Amongst young people, socialism is now more popular than capitalism in the US. Since the election of the racist, sexist billionaire Donald Trump, people have been compelled into action. It is in this context that the Socialist Party’s US sister organisation, Socialist Alternative, held their biggest ever summer school in late May. Around 350 activists came together to discuss and debate the way forward for socialists in the era of Trump.
The school started with a discussion on perspectives for struggle in the US, led off by Seattle socialist city councillor, Kshama Sawant. In this discussion, we heard about the looming battle over healthcare, ongoing union struggles and our approach to fighting back against Trump.
The following day, the relevance of the centenary of the Russian Revolution was discussed. This session also answered our critics about how and why Stalinism came about. This session was aptly followed by a rally featuring international speakers and reports from different sections of the Committee for a Workers’ International, the global organisation that Socialist Alternative in the US, and the Socialist Party in Australia, are in solidarity with.
One of the key sessions of the school looked at the Marxist approach to fighting oppression. This session discussed “identity politics” and a Marxist response to these ideas. There was also an exciting rally for the election of Ginger Jentzen who is standing for city council in Minneapolis.
The last sessions of the school were about putting our ideas into action. In the session on building Socialist Alternative we heard about campaigns in states such as Texas and Ohio and in the major cities of Chicago, Philadelphia and Los Angeles. Without a doubt, members returned home with a renewed determination, and armed with ideas about how to fight back against Trump and capitalism the US.
By Kat Galea