Cagan has been active since the Viet Nam war era, campaigning against to racism at home, from nuclear disarmament to lesbian/gay liberation, from fighting sexism to working against U.S. intervention. She served seven years as Director of the Cuba Information Project. She also coordinated the largest U.S. delegation to Cuba for the World Festival of Youth and Students in 1997.
Cagan was until 2008 the chairperson of United for Peace and Justice peace organization. She is active with the Same Boat Coalition in NYC, and on the board of the Astraea National Lesbian Action Foundation.
First Venceremos Brigade
Addressed Communist Party USA, front meeting
"End The Cold War Fund Human Needs" U.S. Peace Council's Tenth Anniversary National Conference - Boston, Mass., Nov. 10-12, 1989
- Leslie Cagan
- Rep.John Conyers - (D-Mich)
- Prof.Gerald Horne
- Prof. Michio Kaku
- Robert Krimsky
- Prof. Manning Marable
- Jack O'Dell - Rainbow Coalition Operation PUSH
- Dennis Rivera - Local 1199 Drug & Hospital Workers Union
- Angela Sanbrano- CISPES
- Bernie Sanders
- Holly Sklar
- Zehdi Terzi - Palestine Liberation Organisation
- Dessima Williams - Grenada Foundation
National Rainbow Coalition 1990 conference
In May 3-6, 1990 the National Rainbow Coalition held a successful conference in Atlanta, attended by over 1,000.
Socialist Scholars Conference 1990
After the Cold War
- Sponsor: Socialist Dialog
- Moderator: Leslie Cagan Co-Chair NCIPA
- Jim Haughton, Director, Harlem Fightback
- Ann Schwartz, National Executive Committee, Frontline
- David McReynolds, Socialist Party USA, War Resisters League
CoC National Conference endorser
In 1992 Leslie Cagan, Cuba Information Project, New York, endorsed the Committees of Correspondence national conference Conference on Perspectives for Democracy and Socialism in the 90s held at Berkeley California July 17-19.
CoC National Coordinating Committee
The following are listed in order of votes they received as members of the Committees of Correspondence National Coordinating Committee, elected at the Conference on Perspectives for Democracy and Socialism in the 90s held at Berkeley California July 17-19.:
- Angela Davis, SF
- Gus Newport, Berkeley
- Elizabeth Martinez, SF
- Alva Buxenbaum, NY
- Leslie Cagan, NY
- Peter Camejo, Alameda, CA
- Giuliana Milanese, SF
- Robert Chacanaca, Freedom, CA
- Mildred Williamson, Chicago
- Barry Cohen, NY
- Mark Solomon, Boston
- Barbara Lee, Sacramento
- Maudelle Shirek, Berkeley
- Raahi Reddy, New Brunswick, NJ
- Margy Wilkinson, Berkeley
- Yvonne Golden, Florida
- Mary Idosidis, Mill Valley, CA
- Pat Fry, Detroit
- Marty Price, Oakland
- Fran Beal, Oakland
- Marshall Garcia, NY
- Betty Kano, Berkeley
- Michael Myerson, NY
- Sharon Stewart, LA
- Carmen Rumbaut, San Antonio
- Maurice Jackson, Washington, D.C.
- Geoffrey Jacques, NY
- Arthur Kinoy, Montclair, NJ
- Melinda Brown, LA
- Leslie Shaheen, NY
Hiroshima Day, 1993
On August 6 1993, a rally to commemorate Hiroshima Day was held at the United Nations, Dag Hammarskjold Park, New York. The rally was designed "to kickoff a national campaign to collect a million signatures supporting a Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, commend president Clinton for extending the nuclear testing moratorium, urge renewal of the Non Proliferation Treaty, urge swift and complete nuclear disarmament."
- Leslie Cagan, Cuba Information Project
- Elizabeth Holtzman, NYC Comptroller
- Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney
- David McReynolds, War Resisters League
- Ruth Messinger, Manhattan Borough President
- Congressman Jerrold Nadler
- Sonja Ostrom, Metro New York Peace Action Council
- Congressman Major Owens
- Congressman Charles Rangel
- Congressman Edolphus Towns
- Lloyd Wallisch, World Court Project, U.S. branch
- Alyn Ware, Lawyers Committee on Nuclear Policy
CoC training school
According to Georgia Wever the first Leadership Training School ever organized by the Committees of Correspondence took place during July 1998 , at a woodland location in upstate New York. For almost a week, the 24 participants - who came from Northern California, Chicago, North Carolina, South Carolina, and the New York metropolitan area - "talked, challenged, sang, learned, swam, disagreed, feasted, danced, camped, and asked questions."
