July 4 Weekend: Mass Outings to Spread the Word About Bob Avakian and Raise Funds for BA Everywhere


Updated July 8, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper | revcom.us


On the weekend of July 4-5, crews of people in different cities across the country responded to a call posted at revcom.us (“A Bold Initiative for the July 4 Weekend”) for mass outings to spread the word about Bob Avakian (BA) and his leadership, and to raise funds for the BA Everywhere campaign. On this page are some initial pictures and brief reports that we’ve received.

New York City

New York, July 4July 4, New York City

Revolution Club members and other revolutionaries and folks who wanted to join us went out in a park in Harlem. Right off the bat, as the crew stepped off chanting “We are the RevComs, the Mighty, Mighty Revcoms” and “What’s the Problem? The Whole Damn System! What’s the Solution? Revolution!” controversy and interest got stirred up. In one very contentious group, we went back and forth for a few minutes and then told folks they had to hear BA speak—if you haven’t heard BA, you don’t know anything about what is possible and how to go about it. By this time several folks were very intrigued and watched carefully part of the Q&A from the film REVOLUTION AND RELIGION: The Fight for Emancipation and the Role of Religion; A Dialogue Between CORNEL WEST & BOB AVAKIAN and by the end of the clip, everyone recognized in BA someone serious about understanding this system and getting rid of it. The person who started out the most vociferously arguing that he didn’t need to know about any of this, apologized for being disruptive and wanted to know how to be connected. Some people cleaned out their pockets to donate. This was just a beginning...as it began to rain, the group headed underground onto the trains.

East Oakland

A group of revolutionaries went out in the community on July 4 to take out palm cards with the new quote from Bob Avakian and the cards promoting the Revolution and Religion Dialogue between Cornel West and BA, raising funds for BA Everywhere, and inviting people to a BBQ later that day. Thousands of palm cards and many copies of Revolution were distributed.

Oakland, July 4Oakland, July 4

Many people stopped and watched sections of the Revolution and Religion DVD. The Revolution Club marched through the community. A Black man who saw sections from the DVD said, “Damn, I hadn’t thought a future like this was possible before.” A Guatemalan woman who discussed the new quote from BA said: “Black people have been treated like slaves under this system—living through the terrible things that were done to them. It will be a beautiful thing if revolution can happen and humanity can be liberated.”


Cleveland, July 4 Cleveland, July 4

On Friday afternoon, Revolution Club members and RCP supporters went out to busy intersections in a Black community to get out palm cards for the new BA quote and Cornel West-Bob Avakian Dialogue on Religion and Revolution. There was a truck to show clips from the Dialogue DVD. That night a Club member got out the word about BA to a reggae concert, attended mostly by white youth. On Saturday, we went to a big park where a multinational crowd, mostly Black and Latino, come to see fireworks. We went to people as they were grilling, and did 14 showings of excerpts from the Dialogue. Many people said they wanted to go online to watch the whole film. We got out about 650 of the two palm cards.


On July 4, revolutionaries went to the West Baltimore area where police grabbed Freddie Gray and eventually killed him. We invited people to the screening next day at the Ethical Society of  the Dialogue between Cornel West and Bob Avakian on Religion and Revolution, and we showed the trailer and an excerpt from the film on a tablet to people on their stoops. The card with BA’s new statement was gotten out to a number of people and read out loud. A recurring question came up: yes, Black people need to play a crucial role, but are we out here by ourselves? How about white people? This brought us back to the importance of coming to the showing on Sunday to hear how this and other questions are addressed.


A team went to the July 4 celebration at Centennial Olympic Park in Downtown Atlanta and got out the new BA quote palm cards along with cards of the Dialogue between BA and CW, and copies of the Revolution newspaper. There were tens of thousands heading to the fireworks along with a gigantic crowd of people from around the world passing in the opposite direction to an International Alcoholics Anonymous convention that apparently had 110,000 attendees. The atmosphere was challenging as we shared a corner near some Christian-fascists and not-fascist horn players. We connected with some interested people and got out palm cards to hundreds.


Chicago, Grateful Dead, July 4Chicago, Grateful Dead "Fare Thee Well" concert

On July 4, a crew of revolutionaries went to the three-day Grateful Dead "Fare Thee Well" concerts, celebrating 50 years of the Dead. The event had a massive tailgate party in the parking lot of Soldier Field stadium where the concert was. We were there to introduce people to Bob Avakian, raise big bucks for the campaign, get lots of people to get revcom.us e-subs, and popularize the Revolution and Religion Dialogue film. We figured this would be a great opportunity for the BA Everywhere campaign to reach out to people all across the country and we were right. We met people from Baltimore, Virginia, Philadelphia, Colorado, Georgia and many more places. The crowd was tens of thousands strong with three generations of overwhelmingly white and tie-dye wearing Dead Heads. We mainly handed out the palm cards through the crush of people that jammed around the table all day. We were reaching out to people with “We Need an Actual Revolution”. We found a very friendly crowd open to checking out who BA is, what is this revolution we’re talking about and what exactly is the strategy for revolution that we were talking about. We also found that the Stolen Lives poster had an immediate effect on people, as some stopped to read it as soon as we put the poster up as we set up.

