May Day March & Rally, Hartford

1 May 2012 16:30

May Day Hartford 2012

Come Celebrate Worker and Immigrant struggles
for Social, Economic and Racial Justice!

Tuesday May 1
Gather at 4:30pm
March leaves at 5PM from the
Charter Oak Cultural Center
21 Charter Oak Ave

Join us at the Old State House if you can't make it by 5pm.

We will be welcomed by Steve Thornton of the
Service Employees International Union,
District 1199 with remarks on the meaning of May Day.

At 5pm we will begin marching to the Old State House
with stops along the way to mark:

· Worker's struggles against the Hartford Courant/Tribune
and Kingswood-Oxford School

· The struggle for racial justice and the struggle against
discriminatory hiring practices at the MDC

· Struggles Against the Wars and remembrance of the victims

· The struggles against oppression of immigrants in our communities

Regina Dyton of Queers Without Borders and Rev. Josh Pawelek, President of
the Greater Hartford Interfaith Coalition for Equity and Justice will be among
the local speakers at the Old State House where the march will end.

There will also be performances, a Maypole for Justice and calls for
solidarity with oppressed peoples in our community and abroad.

“An injury to one is an injury to All”   -The I.W.W.

Rallies Against Attacks On Public Education, Hartford, 4/24-25, 4-7PM

24 Apr 2012 16:00
25 Apr 2012 19:00

This Tuesday and Wednesday, the Connecticut Education Association (CEA)
and the American Federation of Teachers (AFT)
will hold 2 days of massive demonstations at the capitol to protest
Gov. Malloy's corporate attack on public education!
Both days will run from 4pm-7pm.
These events are going to be huge!
Teachers, parents, and students are coming from all over the state.
Any and all solidarity is needed to push back against the governor's
market-based "reform" agenda.

After making enormous positive changes to Senate Bill 24,
those opposed to public education and collective bargaining are pushing
back with advertising and political pressure.

The legislature will end its session May 9, and the time to have our voice
heard will soon come to an end.

Three buses will leave from New Haven on Tuesday, April 24 at about 4:30 PM,
and return about 7:30 PM. Teachers interested in participating should tell a
steward or officer in their building, contact Tom Burns at the union hall or
Eric Maroney.

Buses are available from other locations in the state.
To update yourself on the bill, check out Jonathan Pelto's blog:

Check out Real Hartford's coverage of the privitization schemes already afoot in Hartford:
Finally, to see the embarrassing, staged PRO-Malloy demonstrations, see this:

"...some students interviewed weren't clear on why they were there..."
(FYI- Students for Education Reform is a front group for the most powerful anti-union charter
schools and Teach for America.)

Connecticut ALEC's Hall of Shame Legislators

According to Wikipedia, the following Connecticut state legilators
are affiliated with the American Legislative Exchange Council:

Rep. John Piscopo, Republican House Minority Whip
50 Judson Street
Thomaston, CT 06787
Member ALEC Board of Directors

Rep. Debra Lee Hovey, Assistant Republican Leader
296 Fan Hill Road
Monroe, CT 06468
ALEC State Chairperson for CT

Sen. Kevin Witkos, Assistant Minority Leader
15 High Ledge Road
Canton,CT  06019
ALEC State Chairperson for CT

ALEC has promoted the infamous NRA Kill-At-Will bill
and endless right-wing, racist, capitalist bills to:

In the Justice System:

*mandate local police to enforce federal immigration law like AZ SB-1070

*privatize prisons

*enact mandatory minimum sentencing

*treat juvenile offenders as adults

*create barriers to alternatives to prisons

*revoke financial aid to college students convicted of a drug offense

*suspend the driver's license of anyone convicted of a drug offense

*oppose bans on semi-automatic weapons

*oppose waiting periods for criminal and mental health background checks of firearm purchasers

*support concealed-carry gun laws

*encourage guns on campus

In Education:

*subsidize private schools with public tax dollars

*promote climate change denial in education

*eliminate teacher tenure

*subsidize private universities

Against Workers:

*repeal and oppose minimum wage laws

*repeal prevailing wages for government contracts

*limit union rights

*support so-called "free-trade" export of jobs

See ALEC Exposed:

See American Legislative Exchange Council

Who Is Fighting for Connecticut's Trayvon Martins?

[The following speech was delivered by LaResse Harvey,
Executive Director of the
Civic Trust Public Lobbying Company
at the "Justice for Trayvon Martin" Rally
in Hartford on Saturday, March 31, 2012.]

Today we are here to show unity for Trayvon Martin. What we are not doing is being honest with ourselves. How many
times have we walked by a young black male with a hoody and instantly thought
the worst? Yes Zimmerman should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
However, we are all guilty of stereotyping, being prejudiced and biased toward
black youth in hoodies and baggie pants.

How many of us see a Trayvon walking into the bodega and believe he is going
inside to buy a Philly blunt? How many of us ever stopped to ask
ourselves…”Would we be here today if Trayvon Martin had a juvenile record?”
Let’s be honest!

