Effort in an upscale progressive suburb

March 10, 2013 | Revolution Newspaper | revcom.us


Most recently (yesterday) we did somewhat of a combination of street-team and concentrating at a Whole Foods-type market in town. This is a market that used to be much smaller and hard to do because of access. Now it is in a new location, big, and very accessible from the sidewalk in front. And it was very busy yesterday. A Native American homeless guy told us the patrons are a combination of residents of [two different suburbs]. He told us we’ve come to the right place because there is big bucks here. He said it’s “a good combination:[ one suburb] has the money, and [the other suburb] has the spirituality and consciousness.” He really picked up on and liked our internationalism.

I had met a guy that works in a small variety store on a visit to town a week or so ago. He was interested in the materials and coming to the film at the time. He had said he would share the materials with friends, and I saw him again yesterday. He said that he had shared the materials with a few friends, and that he was still interested to learn more and get into it more and possibly go to the film. I told him that we want to pursue this with him and his friends more. And he said fine, but he was speaking of a web presence and in particular, a website called reddit.com. I said I was more interested in seeing them in person than checking out the website, but I’d like to do both. He said we could post on this website all the information about the film. He noticed right away that we had a hashtag and said he did some web work and knows all about that technology. I am going to get in touch with him and ask him if he can post that on the website, which I should've said at the time. He gave me an e-mail address, he said which is reserved only for a select few. But that he and his friends discuss politics, and they'll discuss this more. He at first had been interested because of the radical nature of the solution to all the problems, which he sees many of them and hates in the world.

We met these two Black guys in their 30s at the big market. They are from Oakland, but have not heard anything about what we are doing, BA, etc. They were interested. We told them we were being truthful and frank and honest with them and that they needed to play a role in this. If this is going to succeed. I think they responded well to our certitude. They took extra materials and gave a phone number. Thinking now, we could've done something a little different, and try to arrange a listening session with them. We had trouble doing that because we had no table set up. I’m thinking that we could have used one of our people a little differently and had that person playing the interviews a short distance away and people could be directed to them. I think our orientation with them and others yesterday was better in terms of the need to involve people, making a big point of telling people this is serious and what their responsibility is to this revolution and telling them about this leader they need to engage with starting now. We explained the process of building for the film where the premiere itself is a nodal point and people need to be engaging, wrangling, and taking out and bringing forward others to be part of this, and they had a responsibility within this.

One comrade said that he was a little hesitant about challenging people to step forward and take part and engage with this. He didn't want to come off as hyping the thing and said that one thing we need to do is sharpen our agitation. We agreed that we can sharpen our agitation but that the flyer and the way it's laid out in the points are a really good guide in taking out this whole thing. And there's no reason for any hesitancy, so we should get into that some more. This came up at the end when we were summing up. Another comrade did a lot of challenging people and talking about the responsibility to step forward around this and be involved on various levels. She met someone from a community media, who invited her/us to come by. This station appears to have some public access throughout the area where we were yesterday. I thought the first comrade made an important point when he said that a lot of the people who responded positive yesterday were women, and he thought between the ages of 30 to 50. That was interesting because it is somewhat my experience as well. One woman who has a very small dress shop, said she really liked the fact that we have solutions, and we are saying, like the flyer says, all what's needed is for this world to be radically different. She said she's “well aware of the horrors in this world and what is different about what we are saying is that exact thing, it doesn’t have to be this way.. Everyone talks about this all the time, how bad things are.” She said, “can you believe the fact that in a country like this we do not have an equal rights amendment? But what you are saying is that the world doesn't have to be this way.” She had not heard of BA, and said she would get out flyers and we gave her a small stack for her store, as well as palm cards...

The second comrade met a woman who is unemployed, and is fearful of the future, because she doesn't know if she will be able to get work in the coming period the way things are. She took quite a number of flyers, and told the comrade to get back to her. I did not hear much more about this, why we didn’t meet more with her or get her an interview. I met a Black woman who lives in Marin, and it really struck her that what we are saying is true and is needed in the world. She said she had just been to an event recently at the Fox theater featuring West and Smiley. And that she really respects them, and is looking forward to listening to the interview with Cornel and BA. She said that she would really like to attend the premiere. I tried to sell her a ticket. But she said that she had to clear it with her son first. I told her that we would like to talk further. And if she has friends or relatives or her son that we could get together and talk with them. That would be great, I asked her if she has been in a book club or goes to political discussions, and she has done that type of thing in the past I said let's do something like that—get your friends together, we'll talk about this and to spread the word about the premiere and she said that’s a possibility. She would post up a poster and some flyers. She was trying to get into a car at the curb and she had to leave, unfortunately. I have her phone number and e-mail and we'll call her right away to follow-up.


Comment: Foray into an upscale progressive suburb shows potential for this; critical, self-interrogation spirit toward the work in the report a must.

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