The opening night at Peoples' Convention Los Angeles
2000 featured moving and stimulating speeches and songs by a wide variety of local activists for international solidarity.
In Belmont High School auditorium, colorfully decorated
with anti-imperialist murals courtesy of the Alliance of
Filipino Immigrants and Advocates, a diverse audience listened attentively and responded with thunderous applause for an emotional and information packed evening.
Videotapes are available from JusticeVision. Contact
Ralph Cole at DemocracyU@aol.com or 213-747-6345.
The session was also recorded by Pacifica Radio
Ross Altman tickled the audience by singing a parody of
Bush and Gore. Elena Montefiero sang in both Spanish
and English, and Maria Guardado delivered a
heart-breaking poem about disappeared children in El Salvador. We were all absolutely riveted by the acapella songweaving of Filipina activist Akilina Seriano.
We paused in remembrance of the atomic destruction of
Nagasaki 55 years ago. Overviews of U.S. military and
foreign policy were provided by Joe Maizlish of the War
Resisters League (who did his own Spanish interpreting)
and Richard Becker of International Action Center.
Other speakers primarily focused on the devastating effects of U.S. policies on particular people: Nyma Ardalan on the
Kurdish struggle for a homeland; Linda Tubach and Bob
McCloskey on the Iraqi embargo; Prof. Eugene Ruyle
on the development of China trade policies; and a
rousing speech by Don White on the gallant people of El
Be sure to join us tomorrow from 6pm to 10pm for a panel
on Los Angeles Environmental Problems and Solutions and
a debate among independent Presidential candidates.
On Friday, Peoples' Convention will meet from 4pm until
midnight, and on Saturday we will have workshops and
panels from 9am and an evening of resolutions and plans
for future working unity. Music, poetry and comedy will
be interspersed throughout the Peoples' Convention.