The Return of the Democratic Left: Building A Youth Movement for the 21st Century, Feb 17th-19th - JOIN THE STUDENT FIGHT BACK!
The Return of the Democratic Left: Building a Youth Movement for the 21st Century
Conference, Feb 17th-19th, 2012
New York City - St. Francis College - 180 Remsen Street, Brooklyn Heights, New York, 11201 - At the foot of the Brooklyn Bridge
Dr. Cornel West, a champion of racial justice since childhood, is one of America's most provocative public intellectuals and has been tireless in his support of Occupy protests around the country, from his participation in a trial of Goldman Sachs to protests of police brutality in Harlem.
Dr. Frances Fox Piven, is widely recognized as one of America's most thoughtful and provocative commentators on America's social welfare system and is credited by Glenn Beck as responsible for orchestrating a plot to take down the US economy.
Dr. Michael Walzer, is one of America’s foremost political thinkers on democracy and has served as editor for the political journal Dissent for more than three decades.
Occupy Wall Street organizers from Zuccotti Park and other encampments.
Meet youth from across the country to share insights, tips, and ideas about organizing on your campus.
Explore the root causes of rising tuition and skyrocketing student debt, why students of color consistently face more barriers to accessing higher education, and how the neoliberal capitalist economy screws young workers (those that are lucky enough to even find jobs).
Discuss strategies for how to fight back against further state budget cuts to education.
Learn concrete activist skills that you can use back on campus like:
o How to organize an event, such as a protest, walk-out, or teach-in
o How to get more students involved in your campaign
o How to plan a campus campaign for social justice
o How to get your message out
o How to run an effective meeting that inspires people and gets things done
o How to participate in the Student Debt Boycott, Campaign for Accessible and Affordable Higher Education, and other student rights campaigns
There will be additional workshops about socialist-feminism, the state of young workers in the recession economy, understanding the labor movement, understanding neoliberal capitalism, and other topics. In addition caucus space is provided for traditionally marginalized groups (students of color, women, LGBTQ students, and working class students) to meet.
This fall, we have seen the beginnings of an inspiring movement in Occupy Wall Street and its sister actions across the United States. It is time to prepare for our spring anti-austerity offensive. We must discuss strategy, learn skills, and plan for our actions in the spring. This winter is a crucial time to organize. With the energy from Occupy Wall Street still surging, Young Democratic Socialists, friends, and allies from around the country continue to build their local Occupations. The conference will allow us to reflect on this work and discuss how to move forward.
One of the inspirations of youth participation in the Occupy phenomenon is student debt. For too many students access to college involves taking on unbearable debt. Many young people give up on higher education entirely, and graduates struggle through only to remain jobless and stuck in accelerating debt slavery as their interest rates compound. From 1981-2010 college tuition has increased 7% every year, more than double the rate of overall inflation of 3%. Overall, college tuition and fees have quadrupled in real terms from 1982 to 2007. Additionally, federal financial aid, which used to be 80% grant based, is now 80% loans based. These problems occur because of policy decisions made and carried out by representatives of the 1%, and they can be reversed, but only if we build anti-corporate social movements capable of winning reforms that empower people, including a strong and audacious student movement.
Our conference will be specially focused on fighting back against student debt and rising education costs.
- $20 Special High School Rate
- $30 Youth and Student Pre-Registration Rate (The price at the door will be $40)
- $40 Institutional Rate (this is the rate for those whose registration fee is paid by an institution such as a college or non-profit)
- $60 solidarity rate for youth (extra funds will go towards travel scholarship for low-income youth)
- $75 non youth or student pre-registration
- $10 for a day pass