewart Acuff is America’s best-known and foremost labor organizer. He is the former organizing Director of the AFL-CIO. Acuff has also written two books: Playing Bigger Than You Are: A Life in Organizing, and Getting America Back to Work, coauthored by Dr. Richard Levins.Tags: acuff, AFL-CIO, aflcio, dr martin luther king jr, dr richard levins, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Frederick Douglass, hope, jesse jackson, levins, levins publishing, Martin Luther King Jr., mlk, mlk jr, news, Playing BIgger Than You Are, Playing Bigger Than You Are: A Life in Organizing, prounion, sam adams, Sojourner Truth, stewart acuff, stewartacuff, thomas paine, Union, union jobs, uwua