New Orleans, LA – Days after President Bush visited New Orleans and proclaimed that the city was “making noticeable progress,” people from as far as France and Brazil gathered in New Orleans Labor Day weekend to for an international tribunal to mark the two-year anniversary of hurricane Katrina.
Jena, LA – Momentum continues to build in the campaign for the Jena 6, a group of high school students that were arrested on trumped-up charges for a schoolyard fight. Though the Louisiana Third Circuit Court of Appeals dismissed charges against one defendant, Michael Bell, ruling that the 17-year old should not have been tried in adult court, thousands still plan on traveling to Jena on Thursday to protest what is being called, “a modern day lynching.”
Tuscaloosa, AL – Across the country, students held rallies in solidarity with the Jena 6. At the University of Alabama, over 100 students, faculty and staff gathered on the library steps, Sept. 20, the day after the massive rally Jena, Louisiana, demanding justice. The protest, organized by the Social Work Association for Cultural Awareness, the University of Alabama chapter of Students for a Democratic Society and the NAACP. The NAACP chartered a bus of students to attended the rally in Jena, which is being reported as the largest civil rights march in years, with crowd estimates around 20,000.
Washington, DC – People across the country took to the streets to protest on the sixth anniversary of the U.S. invasion of Iraq. Demonstrators called for an end to the ongoing wars and occupations in Iraq, Afghanistan and Palestine. It was the first national day of protest against the war and occupations since Obama was elected president.
Hoover, AL – In solidarity with the over 15,000 Goodyear Tire and Rubber workers who have been on strike since Oct. 5, demonstrations were held on Dec. 2 at Goodyear retail stores across the country. In Birmingham, over 100 workers and their supporters rallied at the retail store, while in Hoover, Alabama, a similar rally was held to protest the company’s unfair contract proposals, as well as to warn consumers of the risk involved in buying tires manufactured by strikebreakers.
Gadsden, AL – Despite the heavy rains and the passing weeks, workers at the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. plant here are holding the picket line, demanding job security and better health and insurance benefits. All 1250 workers at the Gadsden plant have been on strike since Oct. 5, leaving the plant idle and plant supervisors scrambling to make tires on their own. The United Steelworkers of America, who organized the strike, represents eleven other plants in America and two in Canada, a total of 15,000 workers, all of whom are participating in the strike.
Tuscaloosa, AL – Applause and cheers erupted in the courtroom at the Tuscaloosa County Courthouse, May 2, when the judge threw out the charges against four anti-war protesters. “As I was waiting outside to give my testimony, I heard the roar of clapping from behind the door,” remembers Tom Keenan, a member of the Tuscaloosa chapter of Students for a Democratic Society (SDS). “A mass of people flooded out of the court room, saying ‘We won!’”
People across the country marked the 5th anniversary of the Iraq war by taking to the streets in protest. Students turned out in full force. Members of Students for a Democratic Society, whose call for a week of action against the war brought together over 90 SDS chapters and other progressive organizations committed to rallying, marching and walking out to protest the war. This week of actions was the largest student-organized anti-war protests since the war on Iraq began.
Tuscaloosa, AL – Four protesters from Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) and Iraq Veterans Against the War (IVAW) were arrested here, Feb. 29, at the University of Alabama for performing a mock raid meant to demonstrate the effects of the U.S. occupation on Iraqi civilians.
Tuscaloosa, AL – Over a dozen students from the Tuscaloosa chapter of Students for a Democratic Society (SDS), wearing ‘bloody’ t-shirts, staged a die-in March 6, lying sprawled on concrete in the hot sun for over half an hour to draw attention to the massive number of casualties in the Iraq war. Students gave speeches over a megaphone, calling on their fellow students to stand up and speak out against the war.