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California's Feminist Socialist Political Party

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Home News News items Coalition Building: Peace and Freedom Party and Occupy Sacramento Shut Down Monsanto

Coalition Building: Peace and Freedom Party and Occupy Sacramento Shut Down Monsanto

By Andy Conn

Posted on July 1, 2013] by the Communications Committee

Excerpt (click "Read more" for the full story):

In March of 2013, two members of the Peace and Freedom Party came together to implement the first shutdown of the Davis Monsanto. The two day shutdown was a success. The plant shut down with the aid of the members of Peace and Freedom, along with the Stop Monsanto Project and other groups, and generated a lot of press concerning Monsanto’s shady to illegal business practices. Since then two more shut downs have been successfully accomplished and the National Stop Monsanto march and rally on May 25th was attended by 1500 people. This rally was spearheaded by members of the Peace & Freedom Party.

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Bobby Clark, Peace and Freedom Party Sutter County Interim Chair; Cindy Sheehan, Peace and Freedom Party of California 2014 Gubernatorial Candidate; and Andy Conn Peace and Freedom Party, Placer County Interim Chair. Photo by Greg Iron, G.I. Publishing/Design.

Coalition Building: Peace and Freedom Party and Occupy Sacramento Shut Down Monsanto

Nineteen months after the birth of the Occupy movement I was asked what impact Occupy Sacramento had on the progressive movement. Prior to Occupy, political activists worked linearly on specific projects, whether social justice, homeless rights, anti-war, environmental issues or other human rights and worldwide problems.

In the days before Occupy, when we on the left came together to support a specific cause and when we also carried the banners of our specific causes, the main stream media would drag out their worn but effective scenario on how we on the left had so many causes and we were so disorganized that we really had no idea what we were fighting for. The effectiveness of this media campaign was gauged by conversations with friends and acquaintances who would parrot back the regurgitated blather that they had just been feed via the airwaves and written press.

What Occupy accomplished, which by the way is very frightening to the powers that be, was many newly forged alliances. Because of Occupy a central clearinghouse and gathering point was established so that now groups that would have never crossed paths were planning, organizing, and developing direct actions in concert with and in full support of each other. The Brown Berets that had never worked with Earth First, the Peace and Freedom Party, or the Stop Monsanto groups were now organizing not one shut down of Monsanto but two, three, and four shut downs. Single members of the IWW were finding each other and formed a strong Sacramento chapter. The present members of the Peace and Freedom Party have been a driving force behind the growth of this chapter with support and cross membership.

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C. T. Weber, Peace and Freedom Party of California Legislative Committee Chair; Bobby Clark, Peace and Freedom Party Sutter County Interim County Chair; Steven Payan, Peace and Freedom Party Yolo County Interim County Chair; and Andy Conn, Placer County Interim County Chair at a demonstration at the Monsanto headquarters in Davis, California. Photo by Greg Iron, G.I. Publishing/Design.

In March of 2013, two members of the Peace and Freedom Party came together to implement the first shutdown of the Davis Monsanto. The successful two day shutdown was a success. The plant shut down with the aid of the members of Peace and Freedom, along with the Stop Monsanto Project and other groups, and generated a lot of press concerning Monsanto’s shady to illegal business practices. Since then two more shut downs have been successfully accomplished and the National Stop Monsanto march and rally on May 25th was attended by 1500 people. This rally was spearheaded by members of the Peace & Freedom Party.

Occupy Sacramento has been a huge booster of the Peace & Freedom Party in the Sacramento Region. Membership is climbing. The age of new members is becoming younger, making room for new ideas and casting fresh eyes on ongoing projects. Members of Peace and Freedom are actively involved in the dismantling of the prison industrial complex, police brutality issues, homeless issues, environmental causes like the Keystone Pipeline, and more.

Cindy Sheehan, who identifies Occupy Sacramento as her home Occupy, is going to be our candidate for Governor in 2014. This will afford us the opportunity to spell out our platform and recruit new members. These are very exciting times for the Peace and Freedom Party, and I am glad to be involved.

Andy Conn is the interim county chair of the Placer County Central Committee.

 
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