There are laws created by fears, because most of our young black males look like
Trayvon Martin. There are movies, commercials, and media focused on skewing our
vision of a young black male. We do not challenge those negative images. We have
endorsed Mr. Zimmerman’s “suspicious looking” comment by not standing up against
other negative comments, laws, movies, and the like. We have turned our backs on
“our” own Trayvon Martins by supporting a new slave trade…the prison complex
industry, the criminal justice system, and dare I say the lack of an education

We allowed nicely packaged laws like Drug Free School Zones give us a false
sense of security, without doing our own research. No one told you that there
are two laws that protect our children no matter where they play, sleep, and
live. These laws carry a 3 year mandatory sentence. The statues are status
21a-278a sections a and c -- if you give a child drugs to sell or try to sell
drugs to a child you are in violation of these laws. Call your state
representative and senator. Tell them to vote yes on SB 244 The Enhance Penalty
for the Sale or Possession of Drugs Near Schools, Day Care Centers, and Public
Housing Projects which would rescind the mandatory minimum sentences and allow
discretion by the judges. We are tired of losing our young Black and Latino boys
and men to a law that depletes our community and doesn't offer real substance
abuse treatment. Prison is not treatment. In 2009, over 19,000 individuals were
arrested for Drug Free School Zone law. This number equated to the prison
population. Only 24% of the prison population has access to drug treatment
programs. There is something wrong here.

Racism is alive in America. America has not changed. Electing an African
American President, did not free us from this truth. President Obama himself was
reminded that he too is just a negro, the day he apologized to a white beat cop
for what? Making a statement with the word “stupidly” in reference to a “white
man”? Zimmerman is getting away with the opposite. Because he is a white man and
the person Zimmerman killed is a young black male it is okay in the sight of the
law and most White Americans. Let’s be honest!!!

Solidarity March to End Violence, Hartford, 4/7, 9:30AM

7 Apr 2012 09:30

Come, Join Mothers United Against Violence

for the 4th Annual March

"Solidarity in Connecticut"

Saturday, April 7, 2012
Gathering at 9:30AM
at the intersection of Main Street - Albany Ave, Hartford

Marching to the State Capitol for a Rally

Bringing together people from across the state
Remembering those loved ones killed on our streets

Commemorating the Effort
to End the Cycle of Violence
and Bring Hope
in State-Wide Solidarity

Come Join In Supporting the Families
And Working Towards Solutions

The vigil will feature community leaders and Hartford residents who have been directly
impacted by murder as well as speakers from among legislators and other elected officials.

Sponsored by Mothers United Against Violence
Hartford Communities That Care
Save Our Children from the Streets
You Are Not Alone [Y.A.N.A.], Bridgeport
Fathers Cry Too, New Haven.

For more information: Henrietta Beckman 860-727-9887

Honor Travyon Martin by Strengthening CT's Racial Profiling Laws!

Action Alert from the Community Party:

Contact Your State Senator and Represetative and urge them to
amend the Penn Act to include the Community Party's language --
Provisions 2, 3 and 4 below.

Also urge Mike Lawlor who oversees criminal justice issue for the administration,
to support the provisions. Mike dot Lawlor at

Why Is This Important?

Trayvon Martin was brutally murdered as a result of RACIAL PROFILING.
He and his family deserve justice but his murderer walks free!

Let's not forget about Jashon Bryant, shot and killed by a white police officer
in Hartford in 2005, Malik Jones, shot and killed by a white police office in 1997,
(both officers were acquitted) Oscar Grant, Sean Bell and so many other Black
males who have been unjustifiably killed by law enforcement.

The message sent to the general public by these killings is that young Black
males are a threat and must be dealt with accordingly.

Racial profiling has a trickle-down effect on the general public which leads to
hate crimes.


How You Can Promote Change:

Email your legislators and tell them that you support the Community Party's
Racial Profiling bill.

1) We want all motorists who are pulled over by the police to receive a traffic
stop receipt, which would include vital information such as the patrol officer's
name and badge number, driver demographics, and info on where to file a

2) All racial profiling complaints should remain confidential and be processed
and investigated by an entity which is independent of law enforcement, such as
the Commission on Human Rights and Opportunites.

3) We want protection for religious minorities and a prohibition against harassment
of motorists or passengers about their immigration status.

4) We are calling for the creation of a Penn Act / Racial Profiling Oversight
Committee made up of the Minority Commissions, CHRO, Law Enforcement
officials, legislators and at least two community stakeholders.

Racial profiling is a layered issue - traffic stops are just one tool of racially biased policing.

The profiling bill which is currently being debated at the State Capitol, S.B. 364
An Act Concerning Traffic Stop Infofmation, only includes provision 1 above.
We need the other provisions for full protection.

Visit to identify your legislators.

Check out the Community Party's facebook page for updates on the Penn Act:

Hartford Community Protests Trayvon Martin's Murder

Trayvon Martin Killing Sparks Rallies For Justice


The Hartford Courant

March 31, 2012

Protesters huddled around a podium at a North End intersection, braving the rain
and raw temperatures Saturday morning to engage in what has become an
international conversation on racism.

