May 08, 2008

Recreate 68! "Back To The Future": What Does Recreate 68 Mean?

"That spirit of participatory democracy culminated in 1968. Since then, a right-wing backlash has attempted to roll back the gains of those years, to “recreate” an America in which a ruling elite of wealthy, privileged white males and large corporations made a mockery of the promise of democracy"--Recreate 68 Alliance

From their allies at DNCdisruption08.org, an "explanation":
In response to misunderstandings, inaccuracies and deliberate distortions in the media about the meaning of the group’s name, the members of the organizing committee of Recreate 68, an umbrella organization planning and providing support for demonstrations around the Democratic National Convention, have decided to present the truth about the organization and its obviously controversial name, once and for all.

Let us be clear: the name is not “Recreate Chicago 68” or “Recreate the DNC 68.” The idea that “Recreate 68” refers specifically to the events of late August 1968 in Chicago has been put out by those who wish to discredit an organization planning peaceful, nonviolent protests by associating it with what they would have us believe was a violent protest 40 years ago. Let us also be clear that those conducting this smear campaign are distorting history: what happened in Chicago in 1968 was not a violent protest, but rather a “police riot,” the term used by the Walker Commission, a body appointed by the Nixon administration to investigate the events surrounding the Chicago convention.
So, now we "know" what Recreate 68 is not--glad to see the riot question cleared up.

They continue:
Obviously, neither Recreate 68 nor anyone else wants to see that kind of police violence repeated in Denver this August. That is why members of R68 began meeting with representatives of the mayor’s office and the Denver Police Department over a year ago to try to ensure that the rights of demonstrators to engage in peaceful, nonviolent free speech activities, marches and demonstrations, would be respected; and why R68 has applied for permits to use city parks, and to engage in marches, and has worked with the American Civil Liberties Union and the National Lawyers Guild to assert our First Amendment Rights.

What then does the name Recreate 68 mean? The 1960s were a time of profound, positives social and political change in this country. The civil rights movement ended legal segregation and broke down barriers to the full participation of African Americans in American life (still yet to be fully achieved). Other movements followed that achieved the same for women and for other oppressed communities of color. That in 2008 the two leading candidates for the Democratic nomination for President are an African American man and a woman something unimaginable at the start of the 60s is a direct result of the changes brought about in that decade.
Finally some substance. "Social and political change"--I can dig it. But they don't like either establishment candidate, though Barack Obama comes closer to their moonbat style and rhetoric.

Here come the "right-wingers":
That spirit of participatory democracy culminated in 1968. Since then, a right-wing backlash has attempted to roll back the gains of those years, to “recreate” an America in which a ruling elite of wealthy, privileged white males and large corporations made a mockery of the promise of democracy. For the past 40 years, we have seen increasing economic inequality, a fierce attack on affirmative action and other programs aimed at aiding oppressed communities, an assault on civil liberties and, most recently, an attempt to equate political dissent with criminality or “terrorism.” Under the Bush administration, the right has come dangerously close to achieving their goal.
. . .
The organizers of Recreate 68 say, “The time is now.” It is time to recreate the spirit of mass political participation of the 60s. To recreate the spirit that will once again force this country to live up to its own professed principles of democracy, equality and human rights. To recreate the idealism that brought millions of people into the streets to challenge authority, to question assumptions, and to succeed.

The time is now to end the illegal occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan; to use the money being wasted there to meet the needs of the American people; to provide health care for everyone; to restore civil liberties; to create a humane immigration policy; to replace the tragedy of “free trade” with fair trade; to combat global warming; and to transform a corrupt, corporate-dominated political system into real democracy.

Recreate 68! Back to the Future!


In Solidarity,

Members of Recreate 68 Alliance (an alliance of over 40 national and local progressive groups)
So there you have it.

Takeaways--somewhat short and actually well-written as far as manifestos go. Less moonbat academic -ism vocabulary, but no shortage of victimology and blame-America-first, anti-capitalist boilerplate.

Real audience? Their erstwhile and skittish allies. There is still concern over the possibility of violence at the DNC, and Recreate 68 (sans Tent State) is still looking to divert attention from the group's intentions and the name itself.

Not sure they succeed.

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