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Tuesday, December 04, 2012

Tom Hayden will speak at the Peace Center's Annual Meeting this Friday

Tom Hayden will be the main speaker at this year’s Annual Meeting, for the Peace and Social Justice Center.

Each year the Peace center has an annual meeting, including a dinner, a short business meeting and then the speaker is presented. Hayden will speak at 8p.m.
The dinner starts at 6:30 pm, and a short business meet will take place right before Hayden speaks.
The event will be at Fairmount United Church of Christ, 1650 N Fairmount. The dinner & annual meeting will start at 6:30 pm, Hayden will speak at 8 pm. The cost is $20 for both the dinner and speaker or $10 to hear Tom Hayden only. To RSVP for the annual event send an email to . Anyone is welcome to come hear Hayden without a reservation, for $10.
Tom Hayden, background, Wikipedia;

“Disenchanted by the anti-radicalism of existing groups like the National Student Association was one of the initiators of the influential leftist student activist group Students for a Democratic Society (SDS). Hayden took part in the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC). Hayden became a "freedom rider" in the South and then served as president of SDS from 1962 to 1963.
In 1968, Hayden played a major role in the protests outside the Democratic National Convention in Chicago, Illinois. Six months after the convention he and other protesters including Abbie Hoffman and Jerry Rubin were indicted on federal charges of conspiracy and incitement to riot as part of the "Chicago Eight". Hayden and four others were convicted of crossing state lines to incite a riot, but the charges were reversed on appeal.”

From Radical to liberal;

“During 1976, Hayden made a primary-election challenge to serving California U.S. Senator John V. Tunney. Starting far behind, Hayden mounted a spirited campaign and finished a surprisingly close second in the Democratic primary. He and Fonda later initiated the Campaign for Economic Democracy (CED), which formed a close alliance with then-Governor Jerry Brown and promoted solar energy, environmental protection, and renters' rights policies as well as candidates for local office throughout California, some 100 of whom would be elected.
Hayden later served in the California State Assembly (1982–1992) and the State Senate (1992–2000). During this time, he was frequently protested by conservative groups, including Vietnamese refugees, veterans of the US military and Young Americans for Freedom. He mounted a bid in the Democratic primary for California Governor during 1994 on the theme of campaign finance reform, and ran for Mayor of Los Angeles during 1997, losing to incumbent Republican Richard Riordan.”

Because Hayden has entered the mainstream political system, and even though he is very progressive, various left-wing groups have labeled him a sellout. On the other hand, many leftists groups appreciate what he has done for the good of the country and feel that his career in politics has been a very positive influence on this system. The Nation has a rather positive article about Hayden. On the other hand there is a stinging accusation of selling out from the Re: [Marxism] Tom Hayden: "liberal-left radicals" "upset w/Obama sell-outs are "blind" racists."

Hayden has opposed the US war machine. During 2007 Akashic Books released Hayden's Ending the War in Iraq. In a discussion about the book with Theodore Hamm, published in the Brooklyn Rail, Hayden argues;

"The apparatus of occupation is never going to turn into a peacekeeping economic development agency. We need to withdraw our stamp of approval and our tax dollars from supporting the occupation. That doesn’t mean that there can’t be some attempts at remedies but there should never be used as an excuse to stay."

Like him or not, The Peace and Social Justice Center is very fortunate to have such a well known speaker come to this city to discuss peace issues. Hayden is probably one of the most famous political figures to come to Wichita for such an event and we are very fortunate to be able to hear him speak.

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