Revolution #260, February 19, 2012

Raising Funds for BAsics for Prisoners—An Amazing Evening, from a Revolution supporter

We received this correspondence:

An amazing gathering of three different generations of immigrants came together at a house party to raise funds to get BAsics to prisoners. It was a great gathering. Everyone there was very familiar with what prison is. Some experienced it first hand and most have loved ones who have experienced it. People brought food and baked goods and were happy to be there. This party successfully raised $300. It was especially significant considering that the funds came from people who are really struggling financially.

Our host was very energetic in pulling this event together. In addition to the sharing of food, we had a discussion about different questions, including what was going on in the world.

We talked about BAsics and the call to those cast off by society, read a few letters from the prisoners, and talked about their hunger strike. We talked about the impact that BAsics could have in society. We read parts in the main editorial; some loved it passionately and some did not, and others just wanted to inform themselves about the debate and dialogue that could be brought into the society and what impact it could have. The letter from the prisoner who said that he has people on the waiting list for BAsics was very intriguing.

Many sharp questions got posed, including about what would it take for revolution to really come about here.

Do you have enough revenue to have activists go out and propagate your cause?

There were discussions about the Arab uprising and the Occupy movement and where they might end up.

Does your organization visit prisoners in an ongoing way, because this would make a difference for prisoners to have visitors? What is up with the Occupy movement now and what you are doing about that? What can a teenager like me do to help?

Our host, who had lived in another country for a while, talked about how different life was in that country that once was considered a socialist country, but it wasn't really one. The host said the lifestyles and values were different than what exists here in the U.S., but remarked on imagining what a real socialist country would be like. Someone asked a question about socialism that if they were so good and so intelligent, then why did they lose? We ended up talking about socialism as a transition and what Mao developed in understanding that.

We got into what BA has summed up and brought forward in the new synthesis. She ended up getting a copy of the Manifesto, as did one of her relatives who has only been here for a few months. At the end, most wanted to meet at to get into the questions more. It was an excellent evening, both in raising the funds and in having discussions about such deep questions about the possibilities and ways of changing the world.


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