I was invited to speak on Lessons From the Occupy Movement at Grand Valley State University near Grand Rapids, MI, on January 23, 2012. Before the evening’s event, I was asked to stop by for a chat with veteran activist and videographer, Jeff Smith. His video of our conversation about Occupy is posted below.
In two frenetic days of discussion, debate and meetings I came away with even greater hope for the Occupy movement. Not because radicals don’t face enormous challenges ahead of us, we do. But because even in small cities where political life is dominated by hard-right fanatics, there are often groups of organized radicals — anarchists, socialists, social democrats and budding rebels of every sort. They rarely make it into the media, but they are among the stars in a global struggle for justice.
Huge thanks to the inspired organizing work of the gang in and around Grand Rapids, especially Colette Seguin Beighley who leads GVSU’s LGBT Center. People like Colette and her Change U crew are debating and organizing to make the world fit to live in. Thank you.