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Sparking Off Each Other is Building Mass Resistance

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This was a week that exemplified the historic moment in which we live. We will look back at these times and see the seeds of a national revolt against concentrated wealth that puts profits ahead of people and the planet. Not only were there a wide array of resistance actions, but activists against the Guantanamo prison and drone strikes scored partial victories on which we much continue to build challenges to US empire and militarism.

Mike Lux, who authored a history of the movements of the 1960s, wrote this week that when he researched his book he "was struck by the fact that so many big things happened so close together." Comparing that moment to today he writes, "We are living in such a moment in history right now, that organizers and activists are sparking off each other and inspiring each other, that there is something building out there that will bring bigger change down the road."

That is how we felt as we watched and participated in this week's unfolding.  We began the week prepared to focus our attention on the amazing teacher, student and community actions that were occurring in defense of schools.  In Philadelphia, there was a giant walk-out of schools last Friday as students demanded their schools remain open and be adequately funded.  The photos of young people fighting for the basic necessity of education were an inspiration. 

That was followed by three days of protests in Chicago that were equally inspiring, students organized and communities came together to fight for education.  Though corporate-mayor Rahm Emanuel's carefully selected board voted to close 50 elementary schools and one high school (while the city funds the building of a new basketball stadium), the Chicago activists say they are not done. They are just getting started.  It is that kind of persistence that wins transformation.  These school battles are part of a national plan to replace community schools with corporatized charter schools. The battles of Chicago, Philadelphia and other cities are all of our battles.   


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