10/20 - Combating the Rightward Shift in Mainstream Politics

This Wed we are bringing a special guest speaker to campus, NYC activist Jennifer Roesch, for a meeting to discuss why the Right-wing has made political gains in this country, debunk the idea that they represent some silenced majority, and most importantly discuss how we can fight back, rebuild the left and win true justice.

The right-wing attack machine—from Fox News to the crusaders of the Christian Right—is on the warpath, supremely confident that they can get away with anything, from blocking the construction of a religious center in New York City to appropriating the iconic image of Martin Luther King speaking at the Lincoln Memorial for a right-wing circus presided over by Glenn Beck.

And if this wasn't enough, we've seen a recent spate gay teen suicides and increase in violent attacks against gay people  due in large part to the Anti-LGBT bigotry coming from voices of authority.
Carl Paladino, the Tea Party, and even the Democrats are creating hate filled environment where people feel justified in victimizing people suspected of being gay and teens feel they have noting to live for. Read more on this issue in the follow Socialistworker.org articles

Causes of a horrifying crime The nightmarish assault committed against four men in New York City earlier this month follows several other recent anti-gay attacks, reports Jake Kornegay.

Coming out and ending bigotry
I am coming out completely today because I am one of the lucky ones. I'm still here, and it got better.

Vigils commemorate LGBT youth
Across the U.S., candlelight vigils drew hundreds to mourn the suicides of LGBT youth subjected to harassment and bullying.
If people in positions of power want to honor Tyler Clementi, let them start by passing legislation guaranteeing full federal equality for all LGBT people.

This meeting coincides with two other great events to show solidarity against bigotry -- opportunities for the left to stand united in solidarity against the bigoted hate that has lead to teen suicides, and the inaction of the democrats in actually granting meaningful rights to gay people (more info on all events below).

UW: It Gets Better Vigil to commemorate the gay teen suicide victims 
Die-in at President Obama's Speech

So if you're frustrated that there is no voice in mainstream political discourse for those who stand against homophobia, war, racism, and all of the injustices in this country - then come discuss how we can rebuild the left with Jennifer Roesch, then put those idea immediately into action with the UW: It Gets Better Vigil to commemorate the gay teen suicide victims immediately after the meeting at 8pm, and the Die-in to protest President Obama and Senator Patty Murray on Thursday.

WED 6:30 pm, Savery 139
Jennifer Rosche: The Right Turn in U.S. Politics, How it Happened and What We Can Do About It
Come discuss how we can fight the right and build a real left-wing alternative with Special Guest speaker Jennifer Roesch, a longtime activist and member of the ISO in New York City. She is on the editorial board of the International Socialist Review. Her articles have been featured in the ISR as well as CounterPunch and Socialist Worker.

WED 8:00 pm, Red Square
UW's It Gets Better Vigil
to commemorate LGBTQ youth suicide victims
SOLE (Students Organizing for LGBTQ Equality) is organizing a candlelight vigil with an "it gets better" photo slide show. LGBTQ youth are four times as likely to commit suicide as their straight peers because of the harassment and rejection they face. Join the thousands of people wearing purple and attend the vigil to remember and mourn for Tyler Clementi, Asher Brown, Seth Walsh, Justin Aaberg, Raymond Chase and Billy Lucas, gay youths who committed suicide because of the bullying and outing they suffered.

THUSDAY 12pm, Outside the Hec Edmundson Pavilion
Die-in for Gay Rights outside President Obama's speech
President Obama is coming to Seattle on October 21st to campaign for Senator Patty Murray. Both Obama and Murray have been supportive, however neither of them have shown leadership or courage on queer rights issues. Patty Murray didn't have a statement released on Don't Ask Don't Tell until a couple days before the vote in the House. This is a 17 year-old issue and she's campaigning for her 4th term. While she's voted the right way (at least lately, she voted in favor of DOMA a while back) her lack of courage to stand up for such an important issue is shameful. Likewise, Obama has promised to be a "fierce advocate" while continuing to sit there and twiddle his thumbs while queer rights legislation stumbles through Congress.

We need to hold these two politicians, these two people that we elected and are supposed to represent our interests, we need to hold them accountable. We need to show them the dangerous consequences that come from their inaction, lack of leadership, and lack of courage. Because they allow discrimination and hateful laws to continue, they're perpetuating a hateful attitude across the country. And it's this unaccepting atmosphere, this second class citizenship, this feeling of being less-than that has contributed to the recent youth suicides. To show Obama and Murray the consequences of their inaction, we're having a die-in outside the pavilion.