Organize, Mobilize, Vote!
Dear Friend of SNCC,
JOIN THE SNCC 60TH ANNIVERSARY CONVENING IN APRIL
This SNCC 60th Anniversary Convening comes during a critical time, when the gains so many of us fought -- and died -- for are under assault from all sides. But, as we understood then: “Don’t mourn or complain; organize!”
Our Convening in April in Washington, DC will be a multi-generational gathering, including 1960s Movement veterans, activists from the 1970s and 1980s, and today’s organizers. We will look back at the organizing principles that guided SNCC veterans as they expanded democracy in the Deep South. But we will also look forward: at what is required to create a more democratic future… building coalitions together, beyond the usual artificial and dysfunctional boundaries.
We will discuss programs and tactics related to: voter education, mobilization and suppression; racism and white supremacy; educational equity; mass incarceration; climate change; women’s rights; LGBTQ+ rights; and economic justice.
As with our previous SNCC gatherings, we also invite those scholars and educators who are focused on documenting the past and present with greater accuracy, as well as classroom teachers interested in creating Movement-based content and pedagogy for use in their communities. And, as many of them know, we 1960s Movement veterans are living primary sources… and we won’t be around forever.
Throughout, we will be energized by the music and arts of our Movements. Freedom Songs will fill the air!
WHY ATTEND THE SNCC 60TH ANNIVERSARY CONVENING
In the 1960s, organizers of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) -- most of them students in their late teens -- learned how to create a more democratic society in America. Adults such as Ella Baker, Amzie Moore, Medgar Evers, “Mama Dolly” Raines and so many others, guided the young people of SNCC in developing their informational wealth: grassroots organizing skills based on experience and an understanding of the need for systemic, structural change. SNCC’s leadership – together with older local organizers – provided leadership during this country’s most historic social justice events: sit-ins; Freedom Rides; voter registration drives in Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia and Arkansas; Selma’s “Bloody Sunday” campaign; independent political parties, such as the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party (MFDP) and the Lowndes County Freedom Organization (originating the Black Panther symbol); Freedom Schools; and so many more.
THE FOCUS OF SNCC 60TH ANNIVERSARY WORKSHOPS – TRANSFERRING INFORMATIONAL WEALTH
When the legendary strategist, Ms. Ella Baker, called the young sit-in leaders together at SNCC’s founding conference at Shaw University in 1960, she emphasized in her speech that the struggle had to be for “more than a hamburger.” She wanted the young activists to understand that the goals of their movement had to be much broader than what they could envision at that moment, reminding them that segregated lunch counters were just the most visible examples of the larger, systemic web of racial, political and economic inequality.
This was the informational wealth that she passed on and that continues to live within SNCC veterans today. We, too, feel a deep responsibility to share our own informational wealth. And, like Ms. Baker, we recognize that this must be done by working collaboratively with young people, understanding – and learning from -- their issues and organizing concerns. This April 2020 Convening will provide a unique and historic opportunity for 1960’s Movement veterans to discuss -- among themselves and with younger activists -- the lessons learned and the variety of challenges facing today’s organizers
To register for the SNCC 60th Anniversary Convening, http://www.cvent.com/d/w6qyr1
To book your Hotel room(s) for the SNCC 60th Anniversary Convening,
DRAFT AGENDA FOR THE SNCC 60TH ANNIVERSARY CONVENING
The SNCC 60th Anniversary Convening workshops will have four areas of focus. A sampling of the scheduled workshops in each area of focus is listed below:
Voter Engagement at the State and Local Levels with a Focus on the 2020 Campaigns
Vote! Our Lives Depend On It: A Conversation About the 2020 Elections
Organizing Beyond the 2020 Elections: Today’s Youth Activists
Digital Political Organizing and Communications
An Intergenerational Discussion About the Continuing Struggle
The Black Freedom Movement Then and Now
From Emmett Till to Trayvon Martin: How Murders and Lynchings Radicalized African American Youth
Showing Up For Each Other: Building and Sustaining Allies
The Importance of Culture in Raising Political Consciousness
Raising Political Consciousness Through the Arts: Music
Raising Political Consciousness Through the Arts: The Spoken and Written Word
Raising Political Consciousness Through the Arts: Visual Arts and Media
The Importance of Telling Our History from the Inside Out and Creating Spaces that Make the History Available to Everyone
Telling Movement Stories from the Inside Out:The SNCC Digital Gateway (SDG)
Teaching the Civil Rights Movement
Documenting the Long Struggle for Freedom
So… Join Movement veterans and young activists from all across the country at this once-in-a -lifetime event!
To register for the SNCC 60th Anniversary Convening,