The curriculum was planned by a committee composed of Mael Apollon, Robin Busch, Leslie Cagan, Pat Fry, Bobby Greenberg, Mel Pritchard, Roque Ristorucci and Zach Robinson. In the follow-up to the Leadership Training School, the curriculum planning committee became the National Education and Literature Committee. It is co-chaired by Bob Greenberg and Mel Pritchard.
Individual endorsers of the event included Leslie Cagan.
One of the many workshops at the Manifestivity was;
Committees of Correspondence Conference 2002
At the Committees of Correspondence National Conference and Convention, July 25-28, 2002 San Francisco State University, the Plenary Panel and Discussion on War, Peace and Democracy consisted of;
Elaine Hagopian, Leslie Cagan, Rhonda Ramiro, Angela Davis September 11 and Bushs war on terrorism. Response to increased militarism, Ashcrofts attack on civil liberties, the role of the United Nations and other international bodies.
In February 2004, Young Democratic Socialists convened a "Life After Bush" conference at CUNY Graduate Center in new york.
- Cornel West, Department of Religion, Princeton University; author of Race Matters and many other books; Honorary Chair of Democratic Socialists of America
- Frances Fox Piven, Distinguished Professor of Political Science, the Graduate Center, CUNY; author of Poor People's Movements and many other works; Honorary Chair of Democratic Socialists of America
- Leslie Cagan, National Coordindator, United for Peace and Justice
- Ian Williams, author of The U.N. for Beginners and a correspondent for In These Times and The Nation
Communist history event
On March 23, 2007, "people jammed in to sit on folding chairs or stand shoulder-to-shoulder and listen to speakers tell of the Communist Party USA’s contributions to American labor and democratic rights". The crowd studied display cases full of photos, buttons, leaflets and letters from the 2,000 boxes of archives donated by the Communist Party to New York University’s Tamiment Library, which specializes in left and labor history.
- The presence of dozens of party and Young Communist League members in the crowd indicated that the Communist Party continues to be an important and growing part of the American political scene.
Speakers included, Tamiment Library director Michael Nash, Committees of Correspondence leader Leslie Cagan, a leader of United for Peace and Justice, Rutgers University professor and CPUSA member Norman Markowitz, Steve Kramer, executive vice president of Service Employees Union Local 1199, New York State Sen. Bill Perkins, New York State Assemblyman Richard Gottfried, CPUSA Executive Vice Chair Jarvis Tyner , American Communist History editor Daniel Leab , University of Houston professor Gerald Horne and CPUSA leader Teresa Albano
Leslie Cagan, a leader of United for Peace and Justice, the national anti-Iraq-war coalition, said of the party’s peace activism, “We have so much to learn from the history of the Communist Party about how this work has been done.” .
Open Letter to Obama on Iran
United for Peace and Justice
Independent Progressive Politics Network
Committee to Celebrate the Life of Luis Miranda Rivas
In 2009 Leslie Cagan was a member of the Committee to Celebrate the Life of Luis Miranda Rivas.
Campaign for Peace and Democracy
Harlem rally against gun violence
More than 2,000 predominantly Black and Latino working people gathered March 21, 2013, on Adam Clayton Powell Blvd. in Harlem in a militant protest against gun violence.
Organized by a broad coalition of labor and people's organizations, it was a "powerful grassroots protest against the National Riffle Association and a warning to Congress that it must pass strong gun control legislation, including a ban on assault weapons."
George Gresham, president of Local 1199 of the Service Workers, captured the fighting spirit of the rally. In a message to all elected officials, Gresham said, "We are the people; do the right thing and we got your back. Do the wrong thing, we got your job."
