21 August 2012

The Rag Blog : Peace and Justice Activist Tom Hayden in Austin

Progressive activist and New Left pioneer:
Tom Hayden in Austin Saturday

The Rag Blog and Rag Radio are presenting progressive activist and New Left icon Tom Hayden at the 5604 Manor Community Center, 5604 Manor Rd. in Austin, on Saturday, August 25, at 5 p.m. Hayden will speak on "The Drug War, the Peace Movement, and the Legacy of Port Huron." There is a suggested donation of $5 which will benefit the New Journalism Project, publisher of The Rag Blog.

Hayden will be in Austin in conjunction with Mexican poet Javier Sicilia’s Caravan for Peace which is aimed at ending the U.S.-sponsored Drug War and which will rally on the steps of the Texas State Capitol from noon-3 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 25, 2012.

Tom Hayden was a founder of SDS and the primary author of the Port Huron Statement, the defining document of the New Left, which is celebrating its 50th Anniversary this year with major observances around the country.

He was a Freedom Rider in the Deep South, a community organizer in Newark, N.J., and one of the most visible and articulate opponents of the War in Vietnam. He was one of the Chicago Seven, arrested during demonstrations at the 1968 Chicago Democratic Convention.

He later organized the grassroots Campaign for Economic Democracy in California and then spent 16 years in the California legislature -- where the Sacramento Bee called him the “conscience of the Senate” -- and is now an author, a teacher, and one of the country’s most eloquent advocates for peace and justice.

Tom has recently taught at Scripps College and Pitzer College, Occidental College, and Harvard University’s Institute of Politics; and is currently teaching a class at UCLA on protest movements from Port Huron to the present.

Hayden, who is the author or editor of 19 books and serves on the editorial board of The Nation, is a leading progressive activist and an outspoken critic of the Pentagon's “Long War.” He was an initiator of Progressives for Obama, a group that offered critical support for Barack Obama during his initial campaign for the presidency.

Hayden is director of the Peace and Justice Resource Center in Culver City, California, edits the Peace Exchange Bulletin, and organizes anti-war activities for the Progressive Democrats of America (PDA).

Nicholas Lemann wrote in The Atlantic that “Tom Hayden changed America.” Historian James Miller called the Port Huron Statement “one of the pivotal documents in post-war American history.” Historian Michael Kazin called Port Huron “the most eloquent manifesto in the history of the American Left.” Richard Goodwin, advisor to Kennedy and Johnson, said that Hayden “created the blueprint for the Great Society programs.”

Tom Hayden told Thorne Dreyer on Rag Radio: "It’s a little uncanny how the words of the Port Huron Statement echo today...”

Read "As Port Huron turns 50: An Interview with Peace and Justice Activist Tom Hayden," by Thorne Dreyer at The Rag Blog, and listen to Dreyer's two hour-long Rag Radio interviews with Hayden.

Read articles by Tom Hayden on The Rag Blog.

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