Chicago Revolution Club July 4

Chicago Revolution Club in park July 4

From Chicago Revolution Club:

The Revolution Club was out on the south side. From Friday through Sunday we were rolling with a van that had a large screen TV that played the trailer and clips from the Dialogue between Cornel West and Bob Avakian, starting Friday night at a fundraising picnic for funeral expenses for Nunu, young Black man killed by the police.

Saturday, Revolution Club members (and new recruits) discussed the piece on revcom.us, “Going into July 4 Weekend: Thoughts on Role and Vision of Revolution Clubs.” We went to a park nearby and practiced marching with the call and response “Everywhere we go/people want to know/We are the Revcoms/Mighty, Mighty Revcoms.” A crew of shorties joined us and learned the chant and marched alongside. We talked to them and their parents about BA and got them palm cards with the new quote by BA and the Dialogue and Revolution newspaper. Organized and oriented, we continued the day/evening marching into parks and introducing many people to BA through the palm cards and placards we were carrying and Revolution newspaper. At a small neighborhood park we go to regularly, people made plans to donate larger sums later in the week as younger people joined in the chanting.

At a larger park where many families were barbequing, we marched around the park doing the call and response. Many people got with the spirit, some joined in the chant and/or threw up their fists. The “Women are not bitches, ho’s, etc...” chant particularly captured the attention of groups of young women who wanted to know more about the revolution. We stopped at points to read the Fredrick Douglass quote on July 4 and the new BA quote. There was a dialectic between speaking to the outrages of the system and the kind of world we could have and the point on the card, “What We Need is an Actual Revolution and if you are Serious about Revolution you have to Get Seriously into BA.”

Sunday, the Revolution Club and friends pic-nicked at a south side beach, introducing many people to BA, getting out palm cards and Revolution newspaper, and had people coming over to watch the trailer and clips from the Dialogue.


Over the July 4 weekend, teams of revolutionary communists and masses went out to take out and raise money in different parts of the city. We raised $128 on the streets and have over $50 in pledges to be collected this week. On one afternoon, we drove around a Black neighborhood where many are familiar with BA, playing clips from the film BA Speaks: Revolution—Nothing Less! and getting out to people who were out in the streets. One pastor said that after what happened in Charleston, he feels that now is the time for people to get serious,and act and they need to hear what BA is saying. He took a bunch of cards to take to his church and said that he was going to ask people to make donations. A young man took a penny jar to take around the neighborhood as he got out palm cards.

On Saturday, we went out to a park where there were a lot of family gatherings and barbeques. One person on our team sold bottles of water as we went from grouping to grouping collecting donations and getting out palm cards and newspapers. Later, we setup a revolution corner outside the citywide 4th of July celebration with a display of "Fight the Power, and Transform the People, for Revolution" and the back page of Revolution with the new quote from BA.  An agitator contrasted the quote from BA with the ugly celebration of America and challenged people to get with BA and donate. At one point, some youth gathered around a stolen lives poster and began chanting "fuck the police" and asked us, are you talking about a real revolution? People started gathering around the corner, and some started debating – is the problem racism, or is it the system. The youth who were chanting took a bunch of cards to get out to others, and then later came back when cops started surrounding the corner, because they said they wanted to defend the revolutionaries. The next day we went out to a large church in a Black community and got the palm cards out to people going in. Several people came out later with money in hand and donated. One young woman said that she was so glad that she got to read the palm card with BA's new quote because it gave her hope.


As part of getting out BA Everywhere and raising funds on July Fourth, we went to a couple parks in inner city. We had a big placard with Bob Avakian's (BA) "There is the potential for something of unprecedented beauty to arise..." statement on it, and also flyers with this statement and Frederick Douglas's "What to the slave is your Fourth of July?" These parks are small but they were crowded. The majority hanging out were Black, but also many white, Latino, and Native people. We got out a couple hundred of the flyers with the new statement by BA. We got a good amount of attention, possibly due to our "Revolution—Nothing Less" t-shirts and the posters we had been putting up in the area. Several people took stacks of the flyers to distribute at their housing. We also got out the latest issue of Revolution newspaper, and at one point there were half a dozen folks sitting in the shade reading the paper.



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REVOLUTION AND RELIGION The Fight for Emancipation and the Role of Religion, A Dialogue Between Cornel West & Bob Avakian
BA Speaks: Revolution Nothing Less! Bob Avakian Live
BAsics from the Talks and Writings of Bob Avakian
Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America (Draft Proposal)
WHAT HUMANITY NEEDS Revolution, and the New Synthesis of Communism
You Don't Know What You Think You 'Know' About... The Communist Revolution and the REAL Path to Emancipation Its History and Our Future Interview with Raymond Lotta