MSNBC commentator, the Rev. Al Sharpton, addressing the NRA, declared: "We have the right to bear arms but we do not have the right to kill babies. The second amendment does not give you the right to have guns that can hold 30 rounds. We have to take back our streets here in New York and beyond."
Leslie Cagan, who was part of the organizing team for the rally, said that the demonstration was particularly important in light of the Senate leadership having announced that day that the assault weapons ban would be left out of the legislative package. "We need Congress to find the backbone to stand up for communities and families here in Harlem and all over the country," Cagan declared.
Jackie Rowe Adams from Harlem Mothers S.A.V.E spoke with great passion about losing two of her children to gun violence. "I am in pain," she said tearfully. "Put the guns down and pick up the peace sign." There were several mothers who told heartfelt stories of how they lost their sons to gun violence.
There was also Darren Wagner, from Newton, Conn. expressing his community's full support to the people of New York in their fight for gun control.
Shannon Watts, the founder of "Moms Demand Action," a national group of 80,000 advocating strong gun control, talked about her activities.
Michael Mulgrew, president of New York's UFT, told the crowd that his union was divesting from any stocks that have anything to do with guns.
An emergency room doctor from Harlem Hospital, Dr. Vanessa Gorospe, said, "Gun violence is second only to auto accidents as a cause of death. The number of children below five years old killed by guns are four times the number of police killed by guns."
Refusing to buy into attempts by the NRA and some other groups to scapegoat the mentally ill, she declared: "The mentally ill are four times more likely to be victims of violence rather than purveyors of violence."
The surprise guest at the rally who received a warm welcome was legendary jazz singer Tony Bennett. He spoke of how Harry Belafonte had convinced him to march in Selma and how it had a big impact on him. Bennett is now an outspoken advocate of an assault weapons ban.
The chair of the rally. the Rev. Jacque De Graff of the Caanan Baptist Church, aroused the crowd as he introduced speakers. He emphasized, as did many other speakers, that it was necessary to keep pushing to pass Gov. Cuomo's gun control bill and that it is necessary to carry the fight to Washington. "We are going to change America, starting right here in Harlem," he declared.
There were many elected officials at the rally including two running for mayor. None were allowed to speak but their names were mentioned, John Liu, the first Chinese American to run for mayor, received the loudest applause.
Estevan Nembhard, Manhattan organizer for the Communist Party USA, pointed out that "it is common knowledge in Harlem and in ghettos and barrios across the country; when the unemployment rate and drop-out rate goes up, so does desperation and violence. This rally is very important and will help but not enough was said about the root causes of violence; the lack of jobs, education, the presence of drugs and the absence of a real future for our youth."
- ↑ http://www.cc-ds.org/leadership.html
- ↑ THE THEORY AND PRACTICE OF COMMUNISM IN 1972 (Venceremos Brigade) PART 2, hearings before the Committee on Internal Security 92nd Congress oct 16-19, 1972 pages 8132-8135
- ↑ Guardian, November 8, 1989
- ↑ Our Struggle/Nuestra Lucha. Vol. 8, No 2-3, summer 1990
- ↑ Second Annual Socialist Scholars Conference program.
- ↑ CCDS Background
- ↑ Proceedings of the Committees of Correspondence Conference: Perspectives for Democracy and Socialism in the '90s booklet, printed by CoC in NY, Sept. 1992 (Price: $4)
- ↑ Peoples Weekly World, June 31, 1993
- ↑ Mail Archive website: Communist Manifestivity Conference Schedule, Oct. 28, 1998
- ↑ [The Corresponder Vol 10, number 1, June 2002 http://www.cc-ds.org/pub_arch/CorresponderX1-2.pdf]
- ↑ http://www.dsausa.org/LatestNews/2004/nyc04.pdf
- ↑ Peoples World, Party of hope archives show living history, by: Dan Margolis, March 31, 2007
- ↑ Open Letter to Obama on Iran
- ↑ http://www.unitedforpeace.org/article.php?list=type&type=16
- ↑ http://www.ippn.org/IPPN_People
- ↑ http://breakallchains.blogspot.com/2008/01/jan-25th-celebrate-life-of-luis-miranda.html
- ↑ Endorsers
- ↑ PW Thousands in Harlem rally against gun violence, by: Jarvis Tyner March 27 2013