The killing of Trayvon Martin, an unarmed 17-year-old black student in Sanford,
Fla., who was shot by a neighborhood watch guard on Feb. 26, is just one example
of the effects of racism in the United States, according to more than 100 who
clapped and chanted for justice.

Martin's death prompted activists to call for fair policing in Connecticut,
better parenting in city homes and a renewed focus on education — which they
said have all been polluted by racism.

"This happened during the day. Where should [Martin] have been?" asked Hartford
City Councilman Kyle K. Anderson, standing on the corner of Albany Avenue and
Main Street. "In school, getting his education."

Martin had been suspended from school at the time of the shooting.

The rally in the North End was just one of several in Connecticut on Saturday.
Activists also gathered in front of the Capitol building and at campuses in New
Haven and Storrs.

Many of the protesters linked the killing to racial profiling.

"Racial profiling has a trickle-down effect on the general public, which
leads to hate crimes," said Mary Sanders, a member of the Community Party in
Hartford. "The best way for folks to honor Trayvon's memory is to protect the
Trayvons in Connecticut by supporting change to Connecticut's racial profiling

The Courant, in a recent look at more than 100,000 traffic stops reported in
Connecticut towns, found that Hispanic and African American drivers were much
more apt to get a ticket than whites — for the same offenses.

The legislature's Judiciary Committee this month approved amendments to the
state's anti-racial-profiling law that would require the state Office of Policy
and Management to develop a standardized form to be used during police stops,
and would shift to OPM the responsibility for analyzing the information gathered
on those forms. Proponents argue that the changes will improve compliance and
assure that police departments are held accountable if they mistreat motorists.

On Saturday, however, a diverse crowd was in agreement that action must be taken
to combat racism.

"We thought that with the election of President Obama that racism would end.
Racism is still alive in this country," Mayor Pedro E. Segarra said.

"It looks like there needs to be some federal intervention here," Segarra said
of Martin's case.

Segarra said his father was shot to death at age 19, a victim of what he called
Latino-on-Latino violence.

Frank O'Gorman, a member of the Queer Liberation Front, linked the teen's
killing to what he said was the white supremacy influencing police, courts,
government and education.

"Sanford is Connecticut, where African Americans and Latinos make up 23
percent of the general population but 80 percent of the prison population. Now
that looks suspicious," he said.

Sixteen-year-old Kejuan Williams said he doesn't worry about local police
treating him fairly. He said he feels safe in his hometown of Enfield, but has
concerns about safety in Hartford.

"It's a very tragic story," Williams said, who joined protesters across the
country donned in hoodies to symbolize racial stereotypes. "The fact that
[Martin] was young, he was a normal kid, and he likes Skittles."

Racist America Killed Trayvon Martin

[The following speech was delivered by Minister Cornell Lewis of the Men of
Color Initiative
at the "Justice for Trayvon Martin" Rally
in Hartford on Saturday, March 31, 2012.]

In Germany a man named Goethe said “truth comes to us first in a hideous mien.”
The solemn occasion for which we are gathered here today is like a recurring
nightmare. In European thought a nightmare hung over you like a cloud,
descending upon a victim and eventually placing an oppressive weight on that
sleeping person. The death of Trayvon symbolizes the nightmare so many black men
have suffered here in America--death.

And this reality of Trayvon descends upon our black consciousness, placing an
oppressive weight on our brothers and sisters that have gone asleep mentally,
and allowed such atrocities to continually happen. Like a Rip Van Winkle we go
to sleep (as a black nation) for 20 years until the next Blackman is killed;
then we lift voices to heaven crying for justice. Maybe we need not to look
toward heaven but recite a poem entitled With Freedom and Justice for Some:

Why should I love you red, white, and blue?
After all of the trouble you sent me through.
I was hated in the morning, and hunted down at night.
When I complained about my treatment, you said lord what a sight.
Because of my past treatment there is nothing for me to do,
But to turn my back completely on that red, white, and blue.

I tire of rallies where people of color sing, or pray, then go into hibernation
only to awake at the next death of a Blackman or injustice. We as a black nation
need to point out to America how dire our situation is. I am of the opinion that
the social soil in America is racially polluted. Zimmerman did not kill Trayvon
in a vacuum. The death happened due to an indifferent American society that set
the stage for a shooting by:

(1) not offering an apology to blacks for slavery,
(2) leading blacks to believe in the fiction that America is now over the
problem of race and prejudice,
(3) that Jim Crow is dead and will not arise on the 3rd day like Jesus,
(4) that any talk of reparations for blacks in America is stoking flames of

Zimmerman shot Trayvon because of a reality that we as blacks do not want to
discuss openly in public (for fear of being called a racist).

. America has not had honest dialogue about racism
. America cannot bring herself to listen to black people discuss our pain
. America will not admit that a collective white consciousness exists that can
call a boy “a coon” then chase him down and shoot him like a damn dog.

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