‘I really like the Militant’s coverage of today’s strikes’

By Seth Galinsky
January 17, 2022
Socialist Workers Party member Bill Arth, left, speaks to members of Teamsters Local 542 on strike at Republic Services in Chula Vista, California, Dec. 29. An essential part of the SWP drive to win longer-term Militant readers is campaigning in defense of fighting workers.
Militant/Sylvia HansenSocialist Workers Party member Bill Arth, left, speaks to members of Teamsters Local 542 on strike at Republic Services in Chula Vista, California, Dec. 29. An essential part of the SWP drive to win longer-term Militant readers is campaigning in defense of fighting workers.

The six-week drive to win more than 300 current Militant readers to renew their subscriptions to the socialist newsweekly is off to a good start, with 68 renewals in hand. The goal is to win renewals from at least 20% of the more than 1,300 people around the world who subscribed to the paper during the fall.

Among recent subscribers are strikers met on union picket lines, family farmers and taxicab drivers fighting crushing debt; opponents of the U.S. rulers’ economic war against Cuba’s socialist revolution; and hundreds of working people who subscribed after Socialist Workers Party candidates or campaigners knocked on their doors.

'Militant' Renewal Drive January 1 - February 15Marrie Martinez, who renewed her subscription a week ago, plans to get together soon with members of the Socialist Workers Party in Fort Worth, Texas, to discuss the article, “Working-Class Fight for Women’s Emancipation, Support for Families.” Martinez has questions about how the Socialist Workers Party’s defense of working-class families includes decriminalization of abortion.

That article explains that the discussion about women’s emancipation starts with combating the many obstacles the capitalist rulers put in front of working people wishing to start a family. The article takes up the fight for affordable child care, the right to adopt without bureaucratic obstacles, and family planning, including contraception and hospital-provided abortion. It explains why joining fights for women’s rights is key to uniting the working class.

Martinez told SWP member Josefina Otero that she has friends she thinks would be interested in reading the Militant and exchanging views with members of the party on the way forward for the labor movement.

Otero reports that seven subscribers there — almost everyone they spoke to so far — renewed their subscriptions. This included an official of the United Steelworkers union they met at a protest in Irving, Texas, in support of locked-out workers at ExxonMobil in Beaumont. Given such a good response, the Socialist Workers Party branch there voted to raise its goal from nine to 15.

“And several subscribers are thinking about friends or relatives who might be interested in the paper,” Otero told the Militant. Every reader of the Militant can help expand the reach of the socialist newsweekly and books by Socialist Workers Party leaders and other revolutionaries.

“I really liked the paper’s reporting on union struggles,” retired government worker Annette Springer told Janice Lynn when she renewed her subscription in Atlanta Jan. 2. “The unions had been down for a while, so it is good to read about how they are standing up and fighting again.”

Lynn added, “We are seeing more workers using their unions to fight against attacks on our wages and working conditions — and building solidarity.” These strikes set an example to millions of other workers about what can be done to fight to end multitier wage scales that widen divisions among workers and to fight for cost-of-living adjustments so that wages automatically go up when prices rise.

Defense of rights working class needs

“I liked reading about why people fighting for their rights benefits the whole community,” Springer said.

The Militant provides coverage of burning issues of the day from a working-class standpoint. One young woman who Helen Meyers and Edwin Fruit spoke to in Minneapolis said she likes the Militant’s coverage of union fights. But she had questions about the paper’s reporting on the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse in Kenosha, Wisconsin. She thought the outcome “was a mess.”

Rittenhouse was found “not guilty” by a jury in the killing of two men who attacked him during a night of rioting and protests after the police shooting of Jacob Blake Jr., in August 2020. The Militant explained the importance of starting with the facts, which clearly showed Rittenhouse was defending himself and had not initiated any violent encounters.

The right to due process, to be innocent unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, to a trial by a jury of your peers are rights the working class needs and they must be defended, Fruit said.

The young woman renewed and bought Malcolm X, Black Liberation, and the Road to Workers Power by SWP National Secretary Jack Barnes and The Jewish Question: A Marxist Interpretation by Abram Leon.

During the course of the renewal drive, there are specials on eight books on Marxist politics along with 20% off on all other Pathfinder titles. (Click here to see ad)

Special offer on new book

In addition, a new book coming off the presses next week will strengthen the drive. Subscribers can get Labor, Nature, and the Evolution of Humanity:The Long View of History with articles by Frederick Engels, Karl Marx, George Novack, and Mary-Alice Waters for just $5, less than half the cover price. The book is available in both English and Spanish. (See ad on this page.)

The book explains why the scientific foundation provided by Marxism is essential for understanding how human society was created through social labor, and why class-divided society, exploitation and the dictatorship of capital we live under today hasn’t always existed. Like slavery and serfdom before it, capitalist rule had a beginning and will have an end.

Expanding the long-term readership of the Militant will put the SWP in a good position to launch election campaigns for U.S. Senate, state governorships and other statewide and federal offices in coming weeks. Communist candidates and the Militant will be a pole of attraction for workers and others who want to stand up to the bosses’ exploitation and resist the impact of their declining capitalist system on our lives. Many of those we meet are interested in discussing a working-class road forward and will want to consider joining the Socialist Workers Party.

Militant supporters are inviting readers to help get the paper and books into the hands of others, to attend Militant Labor Forums, and to join in bringing solidarity to picket lines of striking workers.

The renewal drive runs from Jan. 1 through Feb. 15. Renewals sold prior to the start of the drive count toward the goals.

In the course of getting back in touch with readers, we have learned some subscriptions have not been arriving. Subscribers who are not getting the paper should contact distributors nearest them, or the Militant, so we can ensure they get their paper.

Want to help introduce friends, co-workers, neighbors and relatives to the Militant and the Socialist Workers Party? Contact the party branch nearest you, or contact the Militant at themilitant@mac.com.