On Oct. 21, the Claudia Jones School for Political Education hosted its monthly educational program, “Saturday School: The Socialist Movement,” at the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library. Featuring community activists, such as the program’s leader, Communist Party USA (CPU) co-chair Joe Sims, the event allowed attendees to discuss the increased interest in socialism among the youth, continued struggles of the working class faces, the MAGA movement, and more.
Monthly Saturday School encourages individuals from all backgrounds to take part in the inclusive discussion about the state of our community.
Are We in a Socialist Moment?
On the third Saturday of October, 30 minutes past noon, attendees of all ages and backgrounds shuffled into room 401-E at Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library. The discussion began with CPU co-chair Joe Sims, begging the question “Are we in a socialist moment?”
But before breaking the attendees up into groups to discuss the question, he wanted to make sure the room understood the meaning of socialism.
“A free college education,” proclaimed one attendee, “the right to health care,” called out another. “Housing access” exclaimed another person, before the attendees broke into groups to answer the main question.
“I don’t think we are in a socialist moment right now. People are focused on more pressing issues like the Bonga movement and the threat of fascism” shared Aaron, a local American University college student.
Other group members shared a similar sentiment, pointing out that the average working-class citizen focuses on more pressing matters, such as simply surviving day-to-day life.
Lack of Support from Political Parties for the Working Class
The discussion continued and Sims brought attendees back to the examples of what socialism is, what it isn’t, and what opposing or confused parties politically label it to be.
“I hate the term ‘identity politics.’ What they call ‘identity,’ we call human rights.”
Sims continued to discuss the Democratic party and Republican party, pointing out similar interests and sentiments both parties have on particular issues. He suggested people look beyond parties to observe the bigger political picture.
One example he offered was thinking critically about President Joe Biden’s decision to block U.S. railroad strikes in December of 2022, for example. Despite Biden being supportive of organized labor, Sims explained, this decision wasn’t very reflective of it.
Some of the attendees questioned if the Democratic party is failing to protect its workers. The Claudia Jones Political School offers a sounding board for attendees to ask questions and voice frustrations.
“The failure of the democratic party is why we are dealing with certain issues now,” Kyann, a Claudia Jones Political School staff member, expressed, further demonstrating the frustration of the youth and their call for change.
To learn more about the Claudia Jones School of Political Journalism, go to https://claudiajonesschool.org/ or their Instagram @claudiajonesschool.
Source: Washington Informer