Excerpted from the Spark discussion list
So are demands that no-one else supports “better” than ones thatachieve reforms within the framework of capitalism? Where’s the logic in that, unless the purpose of campaigning around “radical” demands is to brand a group, for recruiting purposes?
Don Franks replied:
Are political demands really like garments in a department store, selected by individuals in the hope of creating a particular image?
The first political demand I was really conscious of was Stop the war in Vietnam.
There was a time in New Zealand when that was “a demand that no-one else supported”, apart from, like, a couple of communists and a clergyman.
By the time I got involved a lot of the hardest work had already been done and some solidarity had been built up against the current.
When I became part of the anti war movement the big marches were quite exciting and the Committee on Vietnam debates were always interesting, often quite dramatic. In between times it was a pleasant social thing to sit round and stuff leaflets into envelopes.
The bit I hated doing was wearing a CoV badge and thus getting into debates with some of the huge number of New Zealanders who supported the war and thought the Viet cong were coming down here to take over everything. I had limited knowledge of the details of the war and couldn’t argue very well and didn’t like the abuse and contempt I was sometimes subjected to. Quite often I would guiltily go down town without wearing a badge in order to have a quiet life. [Read more...]